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Stamps of approval

By ZHANG YI | China Daily | Updated: 2024-02-15 12:33

Visitors dressed in hanfu, or traditional Han Chinese costume, collect stamps at a special exhibition about the Tang Dynasty (618-907) at Xi'an Museum in Xi'an, Shaanxi province, in February last year. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Young travelers prioritize places that make a good impression

Stamp collecting has recently emerged as a fresh and innovative approach for young people to document their travels, and many have been driven by the hobby, which offers a strong sense of interactivity and ceremony, to explore more attractions.

Instead of merely capturing photos with famous landmarks, enthusiasts of this new trend eagerly explore every nook and cranny of various attractions, museums, and shops during their journeys in search of a diverse array of stamps.

They imprint the stamps, usually with single or multicolored pictures of the scenic spots, names of the places, profiles of famous people or cultural relics, on postcards or in travel journals or commemorative albums, thereby creating a unique keepsake of their travels.

Free or paid, each stamp serves as a tangible representation of the visitor's presence at that specific location, becoming a cherished part of their memories. Furthermore, it has facilitated the discovery of hidden gems and unique travel experiences at destinations.

Kuang Zhaoxin, a 25-year-old designer, is an avid traveler and has been passionate about scrap-booking for over six years. She enjoys sketching and painting, using the book as a means to record memories from her travels.

Early last year, during one of her trips, she encountered stamp collecting and decided to incorporate it into her travel journal. Before each trip, she researches stamp-collection strategies on social media. During a two-day trip to Beijing, she collected over 80 stamps.

Kuang particularly admires the beautifully crafted replica artifact stamps found in museums. She said that impressing these into her journal and then recording memories from the museums creates a strong sense of connection.

"It actually leaves a trace, a sense of ceremony. It serves as a great way to record the trip. When you see a particular exhibit and then happen to collect a stamp of the exhibit, looking back, you'll marvel at how beautiful it was and recall how impressive the exhibit was," she said.

Kuang also enjoys purchasing postcards, impressing them with distinctive local stamps, adding well-wishes, and then sending them to her friends.

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