I don’t know what to make of this: The Chinese are copying one of my most beloved sites on earth – the city of Hallstatt, Austria, which my family visited in 2010 (as seen here.  Also found on Google earth coordinates: Latitude: 47°33’44.64″N  Longitude: 13°38’57.41″E).  Apparently, they have been sending “spies” there for years to quietly map out the place.  Now that they have, they will create an exact duplicate (minus the Austrian people one would assume) in Huizhou, China (Guangdong Province, Google earth coordinates: Latitude: 23°07’51.85″N  Longitude: 114°26’29.45″E).  The article goes on to state that it will appeal to upscale Chinese citizens, and the vast population of Caucasian Expats living in Hong Kong about 60 miles/100 km to the south.

I sort of doubt that they will also copy the massive salt mine that is up in the hills of the original Hallstatt – the reason for the town’s existence (hall means salt and statt means place).  Nor will they likely duplicate the food, beer, or incredible culture of the place.  It will be pretty, but “plastic,” lacking true character.

Maybe Austria should recreate The Bund in Shanghai.