Yuyao has a local population of 120,000 in downtown, within the total 850,000 in the county. However, recently the migrated workers and their families have almost doubled the total population to about 1.6 million, but they do not show up in the official census and other related statistics data.
Yuyao lies in a subtropical monsoon zone, rich in sunshine and rain fall, warm and humid, distinct in the four seasons. The mean annual sunshine is 2,061 hours and the annual rate of sunshine is 47%. The mean annual temperature is 16 degree Celsius and the coldest months perennial are January and February, the hottest are July and August. The mean annual precipitation is around 1,300 millimeters and changes greatly from year to year. The hyetal distribution is also uneven during a year, and the rainfall centers on East Asian rainy season (梅雨) (aka bai-u rainy period) from April to June and typhoon period from July to December.
Yuyao offers a wide variety of landscape from wide open ocean in Hangzhou Bay, rice fields in fertile plains to high spires in Siming Mountains. Yaojiang River originates in Siming Mountains in the south where the Ninth Fantasy World of Taoism is located. Yaojiang River goes through the county and extends eastward into East China Sea as well as Pacific Ocean.
Yuyao is well known for its rich heritage of civilization. The Neolithic Hemudu culture formed in Yuyao about 5,000 B.C. is one of the earliest sites of human civilization on earth. The material and ethical relics revealed large-scale rice plantation and other agricultural activities, hurdle style architecture, paddling and boating and respecting birds and sun.
Yuyao also produced many famous scholars in the history, for example, Yan Zi-Ling in Han Dynasty, Yu Fan in Three Kingdoms Period, Yu Xi in Jin Dynasty, Yu Shinan in Sui Dynasty and Tang Dynasty, Wang Yangming, Zhu Shunshui and Huang Zongxi in Ming Dynasty. Wang Yangming and Huang Zongxi were ranked among China’s top 10 ideologists. Yuyao was then named as “the Most Famous County”and “the Famous State on Literature”. During the Anti-Japanese War, Yuyao was one of China’s 19 bases against Japanese invaders, and was the center of anti-Japanese bases of eastern Zhejiang province.
Yuyao is known as a place for rice and fish. Its economy has been booming as private enterprises dominate after the economic reform began in late 1970s. In 2007, GDP will reach RMB 34 billions, with double digit annual growth rates over the past 20 years. It ranked as one of the top-20 counties in terms of comprehensive economic strength out of all the 2100 counties in China. The industry products are mainly electric appliances, plastic moulding, machinery and textiles. High-tech industries such as materials, optical, electro-mechanical integration and fine chemical industry are developing rapidly. The main agriculture, forestry and animal husbandry products of Yuyao are tea, fruits like waxberry and mandarain orange, bamboo, silkworm, fowl, livestock and fish. Fresh produce is available in all seasons.
The Shanghai-Hangzhou-Ningbo Expressway and China National Highway 329 and Shanghai-Hangzhou-Ningbo Railway go through Yuyao. The world's longest trans-oceanic bridge - the 36 km Hangzhou Bay Bridge - is under construction near the northern border of Yuyao; it will reduce the cross bay traffic to only 80 km from the current 420 km section of Shanghai-Hangzhou-Ningbo Expressway around Hangzhou Bay.