Jiuzhaigou Scenic Spot
Being the only Chinese scenic spot listed as both the World Heritage Site and the World Biosphere Reserve, the Jiuzhaigou Scenic Area lies in Nanping County of Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture of Aba in Sichuan Province, at the foot of south Minshan Mountain.
As a source branch of the Jialing River belonging to the Yangtze River system, Jiuzhaigou covers 720 square kilometers, and is some 400 kilometers south of Chengdu. With a development area of 140 square kilometers, the Jiuzhaigou Scenic Area gains its name from its nine Tibetan villages, centering in Nuorilang and comprising three valleys, namely Shuzhenggou, Rizegou and Zezhawagou. The three valleys are 14km, 17km and 18km in length, respectively. Jiuzhaigou is famous for its ancient and mysterious scenery, encompassing snow-capped mountains, forest, grasslands, waterfalls, streams, and lakes. Colorful lakes and various waterfalls are special scenes in Jiuzhaigou, with the first scene as the Pearl Shoal, the most beautiful lake as the Five Flower Lake, also known as the Peacock Lake, the largest lake as the Long Lake and the smallest lake as the Five Color Pool. These four scenes are the most splendid ones in Jiuzhaigou.The Pearl Shoal Waterfall
Reputed as the first scenery in Jiuzhaigou, the Pearl Shoal Waterfall is located above Jinghai (Mirror Sea) and beneath Jinlinghai (Gold Bell Sea) in Rizegou. It is the most beautiful site in Jiuzhaigou, with an altitude of 2,433 meters and a height of 21 meters. On the top of the waterfall, it measures 162.5 meters in width. With a fall of 40 meters, the waterfall has a shape of the crescent. It surges down from the Pearl Shoal with a thunderous sound, splashing up sprays of waves. The Pearl Shoal Waterfall is one of the distinctive waterfalls in China. Nuorilang Waterfall
The Nuorilang Waterfall is located at the end of the Shuzhenggou, with an altitude of 2,365 meters, 270 in width and 24.5 in height. It is the widest waterfall in China, and also one of China's largest calcium ones. The name of Nuorilang means magnificent and splendid in Tibetan language. The grand waterfall turns into gorgeous rainbows in the sunshine. Shuzheng Waterfall
The Shuzheng Waterfall is located in Shuzhenggou, above Shuzheng Lakes and beneath the Tiger Sea, with an altitude of 2,295 meters, a height of 25 meters and a width of 72 meters at the top. Blocked by trees in the upper lake, it turns into streams of water dashing against protruding rocks midway and exploding into millions of petal-shaped falls. Viewed from the distance, it looks like a water lily bursting in the blue sky.Xiongmaohai Waterfall (Panda Lake Waterfall)
With an altitude of 2,592 meters and a height of 78 meters, the Panda Lake Waterfall has its source in the Panda Lake and is linked to the Five Flower Lake through a 3-kilometer-long plank road built along cliffs. It has the greatest fall among waterfalls in Jiuzhaigou, with the top 50 meters water in three curves. In winter, the waterfall turns into an ice curtain. In the world of ice and snow, huge icicles and various ice stalactites hang here and there in the valley and water-eroded caves.Wucaichi
One kilometer down Changhai is Wucaichi. The road between them is 3,000 meters above the sea level, and Wucaichi is hidden in the deep valley below the road. Wucaichi is world famous for its graceful rich colors, pureness and transparency. Covering an area of 5,646 square meters, it is 2,995 meters above the sea level and 6.6 meters in depth. In icy winter, the water in the lake still flows with gentle ripple even though the land has been frozen. And although rainy and drought seasons alternates, the volume of the lake's water does not indicate any changes. It turns out that the water in the lake is supplied through underground channels from Changhai, which is higher than it. Since the soil deep under the ground maintains normal temperature all the year round, the volume of the water supplied remains steady throughout the year. In Wucaichi, the grain of the rocks on the lake floor can be clearly seen thanks to the transparent water as blue as gems.
Wucaichi is the essence of Jiuzhaigou's lakes. In the lake, there are water plants, such as spirogyra, chlorophyta and water ferns, as well as herbaceous plants, such as reeds, equisetum ramosissimum, and water Juncus effuses. Since the plants contain different amount of chlorophyll, they display different colors in the water rich in calcium carbonate. Additionally, different areas in the same lake may be blue, green, yellow, blue and purple light. The color of the later varies to make it even more beautiful. When the sun is high in the sky, red, golden and blue ripples may appear on the water surface after wind blows or a stone is thrown into the water.
Although Wucaichi is the smallest among numerous lakes in Jiuzhaigou, it is the richest in color. Its water is so limpid that even the grain of the stones on the lake floor can be seen. Thanks to different colors of the deposits on the lake floor and the plants on the shore, the lake's surface, which is originally blue, is gorgeous with various colors.Wuhua sea
Wuhuahai is 2,472 meters above the sea level and five meters in depth. Renowned as a "fabulous spectacle" and "essence" of Jiuzhaigou, it is the pride of the whole scenic area. In the lake, the same water area can display various splendid colors, such as light yellow, dark green, deep blue and navy blue. And the color created by the nature is bold, strong and full of variation.
Wuhuahai is the most magnificent scenic spot in Jiuzhaigou. When autumn comes, the slopes around are enveloped by gorgeous colors that outshine other scenic spots in Jiuzhaigou. In Wuhuahai, water plants with colorful leaves mostly converge nearby the outlet of the lake and shine like raging flames. Under the sun, the water rich in calcium carbonate and the water plants containing different amount of chlorophyll turns to various splendid colors, such as azure blue, dark green and bluish yellow. The reflection of the red, yellow and greens trees and bushes on the shore and the wood and plant underneath water also set off each other. In fact, Wuhuahai was named because of its extraordinary beauty. Therefore, local people said Wuhuahai is a divine lake and wherever its water flows, there will be exuberate flowers and plants, as well as beautiful scenery and prosperity.
Remark: Distance between major scenic spots:
Entrance - Nuorilang (14.6 kilometers), Nuorilang - Changhai(17.8 kilometers),Nuorilang - Rize(9 kilometers);Entrance--County town of Jiuzhaigou (42 kilometers), Entrance—Huanglong Temple(128 kilometers)
A tourist can take the sightseeing bus at the entrance and get off at Nuorilang, then change the bus to arrive at Huahai or the virgin forest, and then visit the scenic spots one by one along the gully. The visit can also walk throughout the tour and admire the scenic spot in a leisured way.
Also more in Jiuzhaigou:
- Swan Lake
- Precious Mirror Cliff
- Shuzheng Lake
- Flame Lake
- Panda Lake
- The Rhinocernos Lake
- Zhenzhu Waterfall