Chengdu (UK: /tʃɛŋˈd/, US: /tʃʌŋ-/;[9] simplified Chinese: 成都; pinyin: Chéngdū; Sichuanese pronunciation: [tsʰən˨˩tu˥], Standard Mandarin pronunciation: [ʈʂʰə̌ŋ.tú] (listen)), alternatively romanized as Chengtu, is a sub-provincial city which serves as the capital of the Chinese province of Sichuan. It is one of the three most-populous cities in Western China, the other two being Chongqing and Xi'an. As of 2014, the administrative area housed 14,427,500 inhabitants, the largest in Sichuan, with an urban population of 10,152,632. At the time of the 2010 census, Chengdu was the fifth-most populous agglomeration in China, with 10,484,996 inhabitants in the built-up area including Xinjin County and Deyang's Guanghan City. Chengdu is considered a "Beta + (global second-tier)" city classification (together with Barcelona and Washington, D.C.) according to the Globalization and World Cities Research Network.[10] In 2021, Chengdu ranked 35th in the Global Financial Centres Index.[11]

Chengtu, Ch'eng-tu
Clockwise from top: Chengdu skyline overlooking the Jin River, New Century Global Center, Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, Anshun Bridge, Tianfu Square,
Hibiscus City, Brocade City, Turtle City, Cheng'msterdam[1]
Location of Chengdu City jurisdiction in Sichuan
Location of the city center in Sichuan
Chengdu (China)
Coordinates (Tianfu Square): 30°39′36″N 104°03′48″E
Municipal seatWuhou District
 - County-level

10 districts, 5 county-level cities, 5 counties
  TypeSub-provincial city
  BodyChengdu Municipal People's Congress
  CCP SecretaryShi Xiaolin
  Congress ChairmanLi Zhongbin
  MayorWang Fengchao
  CPPCC ChairmanZhang Shan
  Prefecture-level & Sub-provincial city14,378.18 km2 (5,551.45 sq mi)
  Urban885.61 km2 (341.94 sq mi)
4,558.4 km2 (1,760.0 sq mi)
  Downtown465.88 km2 (179.88 sq mi)
500 m (1,600 ft)
Highest elevation
5,364 m (17,598 ft)
Lowest elevation
378 m (1,240 ft)
  Prefecture-level & Sub-provincial city16,330,000[3]
  Urban density13,000/km2 (33,000/sq mi)
18.1 million[5]
  Major Ethnic group
Time zoneUTC+8 (China Standard)
Postal code
Area code(s)(0)28
ISO 3166 codeCN-SC-01
GDP (2020)¥1.7716 trillion
$273.8 billion[6]
GDP Per Capita (2020)¥106,850
License Plate Prefix川A and 川G
TreeGinkgo biloba
FlowerHibiscus mutabilis
HDI (2015)0.791[8] (21st) – high
"Chéngdū" in Chinese characters
Hanyu PinyinChéngdū
Cen2du1 (Sichuanese Pinyin)
Literal meaning"Become a Capital" or "Established Capital"
Former name
Literal meaningWestern Capital
City of the Turtle
Traditional Chinese龜城
Simplified Chinese龟城
Literal meaningTurtle City
City of the Brocade Official
Traditional Chinese錦官城
Simplified Chinese锦官城
Literal meaningThe Brocade Official City
City of Brocade
Traditional Chinese錦城
Simplified Chinese锦城
Literal meaningBrocade City
City of Hibiscus
Literal meaningHibiscus City

Chengdu is located in central Sichuan. The surrounding Chengdu Plain is known as the "Country of Heaven" (Chinese: ; pinyin: Tiānfǔ zhi Guó) and the "Land of Abundance". Its prehistoric settlers included the Sanxingdui culture. The site of Dujiangyan, an ancient irrigation system, is designated as a World Heritage Site. The Jin River flows through the city.

Founded by the state of Shu prior to its incorporation into China, Chengdu is unique as a major Chinese settlement that has maintained its name mostly unchanged throughout the imperial, republican, and communist eras. It was the capital of Liu Bei's Shu Han during the Three Kingdoms Era, as well as several other local kingdoms during the Middle Ages.[12] During World War II, refugees from eastern China fleeing from the Japanese settled in Chengdu. After the war, Chengdu's importance as a link between Eastern and Western China expanded, with railways built to Chongqing in 1952, and Kunming and Tibet afterwards.[12] In the 1960s, Chengdu became an important centre of China's national defense industry.

Chengdu is now one of the most important economic, financial, commercial, cultural, transportation, and communication centers in Western China. Its economy is diverse, characterized by the machinery, automobile, medicine, food, and information technology industries. Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport, a hub of Air China and Sichuan Airlines, is one of the 30 busiest airports in the world, and the Chengdu railway station is one of the six biggest in China. Chengdu also hosts many international companies and more than 12 consulates; more than 270 Fortune 500 companies have established branches in Chengdu.[13] Chengdu is the seat of the Western Theatre Command region of the People's Liberation Army.[14] Chengdu will host the FISU Summer World University Games in 2021, an international multi-sport event. It is considered one of the most livable cities in China.[15][16]

Chengdu's culture largely reflects that of its province, Sichuan; in 2011, it was recognized by UNESCO as a city of gastronomy.[17] It is associated with the giant panda, a Chinese national symbol, which inhabits the area of Sichuan; the city is home to the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding.

Chengdu is one of the world's top 40 cities by scientific research output.[18] The city is home to the greatest number of universities and research institutes in Southwestern China, notably Sichuan University, University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Southwestern University of Finance and Economics and Southwest Jiaotong University.