Zhangajiajie National Forest Park
Type: Forests, Scenic/ Historic Walking Areas
Sites: Huangshi Village, Golden Whip Stream, Yuanjiajie
Zhangjiajie National Forest Park, set up in 1982, located at 32 kilometers(19 miles) from Zhangjiajie city,is the first authorized national forest park in China. The area covers 480 thousand square meters (185 square miles). This park, together with Suoxi Valley Nature Reserve, Tianzi Mountain Nature Reserve and Yangjiajie Scenic Area makes up the Wulingyuan Scenic and Historic Interest Area, also known as Zhangjiajie Scenic Spot.
Zhangjiajie National Forest Park has been described differently since it appeared in public, such as majestic, eccentric, tranquil, delicate and wild. The park features grotesque peaks, lucid brooks, abundant fauna and floras and hospitable climate. It contains several main tourist sites: Huangshi Village, Golden Whip Stream, Yuanjiajie, Yaozi Village, Pipa Stream and so on.
★Yellow Stone Stronghold (Huangshi Village)
Yellow Stone Stronghold, also known as Yellow Stone Village or Huangshizhai,
occupying an area of 41 acres and 1,200 meters (0.8 miles) above sea level, this stronghold is the largest observing spot of the forest park. One cannot claim to have completed a Zhangjiajie National Forest Park tour without visiting Yellow Stone Stronghold. If you have enough time, watch the marvelous sunrise here.The main attraction spots include Tranquil Trail in Fir Woods, Imperial Edict and the Precious Box, Needle Peak, the Southern Gate to Heaven, Five-Finger Peak and so on.
★Golden Whip Stream
It is famous for its pristine water, verdant mountains, steep cliffs and its serene valley. As a veritable "paradise" for plants, its pathways are adorned by an abundance of flowers, trees, and grasses. Sceneries along the Golden Whip Stream are most enchanting in the Zhangjiajie National Forest Park. Named after the Golden Whip Rock which it flows by, this stream, 5.7 kilometers long (3.5 miles), joins the Lute stream in the west and Suoxi Stream in the east. A 300-meter (984 feet) walk from the gate of the park will lead you to the entrance of the Golden Whip Stream. Flanked by ridges and peaks, the crystal clear water makes it possible to observe every action of the fish in the water. Wild flowers are in abundance here.
On the way, girls from Tujia will present visitors traditional folk songs when requested. The main attraction spots here include: the Welcoming Guests Rock, Golden Whip Rock, Reunion Rock and the Purple Grass Pond.
The northern part of the Zhangjiajie National Forest Park is the essential tourist route. Yuanjiajie is a natural platform that faces giant rocks rising from deep valleys and surrounded by higher mountains. Unique in their shapes and covered with pine trees, these rocks form a vivid Chinese painting.It's main attraction spots include: Back Garden, breath taking Mihun Stage, the First Bridge under the Sun and Avatar Hallelujah Mountain (previously called Southern Sky Column). The director and production designers of Avatar were inspired by the photos of Southern Sky Column and then designed Na'vi people's home Hallelujah Mountain in the film. In January of 2010, the Southern Sky Column was renamed to its current name.
The weather belongs to the sub-tropical climate of Central Asia. Splendid mountains and luxuriant trees help form a favorable climate: warm in winter and cool in summer. The average temperature all year is 13℃ (55F), the highest is around 17℃ (62F ) while the lowest temperature reaches to 10℃(50F) in winter. The charm of the park varies with the alternation of seasons; therefore, it attracts visitors all year round. Besides, the dust particles in the park are 88% lower and the air 10% mistier than outside,and also provide visitors a chance to breathe healthy and rich in negative oxygen air. It is also believed that hypertension patient may have their blood pressure lowered if they stay in the Zhangjiajie National Forest Park for a period of time.
About 98% of the area is covered with plants. There are 720 species of the 102 families, including+ five most important floras, namely, the rose family, pulse family, grass family, composite family and orchid family. Some of these trees are rare and regarded as national treasure. For example, the Dove tree, known as living fossil, can be traced back as early as the Fourth Ice Age. The great variety of plants in Zhangjiajie National Forest Park takes up 82% of all the flora families in Hunan Province.
Zhangjiajie National Forest Park also boasts a variety of animals. Exuberant forests offer them ideal habitats to live in and procreate their own species. There are more than 149 kinds of chordate animals inhabitants in this park. Among them, 28 kinds are under national protection, amongst which, are the Golden Pheasant, Rhesus Monkey, Giant Salamander and Musk Deer.
Get to Zhangjiajie National Forest Park
Zhangjiajie Central Bus Station (near Zhangjiajie Railway Station) has regular tourist buses to Wulingyuan every a few minutes and the bus journey takes about 40 minutes. Bus fare is around CNY 12.
Accommodation in Zhangjiajie National Park
There are hotels and inns in the park and near the Wulingyuan Entrance, most of which do not provide toiletries. A standard double-bed room costs CNY 300 or so. Suoxi Shanju Light Luxury Resort Hotel is a good recommendation.
Zhangjiajie National Forest Park Entrance Fee
Entrance FeeMarch to November: CNY 225 for adults and CNY 160 for children between 1.3 - 1.5 meters (4.3 - 4.9 feet)
December to February: CNY 115 for adults and CNY 85 for children between 1.3 - 1.5 meters
Free entry for children below 1.3 meters but they need to pay CNY 65 for the battery car.
1. With the validity of three consecutive days from March to November and four consecutive days from December to next February, the admission fee includes Zhangjiajie National Forest Park, Tianzi Mountain Nature Reserve, Suoxi Valley Nature Reserve, Yangjiajie Scenic Area and the battery car.
2. Tourists can pay CNY 3 to buy the insurance.
Ticket prices for other attractions:
King Dragon Cave: CNY 65
Baofeng Lake: CNY 96
Yellow Dragon Cave: CNY 100
West Hunan Folk Custom Performance: CNY 228/ 268/ 308
Fees for elevator, cable car and tourist train
Bailong Sightseeing Elevator (Single Trip)：CNY 72; CNY 43 for children between 1.3 - 1.5m.
Yellow Stone Village Cable Car
Single Trip: CNY 65; CNY 40 for children between 1.3 - 1.5m.
Round Trip: CNY 118; CNY 70 for children between 1.3 - 1.5m.
Tianzi Mountain Cable Car (Single Trip)：CNY 72; CNY 43 for children between 1.3 - 1.5m.
Yangjiajie Cable Car (Single Trip)：CNY 76; CNY 46 for children between 1.3 - 1.5m.
Ten-mile Gallery Tourist Train (Single Trip)：CNY 38; CNY 24 for children between 1.2 (3.9 ft) and 1.5m.