For the first time in nearly a decade, Chinese ships docked at Naval Base San Diego on Sunday.
The three warships –- destroyer Haikou, frigate Yueyang and supply ship Qiandaohu –- recently participated in RIMPAC, the world’s largest naval exercise. Twenty-two countries took part in training off the coasts of Hawaii and San Diego.
Colorful Chinese lion dancers and drummers performed on the pier during Sunday’s celebration. Visitors were invited to tour the destroyer Haikou.
Officials from the U.S. Navy and the People's Liberation Army of China said they hope the port visit will strengthen ties between the two countries.
Chinese-American John Yang of San Diego said it promotes peace and friendship.
“It’s just like having a friend or relative come from far, far away, a thousand miles away, to visit you,” Yang said.