Putian, also known as “Xinghua”, is located in the eastern coast of Fujian and at latitude 24°59'-25°46' north and longitude 118°27'-119°40' east.
Covering a area of 4,060.4 square kilometers, Putian borders Taiwan Strait to the east, Quanzhou City to the west and to the south and Fuzhou City to the north. There are jagged mountains in the northwest and chains of undulating hills in the middle, while the broad plains in the southeast and the meandering Mulan River, Yanshou River and Qiulu River also help constitute the typical Southern Chinese river-side scenery.
Putian was called “Xinghua” and “Xin'an” in ancient times, and has always been an important political, economic and cultural center in Middle Fujian. The city now governs Xianyou County, Licheng District, Chengxiang District, Hanjiang District and Xiuyu District, with a land area covering 4,200 square kilometers and total population amounting to 3,230,000. There are more than 600,000 overseas Chinese, foreign citizens of Chinese origin, and Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan compatriots with Putian origin. Among them, there are 470,000 overseas Chinese and foreign citizens of Chinese origin, making Putian one of major hometowns of overseas Chinese in Fujian.
Putian is famed for its numerous scenic resorts, cultural relics and historic sites: the famous Mazu Ancestral Temple on Meizhou Island, the unique ancestral temple of three religions, the Jiuli Lake scenic zone renowned for its lake, cave, waterfall and rock (one of “Three Uniqueness of Fujian”), and the great ancient barrage of Mulanbei (one of the best preserved ancient large hydraulic projects found in China). Guanghua Temple is one of four major Buddhist temples of Fujian, as well as one of “the top 10 tourist resorts”. The Sanqing Hall of Xuanmiao Abbey is one of the best preserved Taoist architectural complex built in Tang Dynasty. Furthermore, there are also a range of antique building relics as Southern Shaolin Temple, Guqiao Building of Song Dynasty, Tomb of Cai Xiang, the relic of porcelain kiln and Puxi Town, the famous town for fighting against Japanese pirates in Ming Dynasty.
Putian has also been praised as “the City of Literature” in ancient times. During the 1,200 years beginning from Tang Dynasty, there have been numerous talents and cultural celebrities, including Lin Mo, Lin Zhaoen, Cai Xiang, Zheng Qiao, Liu Kezhuang and etc. The dialect of Puxian still remains the rhyme of Tang and Song Dynasty, while the Puxian Drama is also named as “the living fossil of southern drama”.