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15 July 2015

Cultural Landscape

Zhangjiajie National Forest Park


Zhangjiajie National Forest Park (including Huangshizhai, Jinbianxi, Golden Whip Stream,Yuanjiajie, Tianzi Mountain, Huanglong Cave, Baofeng Lake, Tianmen Mountain)
 


(Spring scene nearby Huanglong Cave, Zhangjiajie national park.)

Zhangjiajie National Forest Park is located in the southwest part of Wulingyuan Scenic Spot which is situated in the northwest part of Hunan Province. In 1992, Wulingyuan Scenic Spot with Zhangjiajie as its main part was inscribed by the UNESCO on the "World Natural Heritage List".
 


( Peach flowers blossom in early Spring.)

It is renowned all around the world by its natural wonders of marvelous peaks and crisscrossing streams and valleys, and abundant animal and plant species. This place is characterized by a mild temperature and adequate rainfall, devoid of extremely hot summer and cold winter. 
Zhangjiajie has pleasant climate, its environment and air quality also provide visitors a chance to breathe healthy air which is believed to be rich in negative oxygen. It is also believed that hypertension patient may have their blood pressure lowered if they stay in the park for a period of time. This is due to the fact that dust particles in the park are 88% lower and the air 10% mistier than outside. 
 
It is mysterious and profound when the Park is in misty rain. After rain, the skies clear up and the cloud rolls up and mist rushes down, the peaks seem like losing in the cloud. Yet when the sunshine comes out the sky is high and the clouds are pale. In distance the mountain forest is spotlessly clean. It likes a water and color painting in front of the visitors.
 


The peaks of varied shapes are the main attractiveness of Zhangjiajie. In this area, three thousand peaks rise on the primitive field and the valleys here are decorated with eight hundred winding streams. All over the mountains, there are thick woods and the forest coverage here is as high as 97%. Zhangjiajie is the combination of woods, caves, lakes, waterfalls and the integration of marvel, beauty, serenity and danger. So it is a magnificent masterpiece of nature. 
 
The varied landforms help to turn Zhangjiajie into a treasure house of biological resources. There are a lot of woody plants and vertebrate species here, including 56 national protected plants such as gingko, yew, oriental cherry; 40 species of animals under state protection, such as giant salamander, unicorn, South-China tiger, clouded leopard, civet and so on. This area also produces precious herbs as ganoderma, Polygonum multiflorum Thunb, so on and so forth. 
 


In the Zhangjiajie region, there are more than twenty ethnic groups living here, such as Han, Miao, Bai, Tujia, to name just a few. So this place is also proud of varied national customs, in which, the most representative ones must be the Baishou Dance, Maogusi Dance of Tujia ethnic group, Zhanggu Dance of the Bai ethnic group and Jielong Dance of the Miao ethnic group. The Tujia brocade and purple-clay pottery produced in this area are also very famous. In addition, the colorful folk houses such as Tujia stockaded village and suspending wooden building of the Miao ethnics add glamour to the natural landscape.

Attractions:
 
Golden Whip Stream (Jinbianxi)
  

 


Golden Whip Stream (Jinbianxi) is located in Zhangjiajie National Forest Park, it extends 7.5 km from north to south, winding across mountains and valleys. The brook is limpid through the year, with stone peaks standing erect on both banks. In Golden Whip Stream you can enjoy the dense forest and grotesque-shaped peaks on either of its bank. If you get tired, you can rest on a rock by the stream and watch fish swimming in the water. The park is a place for one to escape from the summer heat, and is a natural oxygen bar.

Meandering between steep grotesque peaks and luxuriant trees, streams, waterfalls, plants and animals co-exist here and constitute an extraordinarily beautiful, tranquil and natural ecological environment.

The Yellow Lion Village (Huangshi zhai)
 


The Yellow Lion Village (Huangshi zhai), named after a hermit Huangshi, is the highest village in the Zhangjiajie area.It covers an area of about 16.7 hectares, and is about 1,100m above sea level.

At its peak, the village is actually a 1,200 metre high plateau. Stone steps lead to the top, a quiet area relatively free of tourists from which you can witness the beautiful karst formations of the local crags.

It provides the largest sightseeing terrace in Wulingyuan, and is characterized by overhanging cliffs, high staking platforms, jagged rocks and elegant apexes.

Standing on the terrace, one can have the panoramic view of all kinds of queer pinnacles and numerous grotesque peaks which resemble a clear, crystalline jadeite.

Huanglong Cave


It has another name--Huanglong Spring, situated in east part of Suoxiyu County and 7km far away from the county. The whole length of it is about 12km, and it has 4 stories. There are dry caves and watery caves including 2 palaces, 8 halls and 96 corridors. Various stalactites fill the whole cave. The most amazing spectacle is that when you knock the stalactites in the Shiqing Mountain of the cave, you will hear the wonderful sound made by the stalactites. Moreover, there is an 11km long cave and a 50m high waterfall which are rare in the other caves.

Yuanjiajie


Located in the northwest part of the Zhangjiajie National Forest Park, Yuanjiajie is a naturally formed platform mountain, surrounded by higher summits which are divided by deep valleys.

Added to this scene is an array of amazing lesser peaks and grotesque rocks.

Each one stands in the valley and possesses its own peculiar shape.

The foremost attractions in this area include: Back Garden, breathtaking Mihun Stage, the First Bridge in the World and the controversial Bailong Elevator which is to be demolished after being complained by UNESCO.

Tianzi Mountain


Named after Xiang Dakun who led the local farmers' revolt and called himself Tianzi---the Son of Heaven (Emperor).

Tianzi Mountain, with the highest peak at 1,260 meters, provides stunning views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. Waterfalls, bridges, stone forests and caves are found throughout the mountains.

Tianzi Mountain is known for 4 natural spectacles - the clouds of mist that circle the mountains, amazing views of the rising sun, moonlit nights and snowcapped winter peaks.
 
Baofeng Lake

 
Embraced by continuous mountains, the artificial Baofeng Lake (Treasure-Peak Lake) is located in the Suoxiyu Scenic Area in the south of Suoxiyu Town of Zhangjiajie. Originally known as Shijiayu Reservoir, the Baofeng Lake was later named after Baofeng Mountain (Treasure-Peak Mountain) and opened to tourists.

Reputed as the abode of fairy mother goddess on earth, the Baofeng Lake is a rare high gorges lake and shaped by surrounding mountains into a narrow strip. It covers an area of 30 hectares and has a depth of 72 meters. Lying in mountains, the Baofeng Lake is filled by streams without pollution. The lake has a fascinating landscape with surrounding mountains and a mid-lake island.

Some 20 sight-spots spread around the Baofeng Lake, including Baofeng Waterfall, One Line Gorge, plank road built along cliffs in clouds, Hawk Nest Village, and Nanhai. Located at the mouth of the Baofeng Lake, the Baofeng Waterfall pours down from midair of a hundred meters high with thunderous sound. Walking along the plank road built in the precipitous cliffs, one will find the Hawk Nest Village, a mountain that is 1,000 meters above sea level. A Kwan-yin Temple with antique flavors is built on the mountain and attracts many pious men and women who hope to get rid of worries and pray for blessings. The 680-meter Hawk Beak Peak stands to the northwest of the lake with steep cliffs and towering ancient trees. Due to its strategic location and difficult of access, it has been a perfect place entrenched in by gangsters in the past dynasties. Following the steps up to the top of the One Line Gorge and looking far into the distance, one will find the whole magnificent Wulingyuan landscape is right before one's eyes.
 
Tianmen Mountain
  

 
Tianmen Mountain, a famous mountain first recorded in the history of Zhangjiajie, is at an elevation of 1518.6 meters.It is only 8 kilometers far from the downtown and is one of the most representative natural sceneries of Zhangjiajie.

For a long time, Tianmen Mountain not only attracts the attention of the people by its miraculous and unique geographic landform and unparalleled natural landscape, it is also well known for its profound cultural connotations and famous colorful humanistic sites. It is revered as the soul of culture and spirit of Zhangjiajie and reputed as Number One Miraculous Mountain in Western Hunan.

The main body of Tianmen Mountain is uniquely skyscraping and domineering. Tianmen Cave, the natural mountain-penetrating karst cave with the highest elevation in the world, hangs on the towering cliff. The cave becomes the unique sight under heaven and breeds the profound and grand Heaven Culture and Culture of Fairy Mountain in the local area.
 
Zhangjiajie National Park Quick Focus:
Address: Zhangjiajie City, Hunan Province
Admission:CNY 248
Telephone: 86-744-8222022
Transport:There are long-distance buses to Zhangjiajie in Changsha Western Station from 7:30~20:3 at half hour intervals.
There are trains going to Zhangjiajie at the Changsha Railway Station.The detailed information is listed in the table below.
Hotel: Xiangdian International Hotel
Located in Zhangjiajie National Forest Park, the Xingdian International Hotel features a traditional Hunan building layout, providing guestrooms with breathtaking mountain views.