China has 110,000 kilometers of navigable rivers, streams, lakes, and canals, more than any country in the world. In 2003 these inland waterways carried nearly 1.6 trillion tons of freight and 6.3 trillion passenger/kilometers to more than 5,100 inland ports.

  The main navigable rivers are the Heilong JiangYangtze RiverXiang River, a short branch of the Yangtze; Pearl RiverHuangpu RiverLijiang River; and Xi Jiang.

  Ships of up to 10,000 tons can navigate more than 1,000 km (621 mi) on the Yangtze as far as Wuhan. Ships of 1,000 tons can navigate from Wuhan to Chongqing, another 1,286 km (799 mi) upstream. The Grand Canal is the world's longest canal at 1,794 km (1,115 mi) and serves 17 cities between Beijing and Hangzhou. It links five major rivers: the Haihe,HuaiheHuangheQiantang, and Yangtze.

  Construction of new railways and highways has diminished the utility of China's rivers for passenger transport. Nonetheless, passenger boats are still popular in some mountainous regions, such as Western Hubei and Chongqing (the Three Gorges area), where railways are few and road access to many towns is inconvenient.


[ Web editor:    Source:wikipedia ]