Jiuzhaigou Travel Guide and Tour Packages
Jiuzhaigou, literally means "Valley of Nine Villages", is one of the best places to see the beauty of our mother nature. It is famous for having the most beautiful water views in China. The ancient Tibetan village in the valley is another attractive feature of Jiuzhaigou. Jiuzhaigou now is a national park, and was inscribed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1992.Jiuzhaigou Valley is located in Zhangzha Town, Jiuzhaigou County, Aba Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Region of northern Sichuan, approximately 540km away from Chengdu. There is a saying popular among travelers - ”One doesn’t want to see any other water landscape after visiting Jiuzhaigou”. You can hardly image how stunning the water views are in Jiuzhaigou. There are 108 plateau lakes, together with many streams, waterfalls, rivers and beaches, form a colorful and peaceful picture. Travelers use six phrases to describe the features of Jiuzhaigou: green lakes, superimposed waterfalls, colorful forests, pure snow mountains, impressive Tibetan custom, and blue ice.
Jiuzhaigou Valley Has 114 Pretty Lakes
Jiuzhaigou consists of three connecting valleys shaping like a “Y”. Zechawang Valley is located on the left and Rize Valley on the right. The two valleys meet together from north to south, then form the Shuzheng Valley. Most attractions in Jiuzhaigou spread in these three valleys, and can be visited both by convenient sightseeing bus and tourist walking path.
Entering Jiuzhaigou Gate, you will first reach Shuzheng Vally which lasts about 14.5km. There are not many attractions and tourists on the beginning part of Shuzheng Valley, which is a great chance to hike the tourist path. But don’t spend too much time here, because you have to visit other two valleys in a day. From the Jiuzhaigou gate, apart from several large lakes – Sparking Lake, Grass Lake, Tiger Lake and Rhino Lake, there are other more than 40 beautiful small lakes. There is also a sideway to a featured Bon Buddhist monastery – Zharu Monastery. You may don’t know Tibetans in Jiuzhaigou, Songpan area are followers of traditional Bon Buddhism which is quite different from Tibetan Buddhism, for instance, the turning direction of praying wheel is anticlockwise, while the tradition in Tibetan Buddhism is clockwise way. The most famous attraction of Shuzheng Valley is the Nuorilang Waterfall. It is 20 meters high and 320 meters wide. It is recorded as the widest highland waterfall in China, the widest travertine-topped waterfall in the world. Above the waterfall are Nuorilang Lakes and Shuzheng Lakes are a serious lakes surrounded by colorful trees.
Rize Valley is the right branch of “Y”. It is also the most beautiful alley compared to other two valleys. Stetching 18km from Nuorilang Waterfall to the end, the valley has most fantastic lakes in Jiuzhaigou, including the Mirror Lake, Peal Lake, Five – Flower Lake, Panda Lake, Jianzhu Lake and Swan Lake, etc. So you need to leave enough time to explore this valley, though you can’t actually really see the pandas in Panda Lake, peal in the Pearl Lake, or swan on the Swan Lake. But the changing stunning landscape along the valley will make your eyes and camera busy, especially the colorful Five – Flower Lake which reflects many different colors in different seasons.
Zechawang Valley is the left branch of “Y”. It is the highest-altitude sightseeing route in Jiuzhaigou. The best attractions are Five-color Lake and Long Lake. The Five-color Lake doesn’t really have five colors, in fact, it reflects different colors of blue under the rich and bright sunlight. Long Lake is the largest lake in Jiuzhaigou, covering more than 7.5km with largest depth of 103m. Hiking from Five-color Lake to Long Lake is the best experience in Zechawang Valley.
Recommended length of visiting: 2~3 days;
Ticket fee: Peak season (April 1th to November 15th) – 220 RMB ; Off season(November 13th to March 31th ) – 90 RMB;
Rough Cost for Jiuzhaigou Travel >>
If you are a photographer, you have to come to Jiuzhaigou, ideal place for some serious photography. Seasons and weather are very important for photography. We advise you to visit Jiuzhaigou in Autumn(Oct, Sept) and Winter(Dec, Jan). You can spend two days in Jiuzhaigou and one extra day to Huanglong.
Walking and Trekking
With many well-paved plank roads in the valleys, travelers can walk leisurely on the roads while enjoy the stunning landscape of lakes, waterfalls, and mountains. Most small sights can be reached by both walking and park bus.
Local Tibetan Folk Shows
Jiuzhaigou area is the hometown for some Tibetans in northern Sichuan Province. If you are interested in experiencing authentic Tibetan culture, you can go to watch a Tibetan Opera Show, or join in locals to take part in a bonfire party of mutton BBQ.
Nearby Trip to Huanglong
Travelers usually travel Jiuzhagou with Huanglong which is also a World Natural Heritage Site. It has a far-reaching mountain views and spectacular Calcified ponds.