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China Travel Guide: Sichuan Heaven on Earth


  • China
  • China Tours
  • Travel to China

Our Expert



CTS Horizons is the UK's number one operator for China and beyond. We offer superb private journeys and tailor-made holidays to the world's most fascinating destinations!

7 Places you cannot miss when visiting China in Sichuan, one of the most important and well-known provinces. Not only for its famous spicy food but for its traditional culture, beautiful cities, and stunning natural scenery.

1. Chengdu 成都
Chengdu is Sichuan province capital. Chengdu and its surroundings are also known as the "Country of Heaven" (天府之国 Tiānfǔ zhi Guó). There are many places worth visiting. Jinli Ancient Street is a famous snack street and one of the oldest in Chengdu. With its unique and picturesque atmosphere, it is the ideal place to take a walk in the evening.
Another attraction is Sichuan Opera. The most well-known stunt of Sichuan Opera is the Face Changing (Bianlian) where the performer can change his or her facial makeup in a second right on stage.
Finally, Jinsha Site Museum built on the original location of Jinsha Site discovered in 2001. A number of relics are now being displayed in 5 halls to show the historical culture of the ancient Chinese Shu Kingdom of about 2900-3200 years ago.
By BenBen/本本一世 - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,
2. Jiuzhaigou 九寨沟
Jiuzhaigou literally means “Nine Village Valley” in Chinese and in 1992 has been added to the World Cultural Heritage. Jiuzhaigou is well known for its natural wonders. Exceptional colourful waters, lakes and multi-level waterfalls. Located to the north of Chengdu. The site includes three valleys all accessible both by shuttle bus and boardwalks. In the park, there are 17 waterfalls, and numerous springs and lakes. This area is also home to a huge variety of wild animals and with its unique scenery has been branded a "fairytale land".
3. Giant Panda Breeding Research Base
Located in the north of Chengdu, the Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding was opened in 1993. It is China's most important research base for the protection of endangered wildlife (red pandas, black-necked crane, white crane) and especially of the giant panda. 
There are many facilities for Pandas breeding and activities, a museum, a research building. There are large areas for pandas to be free to roam and is a great experience for every tourist.

sichuan red panda

4. Leshan Giant Buddha 乐山大佛
The great Leshan Giant Buddha with its 71 metres is the tallest Buddha sculpture in the world. It was carved in the 8th Century AD and took almost 90 years to be completed. In 1996 has been listed among the UNESCO World Heritage Sites together with Mount Emei. It towers over the Minjiang, Dadu and Qingyi Rivers. Leshan City is situated to the southwest of Chengdu and the Leshan Buddha is sitting opposite to the city of Leshan across the rivers.  
Today it is possible to take a boat or pass by the cliffs to admire it.
5. Huanglong 黄龙
Huanglong (Yellow Dragon) is a scenic area in northwestern Sichuan, extending over an area of 700 square kilometres. Has been also declared UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992. Its rare and beautiful calcite deposits created pools that have become well-known for their water's shining colours, waterfalls and hot springs. The natural reserve is also characterised by great natural diversity and hosts some endangered species, besides the Giant Panda also the Sichuan Golden Snub-nosed Monkey. 
6. Shunan Bamboo Forest National Park 蜀南竹海国家公园
Shunan Bamboo Forest is Located in South Sichuan ranging from 600 to 1000 metres height. It is renowned because scenes from the movie Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and scenes shown at the opening ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games were shot there. It also considered one of the most Beautiful Forests to visit in China with over 50 bamboo types. Shunan Bamboo Forest also attracts large amounts of visitors for its pure and fresh air and high negative oxygen ions content.
7. Mount Emei 峨眉山
Mount Emei is located in the southwest of Sichuan, close to Emeishan City. It’s listed as World Heritage Site by UNESCO for both cultural and natural heritages in 1996. Mount Emei is one of the four sacred Buddhism mountains in China.  
To find out more about Mount Emei check also our article on the Great Mountains of China.
Sichuan is incredibly famous not only in China but also in the whole world for many reasons, not least its culinary tradition like its spicy food and the beloved Hot Pot.
Make sure not to miss the opportunity to visit this Land like no other. Check our itinerary Sichuan Discovery or contact our experts to tailor-make your ideal tour to China.



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