1986 World Exposition on Transportation and Communication - Vancouver - Expo'86

Transport and Communication

May 2, 1986 - October 13, 1986


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People's Republic of China

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The pavilion of the People's Republic of China is entered through a beautiful ancient pailou, a kind of ornamented archway, and a long walkway that leads to one of the oldest civilizations in the world. This huge country of over a billion people has one of the largest pavilions on the site.

The pavilion's exhibition illustrates China's historical achievements in transport and communications.
Technological innovations are on display, including a communications satellite, a rocket, a receiving ground station and a hydrographic ship.

A reproduction of the explorer Zhen He's flagship takes you back to the 15th century, during the Ming Dynasty. At that time, almost a century before the voyages of Vasco da Gama, Christopher Columbus and Magellan, China was establishing itself as one of the leading maritime powers.

Immediately following this is a reproduction of a bronze chariot that is two thousand years old. Discovered in 1980, it is the largest, best preserved and oldest of all the carts found so far. The terracotta statues excavated from the tomb of Qin Shi Huang flank the chariot.

We then move on to China's land transport achievements. The mountain road from Ching'hai to Tibet is the highest and longest in the world. It stretches 1938 kilometres along the "roof of the world", crossing eight mountains and ten rivers.
The model of the Great Wall of China shows that it is not only an architectural masterpiece but also an ingenious means of communication. In the past, lanterns were lit in the watchtowers to signal an enemy attack.

One then takes an imaginary boat to cross the three gorges of the Yangtze River.

In China, the traditional way of sending a telegram is to encode the Chinese characters and leave it to the recipient to decode them. The revolutionary computer on display in the pavilion does away with this.

The thematic exhibition ends with an audio-visual presentation (video, film and slides) describing China and its people.
Visitors can also see traditional silk, jade, ivory, matting and small finely carved objects being made, taste Chinese food in the restaurant and buy souvenirs.

©Official Guide - Expo'86