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The Most Beautiful Places in China

China’s natural beauty is spread throughout its vast area. Our listing of the most beautiful places in China follows a north to south then westerly sweep, to keep places you could easily visit in combination together.

Most beautiful places in China map

1. Zhangye's Danxia Landscape — Rainbow Mountains

Zhangye Danxia Landscape

The Danxia landscape in Zhangye is vividly named “Rainbow Mountains” by many due to its dazzlingly colors. Danxia (丹霞 /dan-sshya/) means "red, red clouds"

The landscape is composed of curvy, layered, multihued formations, most of which are several hundred meters high. Zhangye’s Danxia covers an area of more than 510 square kilometers (200 square miles). When the sun shines on them, their colors appear in full vibrancy. It looks like an oil painting when the vast red rock formations are simply set against a pure blue sky.

Zhangye is located in China's remote west. There are no flights in or out from the city. Travelers need to transfer in the nearby city, Jiayuguan, if they take a flight. That's the reason why Zhangye is ignored by ordinary travelers, however, the place is deeply loved by photographers. 

The best time to take photo of these mountains is in the morning and during sunset, especially sunset, when the colors change continuously, showing yellow and red layers covered by a light gray layer. The best time to visit Zhangye is from June to September when the weather is most comfortable.

2. Hongcun Village — Nine Centuries Quaint

Honcun Village

Hongcun, is a picturesque village with beautiful watery scenes round its lotus ponds and bridges, as well as charmingly crafted architecture. Villagers have diverted water into "house gardens" and "water yards", which exist only in this village. The village in its breathing-taken setting looks like a Chinese painting. The village attracts many Chinese art students to practice their drawing there each year. 

Hongcun was a setting for “the best Chinese film of all time”Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.

Hongcun Village is at the foot of the Yellow Mountains, and a visit to the Village can be easily combined with a visit to the Yellow Mountains.  

3. The Yellow Mountains — Sunrises and Seas of Cloud

Sunrise, Yellow Mountain

An image of a twisting pine tree growing from a curiously-curved rock pops into Chinese minds when they hear of the Yellow Mountains.  

These mystical and mist-ical mountains are the most beautiful and most famous in China. Their classic attractions are grand dawns and their “four natural wonders”: peculiar pines, oddly-shaped rocks, seas of clouds, and hot springs.

The Yellow Mountain area lies in Anhui Province, Eastern China, about 300 km (200 miles) west of Hangzhou and 500 km (300 miles) southwest of Shanghai. There are direct flights from Shanghai to Huangshan city (only 30 minutes' flight); it takes about one hour and 30 minutes from Huangshan city to the scenic area. Bus trip from Hangzhou to Hangzhou takes a about 2.5 hours, which is the most convenient way to travel from Hangzhou. 

4. Wuyuan — China’s Most Beautiful Rural Area

Rope flowers, Wuyuan

Wuyuan is hailed by Chinese travelers as "the most beautiful countryside in China".

The classic image of Wuyuan is a rural life under colorful blossoms. The best time to visit Wuyuan is from early march to middle April when the land is covered in a yellow carpet of rape flowers. The time to watch the flowers may be slightly different each year, please check with your travel advisor when planning your trip. 

Fall foliage is another highlight of the area.

Wuyuan is located in east China's Jiangxi Province. The closest cities to Wuyuan is Jingdezhen and Huangshan (Yellow Mountain City).   

5. Xiapu — Mudflats and Traditional Seaside Life

Xiapu

Xiapu is a hidden gem, yet to be discovered by ordinary travelers. The area has picturesque mudflats and a simple lifestyle, and is deeply loved by photographers from all over the world.

The scenery changes constantly. Sometimes there is sea water, and sometimes just mud. Fishermen and seaweed harvesters make a living there, in harmony with the tides that sweep through.

6. Zhangjiajie — Precipitous Pillars

zhangjiajie Nationa Forest Park

The precipitous pillars in Zhangjiajie National Forest Park are the inspiration of the Hallelujah Mountains in Avatar.

Zhangjiajie is famous for its towering peaks, grotesque rock pillars, and deep valleys.  The forest of massive pillars is one of the best muses for photographers in China. Zhangjiajie National Forest Park is the first national park in China. 

7. The Li River & Yangshuo — China’s Most Beautiful Karst Landscapes

 Li River, Guilin

The Li River is like an artist's masterpiece, bounded by classic sheer karst hills, which have inspired many poets and ink painters. It is listed as one of the world's "Top 10 Watery Wonders" by America's National Geographic Magazine and the World's "15 Best Rivers for Travelers” by CNN Travel.

A Li River cruise from Guilin to Yangshuo is the essence of all Guilin tours, offering an easy and relaxing way to enjoy the picturesque scenery.

Chinese tourists first think of Yangshuo when looking for natural beauty.  Yangshuo is famous for its karst hills and rivers. Taking a bamboo raft or having a cycling tour into the countryside, you can enjoy the idyllic, painting-like scenes.

8. The Yuanyang Terraced Fields — Steps to Heaven

Yuyang Terraced Fields

If you are a traveler, but have never been to YuanyangYuanyang will feel sad for you; if you are a photographer, but have never been to Yuanyang, God will feel sorry for you!”

It's hard to describe the beauty of it. There are many things that you know will never be surpassed once you see their beauty. And you will find Yuanyang's terraced fields are the most beautiful terraces in the world, once you have been there.

9. Jiuzhaigou — Colorful Alpine Lakes

Jiuzhaigou

Jiuzhaigou, in remote west China, has inspired dreams of a colorful fairyland among many travelers. Jiuzhaigou features clear and multicolored lakes surrounded by vast mountain forests.

These lakes change color throughout the day and year. The colors come from the reflections of surrounding mountainsides and algae and minerals in the lakes.

Fall is the most beautiful season in Jiuzhaigou, when the landscape changes color, providing a vivid backdrop of autumnal hues — an unspoiled, dazzlingly beauty rarely rivaled in China.

10. Tibet — Sacred Buddhist Culture

Tibet Monastery

Tibet, locked in the Himalayas, holds travelers'imaginations of the lost Shangri-la. From the unspoiled sacred lakes to the world’s highest peak — Mount Everest; from the vast untouched Qiangtang Grasslands to the depths of the Yarlung-Tsangpo Canyon, the Roof of the World is filled with awe and untouched beauty. 

What about your Top 10 Most Beautiful Places in China?

We have selected these places above according our customers’ feedbacks and our own knowledge and travel experience. Don’t hesitate to tailor-make a tour according to your requirements.