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► CHINA’S SCENERY TO INSPIRE
On a good day the scenery of Huangshan ranks as China’s best with the sunrise offering the most dramatic views. We advise spending at least two nights on the mountain itself exploring the many well kept paths around the numerous sheer peaks.
There is a lot of Great Wall but some of the best is two to three hours from beijing at places such as Mutianyu, Simitai and Jingshanling. The best way to appreciate both the scenery and the Wall itself is to spend some time walking along it which we cna arrange at Jingshanling.
Tucked away in the mountains of Sichuan and generally only travelled to by plane is the stunning valley of Jiuzhaigou. Famous for its crystal clear waters and lush forests the valley itself is well organised and easy to navigate by park bus or on foot.
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Usually visited in conjunction with Jiuzhaigou the strange blue limestone pools of Huanglong National Park offer something a bit different to the usual mountain scenery of this part of China. You need to overnight around Jiuzhaigou.
Xinjiang adventure from Kashgar to Karakul Lake
The 2 to 3 day trip along this extraordinary mountain route from Kashgar to Tashkurgan is one of the world’s great drives offering unbeatable scenery at almost every turn. The usual overnight stop is in Tajik yurts at Karakul lake.
Don’t tell the people who have spent two weeks trekking to Everest Base Camp on the Nepalese side that the best views of the world’s highest mountain are actually to be had on the Tibetan side and that Base Camp can actually be driven to!
Tibet offers some stunning panoramic views of the high Himalaya and due to the high and dry climate of the Tibetan plateau there is a good chance you will get to see these mighty peaks cloud free and in all their glory as pictured above.
There are huge areas of sand dunes in the vast desert expanses of remote Western China but few are as accessible as the dunes which come right to the outskirts of Silk Road favourite Dunhuang, a small city in the West of Gansu province.
River Cruises along the Yangtze and Guilin to Yangshuo
Guilin and Yangshuo are on almost every China travel itinerary and for good reason. The karst scenery of this area is famous throughout China and the popularity of this destination thankfully doesn’t spoil the experience - a China must see!
Also highly popular is the 3 night Yangtze River cruises through the still mighty Three Gorges none of whose power and spectacle has been taken away by the completion of the massive Dam of the same name. A classic China trip.
As if Lijiang’s old world charm is not enough the nearby Snow Dragon Mountain provides the scenic contrast to the winding streets of the Old City over which this beautiful snow capped peak looms. Yet another good reason to visit Yunnan.
Dramatic Scenery from Avatar at Zhangjiajie
If you have seen the film Avatar then the scenery around Zhangjiajie will feel a little familiar. The Chinese believe that this area provided the inspiration for the floating islands in the film and it isn’t a great leap to see why.
Tiger Leaping Gorge is home to some dramatic scenery and what is best about this area is that there is a fantastic 2 day 1 night trek starting from and finishing in Lijiang that will get you right inside the scenery.
Emeishan is a sacred mountain in Sichuan famed for it’s temples, sunrise and monkeys! It is a large mountain with a well developed road, cable car and path system but despite this it still comes across as tranquil and is well worth a visit.
Shangri La (previously known as Zhongdian) is tucked away in Yunnan province’s far North West and has some stunning mountain and lake scenery as well as a distinctly Tibetan flavour to its culture - ideal if you can’t make it to Tibet itself.