Jiuzhaigou National Park is one of the most spectacular places I have ever visited. It’s crazy to think that before arriving in China, I had no idea this places like this existed in the country.
Jiuzhaigou National Park is a network of valleys located in Sichuan Province. It is home to some of the most breathtaking natural scenery including waterfalls, colourful lakes and snow-capped mountains.
I truely believe it is one of China’s best kept secrets. That is not to say it isn’t busy, there are a LOT of Chinese tourists milling around the park, but not many foreigners. For me, it would be a real shame that someone would miss out on this incredible place of natural beauty, so I’m about to spill all of the secrets…
Jiuzhaigou lies at the edge of the Tibetan Plateau and is home to both Tibetan and Qiang people.
The park has a diverse range of beautiful scenery including alpine lakes, waterfalls, deep forests with snowy mountains as a backdrop. With it’s incredible natural beauty and inspiring scenery it is no wonder that it was named a UNESCO world heritage site in 1992.
We visited the park in early April and there was still snow on the ground, this gave the park an air of magic. Once we began walking around the secluded walkways that traverse the park, the sun was shining brightly and made for a wonderful day. We really experienced all of the seasons within the park!
How to get there
There are daily buses that leave from Chengdu, with the most popular being the early morning departure. It is a rather long journey, but the views of the passing countryside are amazing and make it less arduous. There is also an airport located within 2 hours of the park. The Juizhai Hualong Airport has daily flights from Chengdu, Xi’an and Chongqing.
- Go to the park early to avoid the biggest crowds, it opens at 7am and closes at 6pm. We walked around the park, rather than taking bus to each location. I would absolutely recommend this, we saw so many amazing places that you would have missed on the bus. It isn’t difficult terrain and the wooden footpaths make it easy to follow the trail.
- Make sure to check the weather and dress appropriately, although it was hot and sunny in the afternoon, it was so cold and snowing in the morning, we would have been freezing if we didn’t buy (outrageously bright) coats!
- Also, bring your own food and snacks into the park. There are a few areas where you can purchase food, but it is mostly cup noodles and hot dogs and is more expensive than outside.
If you’re heading to China, I would highly recommend adding this amazing place into your itinerary. I cannot recommend it enough, visiting this Jiuzhaigou was one of the highlights during my stay in China. I hope that the pictures have captured at least some of the beauty of this destination – although nothing will do justice to seeing it with your own eyes.
Have you ever heard of Jiuzhaigou National Park?