China is a vast country that offers a plethora of scenes to take in and enjoy. Whilst its cities offer striking cosmopolitan settings to explore, the most spectacular scenes can be found far away from these bright lights.
Rural China is a paradise that often doesn’t get the attention it deserves. Its natural beauty will leave you stunned.
In this blog post, we reveal the natural wonders you just have to see when visiting China so you can appreciate everything that this great country has to offer.
Located more than 200 miles from the capital of the Sichuan Province, Chengdu, a visit to Jiuzhaigou Valley is well worth the journey. This nature reserve and national park spans over 72,000 hectares and was designated a World Heritage Site in 1992, and you’ll see why once you lay eyes on it!
Its turquoise blue lakes are flanked by snow-capped mountain ranges and fed by the most beautiful waterfalls you’re ever likely to see. The area is also abundant in wildlife, with the giant panda just one of the endangered species that call the Jiuzhaigou Valley their home. Autumn is the best time to visit Jiuzhaigou Valley, with its alpine scenes particularly colourful during this time of year.
Zhangjiajie National Forest Park
From the depths of a valley to the peaks of Zhangjiajie National Forest Park. Zhangjiajie National Forest Park provides some out of this world scenes, with its floating peaks a particular highlight.
Carved by nature, these sandstone spires climb over 200 metres and are topped by mini forests that have their own unique ecosystems.
The unbelievable landscape even inspired James Cameron’s epic science fiction film, Avatar. Visitors of all ages can enjoy Zhangjiajie National Forest Park with its most visited scenic areas easily accessible by cable cars, trams, shuttle buses and elevators.
Going off the beaten track is one thing we’d recommend, however. Yangjiajie, YellowStone Village and the Old House area of Zhangjiajie require more hiking but are just as stunning and less crowded.
A key draw of the Guangxi Province, the Li River often tops the charts for the most beautiful water based scenes. In fact, it was recently featured in National Geographic’s Top 10 Watery Wonders. The stunning river meanders for over 50 miles, and exploring just part of it by bike, boat, bamboo raft, or foot offers glimpses of the scenes that inspired generations of Chinese artists.
Tiger Leaping Gorge
Described by many as one of the best hiking destinations in the country, Tiger Leaping Gorge is a must-visit for outdoor adventurers. It’s the deepest gorge in the world and is also home to towering peaks, the highest reaching over 12,000 feet in height. Be aware however that exploring Tiger Leaping Gorge isn’t for the faint-hearted as Why Wait to See the World explains:
“From the start of the trail, it takes approximately 2 days to get to the Tiger Leaping Gorge where the tiger leapt. You do have the option of just driving directly to where Tiger Leaping Gorge trail starts but that’s just no fun. Along the way, you’ll find many waterfalls, beautiful sceneries, rivers, and animals roaming around. The trail itself is not for the weak. One misstep leads to a long way down. The trails are narrow and sometimes hardly noticeable.”
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