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Though located in the south, Sichuan is abundant in winter destinations due to its landform. In the middle there is Sichuan Basin and in the northern and western part there are high mountains and magnificent glaciers. Traveling Sichuan in winter, you can have fun skiing, skating, hiking up snow mountains, trekking across glaciers and it is also the best time to feel the Spring Festival atmosphere in China. Below are the top attraction we specially selected for your Sichuan winter trip, including best UNESCO World Nature or Culture Heritage sites, nature reserves, snow mountains, and other types.
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Performance at Wuhou Temple Fair
Jinli Old Street with Red Lanterns On
Entering the low season of travelling Chengdu, winter is an ideal time to go there because there will be fewer tourists while visiting the same appealing attractions such as Chengdu Panda Base, Jinli Old Street and Chengdu People’s Park.
What’s more, with the New Year and Spring Festival approaching, people can gradually notice the festive atmosphere around Chengdu city. Streets and shops are in new-year decoration with colorful lights, red lanterns are hung in the attractions and people are in joy expecting the holiday. There will be a grand temple fair held in Wuhou Memorial Temple every year lasting for nearly 20 days from several days before the Spring Festival to the Lantern Festival (15th of the first lunar month). At that time, there will be many traditional Chinese handcrafts for sale and a series of celebrating activities. >>Chengdu Winter Travel
Xiling Snow Mountain
Skating at Xiling Ski Resort
• Type: World Natural Heritage; National AAAA Tourist Attraction; Snow Mountain; Ski Resort.
• Ticket: CNY 120/person (not including charged activities in ski resort)
• Opening Hours: 9:00-18:00
• Recommended Visiting Time: 1 - 2 days
• Location: Xiling Town, Dayi County, Chengdu, Sichuan (四川省成都市大邑县西岭镇)
Located only about 110km, 2.5 hours’ drive from Chengdu City, Xiling Snow Mountain is one of the most popular winter destinations in Sichuan with convenient transportation, rich winter activities and snow landscape. The scenic spot covers an area of 483 km² and the altitude varies from 1260m to 5364m. It is rich in tourism resources with unpredictable mountain meteorological landscapes, boundless primitive forest, countless exotic flowers and plants, rare birds and animals, and flowing torrents and waterfalls, forming a spectacular and mysterious mountain natural site.
Winter here is the world of ice and snow, the kingdom of fairy tales. From the beginning of December to the end of March of the next year, the snow here can be more than 60 cm thick. As the largest alpine ski resort in South China, Xiling Snow Mountain provides over 20 activities in ski field for visitors to completely enjoy the excitement of ski sports such as alpine skiing, snowmobiling, snake-shaped sledding, snow flying saucer, dog drawn sled, etc.
Recommended Xiling Snow Mountain Tours:
Crystal-clear Haizi with the Decoration of Snow
Frozen Waterfall in Jiuzhaigou Valley
• Type: World Heritage Site, Natural Park, Geopark, Nature Reserve, National AAAA Tourist Attraction
• Ticket: CNY 169 (April 1-November 15) & CNY 80 (November 16-March 31 next year) (sightseeing bus excluded)
• Opening Hours: 08:00--17:00
• Recommended Visiting Time: 1-2 days
• Location: Zhangzha Town, Jiuzhaigou County, Ngawa (Aba) Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan (四川省阿坝藏族羌族自治州九寨沟县漳扎镇)
Jiuzhaigou Valley has enjoyed a worldwide reputation for many years. The turquoise & emerald crystal lakes, layered waterfalls, authentic Tibetan villages and towering peaks all make it an attractive place to explore.
In winter, Jiuzhaigou becomes more peaceful and poetic under the makeup of ice and snow. The magnificent Nuorilang Waterfall has frozen while Haizi (lake) in Jiuzhaigou keeps their vitality as usual. The mountains and woods are covered in silver, the running waterfalls are turned into ice sculptures, and the green lakes are decorated with blue ice. This is what Jiuzhaigou looks like in winter, a fairyland on earth. Walking on the plank road, you can see silver branches all around. Without the burden of fallen leaves, the branches are full of snow grains. It's very beautiful. Jiuzhaigou in winter may not be as colorful as other seasons, but this is also what makes it special. >>Jiuzhaogou Winter Travel
A World of Snow - Mount Emei
Golden Summit on Mount Emei
• Type: World Heritage Site, Taoist Mountains, Nature & Wildlife Areas, Historic Walking Areas, Nature & Parks, Sights & Landmarks
• Ticket: CNY 160 (January 16 - December 14); CNY 110 (December 15 to next January 15)
• Opening Hours: all day
• Best Time to Visit: April to October
• Recommended Visiting Time: 1-2 days
• Location: NO. 41 Minshan South Road, Emeishan City, Leshan City, Sichuan (四川省乐山市峨眉山市民山南路41号)
Mount Emei, one of the four greatest Buddhist mountains in China, has long been praised by both ordinary tourists and religious followers. If there is a time that you can not miss about Mount Emei, it must be winter.
Snow is not unique to Mount Emei. However, the beauty of the snow scene here is. The snowflakes in the early winter of Emei will freeze on the tree branches and building eaves, melting slowly in the sunshine while showing you a bright world. Due to its unique geographical location, altitude and climate conditions, the snowscape of Emei Mountain is vertically distributed like its vegetation. Unlike the heavy snow that suddenly covers the whole earth in the north or the gentle one slowly falling down in the south, the snow scene of Mount Emei is a perfect combination of the two. You can feel the difference as you hike up the mountain and when you finally reach the Golden Summit, you will have a spectacular view beyond words. If you are into ski sports, there is a ski resort at Leidongping that will meet your demands. >>Emeishan Winter Travel
Hailuogou Primative Forest in Winter
Red Rock Shoal at Hailuogou
• Type: National Nature Preserve, National Geo-park, National Forest Park, National AAAAA Tourist Attraction
• Ticket: CNY 90/person (Tourist Sightseeing Bus & Cableway excluded)
• Opening Hours: 08:00-14:30
• Recommended Visiting Time: 1-2 days
• Location: Moxi Town, Luding County, Garze Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan (四川省甘孜藏族自治州泸定县磨西镇)
Hailuogou is located on the east slope of Gongga mountain, on the east edge of Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. It is famous for the six wonders: snow mountain, icy glacier, misty cloud, dense forest, hot spring and red stone. Crystal clear glaciers spread down from the high valley; huge ice holes and precipitous ice bridges are like the scene of a Crystal Palace in the myth. There are large amount of mineral springs, vast area of virgin forest and high ice eroded peaks. In particular, the unparalleled great ice waterfall, with a height of more than 1000 meters and a width of about 1100 meters, is more than ten times larger than the famous Huangguoshu waterfall, which is magnificent and extraordinary.
Hailuogou in winter is completely different from what it is like in other seasons. Throughout the winter, Hailuogou is covered with ice and snow, and Hailuogou Glacier has regained its true features. Here you can appreciate the snowscape as in Yabuli, rime as in Jilin, and sunshine as in Hainan. With the purest blue sky and the unique good air in the Tibetan area; the winter here gathers the most beautiful and charming scenery between the heaven and the earth.
Bipenggou Valley in Winter Sunshine
Longwang Lake at Bipenggou Valley
• Type: Nature Reserve, Mountains and Lakes
• Ticket: CNY 70 (tourist bus and battery cart not included)
• Opening Hours: 7:00-16:00
• Recommended Visiting Time: 1 day
• Location: Putou Town, Li County, Aba Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture, Sichuan (四川省阿坝藏族羌族自治州理县朴头镇)
Bipenggou is a large-scale original eco-tourism scenic spot which is famous for its beautiful natural scenery, perfect natural ecological landscape and excellent ecological environment. Tourists here can go sightseeing, hiking, mountaineering and skating. This scenic area integrates the scenery of typical plateau and crisscross glacier, steep peak and deep gorge and has a wide variety of wild animals and plants. The ancient glaciers here are rare both at home and abroad: a forest of horned peaks, a huge ice cellar, rough glacial grooves, and a myriad of cirques give a full display of its magnificent grandeur, which make Bipenggou a paradise for tourists.
The magical winter scenery of Bipenggou lingers in the memory of the visitors who have been there. Apart from the snowscape, Bipenggou is the best place for ice and snow entertainment in low latitude area of South China. With high-quality snow, complete skating equipment and colorful winter activities, thousands of people can have fun here at the same time. Besides, Bipenggou has rich hot spring resources to refresh your mind and body and drive the coldness away.
Zigong Lantern Fair
Zigong Dinosaur Museum
• Type: Traditional Culture & Art, Lantern Fair
• Ticket: CNY 70-160 (vary from year to year)
• Opening Days: About 2 months around Chinese Spring Festival
• Recommended Visiting Time: 1 day
• Location: Zigong City is about 200 km, 3 hours' drive to the southeast of Chengdu
Lantern Festival is a kind of traditional Chinese folk cultural activity which dates back to the Western Han Dynasty (202 B.C. - A.D 8) and later develops into an indispensable annual event for people to express their hopes and pray for a good year. Among all the lantern fairs in the land of China, Zigong Lantern Festival stands out, gathering the charm of Chinese lantern culture and winning the reputation of "the best lantern fair in the world".
Zigong Lantern Festival usually lasts about 2 months around Chinese Spring Festival. One of its most remarkable features of is that dozens of large and medium-sized group lanterns and thousands of artificial lanterns will be present. The grand scale forms a sea of colorful lights, which looks like a fairyland. Another place you can go to besides appreciating the lantern fair is Zigong Dinosaur Museum. It is the first professional Dinosaur Museum in China and is rated as "the best Dinosaur Museum in the world" by National Geographic of the United States. The museum's collection of fossil specimens almost covers all the known dinosaur species in the Jurassic period, 205-135 million years ago. This kind of mysterious creature always attracts people and this is one of the best places to know them.
Recommended Zigong Tour:
Besides the attractions mentioned above with seasonal differences, Sichuan has so many wonderful scenic sites to visit in any season you like. As the hometown of pandas, you can go to visit the panda bases in Sichuan, have a volunteer experience, and even feed the pandas. If you are interested in Buddhism, you can make a trip to Leshan and appreciate the majestic Giant Buddha there. If you are a museum-goer, visiting the museums and getting to know the “Shu” Culture from the solemn Jinsha Site Museum to Sichuan Cuisine Museum and make Mapo Tofu and panda buns...
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[Important] Travel News for Expats: China travel is reopening now! Travel with China Discovery and learn about where to visit & requirements for each destination! Read Details >