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Weather: It is cold and dry in December, and Chinese people stay home during this month. December is the second coldest month of the year in Zhangjiajie. The average high temperature during the month is 12 °C (54 °F), and the average low temperature is about 4 °C (39 °F).
It occasionally snows lightly, and when it does you'll enjoy the beautiful snow. There is only about 28 mm of rain or snow during the entire month, and precipitation falls about 8 days of the month.
Clothing: Bring a thick coat to stay warm. Windy days are even colder, so you'll need a head covering and gloves.
When it is cold outside, you can keep warm in Yellow Dragon Cave. It is one of Asia's largest caves. The rocks, stalactites and stalagmites are brightly and colorfully highlighted.
When you walk in the cave, you'll see the glittering and fantastically shaped rocks and hear the musical sounds of the water drops. The cave system is so big; there is even a boat tour inside on the underground stream.
The cave is damp inside, and the walking paths are slick. So wear shoes with good traction if you go for a walk.
In December, the mists and fog drift among the tall spires of Zhangjiajie National Forest Park creating an Avatar-like world. The cable car will help you see the beautiful scenery. You'll see the quartzite rock spires thrusting up from the fog below.
These rock formations are fairly unique in the world, and the area was named a UNESCO Geopark to highlight the unusual geology. The park was also honored with World Heritage listing in 1990.
You can keep warm and have a good workout hiking up the stairs on Tianmen Mountain. A hike all the way to the top is a two or three hour exertion.
At the top of the mountain, there is a glass sidewalk that is suspended a kilometer above the valley below. It is 600 meters long and hugs the side of the peak. It is a terrifying walk for many people when they look down past their feet to the ground. A hike would be something you'll remember for a long time.
December is the start of the winter season when few tourists go. You can enjoy the beautiful scenery with more tranquility.
Hotel accommodations and flight and train tickets are less expensive and readily available. Prices may be as much as 1/2 that of the high season in September and October.