Thursday, December 15, 2005


Construction on marine museum to begin


China View
December 12, 2005

Beijing -- The construction of the Nanhai No. 1 Museum, designed to display more than 300,000 historical relics, will begin in Hailing Island, Yangjiang from Dec. 28, a source with the Yangjiang Municipal Culture Bureau said Saturday.

The museum, also called "China's Marine Silk Road Museum," will open to the public in 2007. It will mainly exhibit ancient vessels such as the Nanhai No. 1 ship and its contents, which have been salvaged from the South China Sea.

Covering an area of more than 130,000 square meters, it will be the largest theme museum of its kind in Asia, the Guangzhou Daily reported.

The 25-meter-long Nanhai No. 1 sank 20 nautical miles off Hailing Island about 800 years ago. It was the first ancient vessel discovered on the "Marine Silk Road" of the South China Sea.

Green glazed porcelain plates, blue porcelain pottery and other rare antiques have been found during the initial exploration of the ship. Archaeologists estimate that there are probably 50,000 to 70,000 relics on the ship.

Chinese archaeologists, using global positioning system (GPS) technology, have accurately located the ship and will make a huge "steel basket" to salvage the ship Dec. 28.

A research center for the China Marine Silk Road will be also set up in the museum, examining the social and economic development in southern China during ancient dynasties.

The museum also includes a water stage for performances related to the "China Marine Silk Road." A diving club, a sailing club, a pedestrian shopping street and other facilities will also be built near the museum to help attract and entertain tourists from around the world.


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