Now You Can Travel to Austria -- Without Leaving China

Photo: Imaginechina/Corbis

Amongst many other things, the Chinese are known for their attention to detail when it comes to knocking off other products. From fake Rolexes to cloned electronic devices, there’s a huge underground market of Chinese replicated goods. But now, the Chinese have stepped it up by cloning an entire village in Austria — building by building, brick by brick — on their native soil.

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The replication of picturesque Hallstatt, Austria has been under construction in the southern Chinese province of Guangdong for years — and at a cost of $940 million — but it’s only been recently that developers finally opened their boundaries to the public, according to psfk. However, it’s not like anyone really lives in the out-of-place Austrian town in the middle of China; it was built mainly as a tourist destination for the Chinese, so that they may have a completely replicated “authentic” Austrian getaway — without ever having to go to Europe.

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Photo: Imaginechina/Corbis

What’s next, Chinese clones of Julie Andrews and the cast of the Sound of Music? How will the Chinese solve a problem like Maria, or clone a few more of my favorite things?

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