Leshan was called Jiazhou in the ancient time and located in southern Chengdu Plain, southwest of Sichuan province, bordering Zigong and Neijiang in the east, Yibin and Liangshan Yi Autonomous Region in the south and it neighbors Ya’an in the west and Chengdu in the north. Leshan city covers an area of 12,826 square kilometers and has a population of 3.23 million in 2011.
Leshan City is listed as a national historical and cultural city, the first group of national open cities, the National Green Model City, China Excellent Tourism City and National Garden City, as well as 2008 Beijing Olympic Games torch relay cities. It’s also one of the 4 places in China that Buddhists must visit due to its 2000 years old Buddhism Culture and the world famous Leshan Giant Buddha which is by the west bank of the Dadu River. The 97 meters tall giant Buddha is considered as the Biggest sitting Buddha in the world and was declared as the World Cultural and Natural Heritage by UNESCO in 1996.
As a renowned scenic resort and boasts the "No.1 Buddha under Heaven", Leshan Giant Buddha scenic area (including the Giant Sleeping Buddha) and Mount Emeishan scenic area which is renowned for four spectacles - Sunrise, Cloud Sea, Buddha Rays and Saint Lamps. There are many Buddhist temples in these scenic areas including Wuyou Temple, Lingyun Temple, Baoguo Temple, Hufu Temple, Wannian Temple to name but a few. Notable scenic resorts in the surrounding area are: Wutongqiao (nicknamed 'Small West Lake') which is an ancient waterside town located 24 kilometers (about 15 miles) south of the city proper; Luocheng Ancient Town which is well-known for its ship like appearance located 60 kilometers (about 37 miles) northeast of Jianwei County. Moreover, the city is the hometown of Guo Moruo (1892-1978) a famous Chinese literary figure. The Former Residence of Guo Moruo located in Shawan District is also an attractive scenic spot in Leshan.
Leshan city is rich in forest and water energy resources. Mineral deposits include rock salt, bittern, limestone, and saltpeter. It is one of the major producers of salt and a large hydropower base in the southwest of China. The Gongzui hydropower station on the Dadu River is a regional power grid. The chief farming products include rice, grapes, oranges, tea, silkworm cocoons and pigs. Travelers to Leshan city would just marvel at the sights displaying in front of them. Leshan stands as another treasure of the Sichuan Province waiting for you to be discovered.