If you’re travelling to China, or are thinking of doing so, you will be spoiled for choice. Having lived and grown up in China for some of my early life, I have had the fortune of experiencing a culture and seeing some amazing sights that I would not have otherwise known of. China has a long and rich history and some of the most beautifully scenic places of Asia. In no particular order, here are only some of the beautiful places in China. From geographical marvels to man-made wonders, the rural endeavours and historical splendours of this massive country are plentiful.
We start off in the Danxia (‘dan-sshyaa’ meaning ‘red cloud’) landscape just outside of the city of Zhangye in Northern China. As a geographical marvel, the area is home to the rainbow mountains. These Mountains were was once part of the ocean some 50 million years ago. The colours are a result of the sedimentary layers of sandstone and rock that have formed layers over a thousand years per layer to form. It is definitely worth taking a trip to see these breathtaking views of the beauty that nature can produce in these several hundred feet high mountains. This is truly one of the most naturally colourful places in China.
Also known as the Thousand Island lake, Qiandao lake is a man-made freshwater lake located in the Zhejiang province. Here you’ll find the most amazingly scenic views of water covering around 221 square miles. Also beneath these vast lakes are the ruins of an ancient city known as the Lion City.
Chengdu is the capital of the Sichuan province in Southwest China. It is home to the Leshan Giant Buddha and the Chengdu research base of Giant Panda breeding.
- The Leshan Giant Buddha was built during the Tang dynasty. It is carved out of a cliff face on the Min river and stands (or more appropriately sits) at 71 meters tall as the world’s largest stone-carved Buddha. This scenic gargantuan statue is a must see. Side note: you can find more giant Buddhas in Luoyang.
- No less is the Giant Panda research base a stop to make on this trip at a rare chance to see one of the endangered animals of our time in its natural habitat. You can even stroke them through the gates (with plastic gloves provided on site, of course)!
One of the more ancient places in China is the capital city of Xi’an. The city is located in the Shaanxi province, which has much cultural and historical significance for China. The area was the starting point for the Silk Road – the legendary trading route between the East and the West. Another special place to visit is the home of the Terracotta warriors of the Qin dynasty. The first emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang built the army because he believed their spirits would protect him in the afterlife. The clay army sit in pits that are estimated to contain as many as 8,000 figures in all. The vast scale of this clay army is unfathomable and is truly one of the top places in China to visit.
The Great Wall of China
An obvious choice! The Great Wall of China is among the seven wonders of the world and not one to be missed if you’re visiting China. Need I make my case any further? Favoured as a hiking spot by many because of its scale and scenery, you’ll be sure to get a good workout as you trek this architectural splendour. Built as a defence against invaders to protect China’s empire, it winds for more than 5,500 miles across China’s vast landscape.
Shilin stone forest
One of the most unique places in China and ancient land forms in the worl is the Shilin stone forest. It is located near Kunming city in the Yunnan province. Made up of rows of incredible limestone formations, this stone forest was created over a period of some 270 million years. This is definitely a place worthy of visiting!
Let us know your top priority place to visit from this list in the comments!
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Lauren is a freelance writer who aspires to be an editor-in-chief of her own publication. Her interests lie in culture, people and behaviour. Her favourite exercise routine is laughing (it really works the abs!).