Sichuan, “Chuan” for short , is the largest province in western China. Due to its abundance of natural resources, it is renowned as the “Land of Heaven.”
The Sichuan Basin and West Sichuan Plateau make up most of the province. This hometown of giant pandas has magical landscapes including Huanglong and Jiuzhaigou Valley, praised as the “Jade Pool of the world,” and Hailuogou, at the foot of the snow-white Mount Gongga.
The climate is greatly different in eastern and western Sichuan. Sichuan Basin enjoys a subtropical climate, which is humid and cold in winter and extremely hot and stuffy in summer, and very humid. Western Sichuan has a plateau mountain climate with less rainfall and colder winters.
Sichuan has a long and splendid history. The Jinsha Ruins and Sanxingdui Sites have recorded her ancient Shu civilization. The Temple of Marquis Wu and the Zhang Fei Temple represent the culture of the Three Kingdoms period, and there are many Buddhist sites, including Mount Emei, one of China’s four most famous mountains of Buddhism.
Sichuan is home to Tibetan people, Yi people and Qiang people. There are charming Tibetan villages in Danba, Qiang villages in Taopin , and the warmest and most romantic Yi Torch Festival and Gathering of Walking around Mountain in Kham.
Sichuan Province comprises 18 prefecture-level cities and 3 ethnic autonomous prefectures, including Chengdu, Guangyuan, Mianyang, Deyang, Nanchong, Guang’an, Suining, Neijiang, Leshan, Zigong, Luzhou, Yibin, Panzhihua, Bazhong,Dazhou, Ziyang, Meishan, and Ya’an as well as Aba Prefecture, Ganzi Prefecture and Liangshan Prefecture.
Chengdu is in southwest China with a long history and abundant cultural resources. It is one of China’s top national historical and cultural cities. It has been hailed as the “Land of Heaven” since ancient times.
Temple of Marquis Wu
The Temple of Marquis Wu was built to commemorate Zhuge Liang, Red walls and green old cypress trees surround it, The main buildings include Liu Bei Hall. Zhuge Liang Hall, and so on. The historical clay figures of Shu Han in the temples are wonderful.
Jinli can be considered the riverside scene of the Qingming Festival in Chengdu. Teahouses, inns, restaurants, bars, and stages stand on both sides of the streets. In addition, various local flavor snacks, crafts, other specialties and so on are sold here. There is a strong local folk culture here.
Du Fu Thatched Cottage
The Du Fu Thatched Cottage was built in honor of Du Fu, a great Tang Dynasty poet. In the cottage, the curved bridges connect and bamboo trees accentuate each other. With beautiful scenery, it provides a scholarly atmosphere .
Kuan and Zhai Alleys
An ancient Qing Dynasty street in Chengdu, Kuan and Zhai Alleys shows the relaxing and comfortable living conditions of old Chengdu. Here you can taste Sichuan cuisine, drink tea in a teahouse, walk around the streets, and experience the style of Chengdu.
Originally, the Jinsha Ruins was a city of the ancient Shu state during the Shang and Zhou dynasties. Ivory, gold wares and jade wares were unearthed here, with Golden Sun Bird relic identified as a symbol of China’s cultural heritage.
Li Bing, chief of Shu Prefecture during the Qin Dynasty, was responsible for building Dujiangyan. As a great ancient water conservancy project in China, it is also the world’s only remaining water conservancy project to divert water without a dam.
Mount Qingcheng is one of the China’s four famous Taoist mountains. In the front mountain stand quintessential Taoist buildings , best represented by the Shangqing Palace and Laojun Pavilion. In the rear mountain, the landscape of secluded forests and elegant water is outstanding.
Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding
Chengdu’s Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding focuses on promoting research on wildlife protection in China. The giant panda is one of the most important research target species. It is the best place to closely observe giant pandas.
Leshan Giant Buddha and Mount Emei
Leshan Giant Buddha
The Leshan Giant Buddha is a marvelous stone statue from the Tang Dynasty. The Giant Buddha is·71 meters tall and 100 people can sit on its feet, making it the world’s largest sitting stone statue of Maitreya.
Mount Emei in Sichuan, Mount Wutai in Shanxi, Mount Jiuhua in Anhui, and Mount Putuo in Zhejiang are China’s four most famous Buddhist mountains, earning this region the title of “Buddhist Paradise.” According to Buddhist tradition, it is also the bodhimanda, or place of enlightenment, of Samantabhadra, the Buddhist Lord of Truth. It was listed into the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1996.
In Ngawa Prefecture, there are wide prairies and towering snow-capped mountains. The quiet natural landscape and rare plant and animal resources are well preserved. It is hailed as the world’s best eco-tourism destination by tourism experts around the world.
Huanglong got its name due to the famous Buddhist temple, the Huanglong Temple. It is China’s only well-preserved high wetland. The grand, colorful and brilliant calcified earth landscape is the main attraction here.
During the golden autumn in the vast Miyaluo red leaf scenic area, the magnificent red leaves and gorgeous col rs together with the blue sky, white clouds, mountains, and rivers constitute an intoxicating golden-autumn picture.
The Hongyuan Grand Prairie became well known because of the Red Army’s Long March. It is one of the world’s most beautiful wetland prairies and boasts a sea of flowers.
Garze Prefecture - Mount Gongga
Peaks cluster around snow-capped mountains which link together at Mount Gongga. At an elevation of 7,556 meters, the main peak is an internationally famous mecca for mountaineering. Moreover, it is far more difficult to reach its summit than Mount Everest. China’s highest ice waterfall with charming scenery is in Hailuogou at the foot of the mountain.
Ngawa Prefecture - Mount Siguniang
Mount Siguniang is famous for its grandness and straightness. The steep mountain points highly toward the blue sky just like the beautiful scenery of southern Europe, and is known as the “Oriental Alps.” It is a famous holy mountaineering place.
Yibin - Bamboo Forest in Southern Sichuan
The Bamboo Sea in Southern Sichuan is located in the Liantian Mountain ranges. Over 70,000 mu of phyllostachys pubescens covers 28 mountains and over 500 hills of different sizes. The Bamboo Sea in southern Sichuan stretches and rolls. The land has earned the name “Bamboo Sea” due to its wide area.
Xichang - Qionghai Lake
Qionghai Lake is known for its quietness and lucidity. The four seasons bring different scenery to the lake. Qionghai not only has beautiful scenery but also many wonderful folk legends which add to its mystery and beauty.
Sites of the Three Kingdoms Period
Guangyuan - Jianmen Pass
Jianmen Pass is an important pass on the ancient Shu road. Taking advantage of this natural stronghold, the Shu general Jiang Wei of the Three Kingdoms period held off hundreds of thousands of Wei soldiers outside the pass. The Zhuge Liang Pass Building Site has been preserved to this day.
Guangyuan - Zhaohua Ancient Town
The Zhaohua Ancient Town is recognized as a “Town of the Three Kingdoms Period,” where there is the well preserved Fei Yi Tomb, Pao Sanniang Tomb, Niutoushan Jiang Wei Well, as well as the Mars Dam Site where Zhang Fei fought a night battle against Ma Chao.
Nanchong - Langzhong Ancient Town
Langzhong is one of China’s famous ancient towns. The Temple of Han Marquis Huan is commonly known as the Zhang Fei Temple in the town. With a strict layout and unusual construction, it is magnificent, elegant and beautiful, and an important site of Three Kingdoms period culture.
Ancient Towns in Sichuan
Shuangliu - Huanglongxi Ancient Town
Huanglongxi Ancient Town is one of China’s top ten ancient water towns. The blue flagstone streets, Pavilions and houses with wooden pillars and tiles, exquisitely carved handrails and window frames induce a quaint and quiet feeling in visitors, and are part of the folk and custom tradition of small Sichuan towns.
Qionghai - Pingle Ancient Town
Pingle Ancient Town has a long history and many talents have gathered here. In the ancient town, there are old banyan trees, the Baimo River and stilted buildings along the river, as well as blue flagstone streets, and a sea of bamboos that expands as far as the eye can see, like a paradise.
Longquanyi - Luodai Ancient Town
Luodai Ancient Town was built during the Three Kingdoms period, and was home to the Hakka people for generations. The town boasts unique Hakka cuisine and rich Hakka customs, known as the “first Hakka town in the world.”
Dayi - Anren Ancient Town
Most of the existing neighboring buildings in Anren Ancient Town were built druing the late Qing Dynasty and early Minguo Period, and they are best reprented by Liu’s Manor, whose architectural style is a combination of Chinese and Western, grave and elegant. With this special architectural style, the manor is known as the “boutique of building culture in western Sichuan.”
Garze Prefecture - Luding Bridge
The Luding Bridge was built during the years of the Emperor Kangxi of the Qing Dynasty. It is made of 13 bowl-thick iron chains with a total weight of 21 tons. Since the Qing Dynasty, the Sichuan Luding Bridge has been an important passage to Tibet.
Kangding - Paoma Mountain
The Paoma Mountain became widely famous due to the “Love Song of Kangding.” The Gathering of Walking around the Mountain is held here on the 8th day of the 4th lunar month each year. There is horse racing during the day and boisterous nightly song and dance parties which last until the next morning.
Kangding - Tagong Prairie
The Tagong Prairie is at an altitude of 3,730 meters. The Sichuan-Tibet Highway passes through it. Tagong means “a place favored by Buddha” in Tibetan. The rivers, prairies, forests, temples and Tibetan buildings along the highway constitute a fascinating and enchanting route.
Litang - Litang Monastery
The Litang Monastery is the largest temple of the Gelug of Tibetan Buddhism in Kham. The monastery was built on the mountain. The main palace is a Buddha house built with walls and beams painted with colorful murals.
Daocheng - Yading
The Yading Natural Reserve is famous for its unique original ecological environment. It is rich in flora and fauna resources, complex and diverse biological genes and rare high mountain natural ecosystems.
Batang - Cuopugou
Cuopugou goes from Maoyaba in the east to the Yasu Mountain with an elevation of 4,860 meters and expands 900 square kilometers. In Cuopugou, the snow-capped mountains, lakes, forests, and valleys are very wonderful. The majestic Zhajinjiabo Holy Mountain is the most spectacular and magical mountain of the Hengduan Mountains.
Danba - Jiuju Tibetan Village
Jiaju Tibetan Village rises layer by layer from the Dajin River Valley and extends to the foot of the Kapama Peaks. Seen from afar, the Kapama Peaks are like a mother opening her arms to hold the mountain villages safely.
Dege - Dege Sutra Printing House
Dege Sutra Printing House is called “a bright pearl at the foot of the snow-capped mountain.” Over 220,000 ancient woodcut plates have been miraculously preserved in the Printing House, and are precious pieces of world cultural heritage.
Jiuzhaigou Valley got its name because there are nine Tibetan villages in the valley. At an average altitude of 2,000 to 3,000 meters, the scenic area is renowned at home and abroad for its “five wonders”: Green Lake, Overlapping Lake, colorful forests, snow-capped mountains, and Tibetan customs.
The Long Lake is the largest lake in Jiuzhaigou Valley about 7.5 kilometers long and 500 meters wide. The lake is deep blue, and the water neither overflows nor dries up all year round, which is very special.
Nuorilang Waterfalls are one of the widest waterfalls in China. The surging water falls down like the Milky Way. In the morning sun, you can often see a rainbow hanging across the valley, an extremely charming sight.
Five Flower Lake
The Five Flower Lake is hailed as “a wonder in Jiuzhaigou Valley.” Colorful corals grow in the green lake. The Tiger Stone is the best place to find a view. From here, photographs of the Five Flower Lake come out just like a tapestry.
Shuzheng Lakes are distinct in both height and color. The trees are verdant and the lakes are deep blue. The mixture of blues and greens is especially charming.
Recommended Tourist Itineraties
A Tour of Chengdu, Country of Heaven
Route: Chunxi Road — Kuan and Zhai Alleys — Du Fu Thatched Cottage — Temple of Marquis Wu — Jinsha Ruins — Dujiangyan — Mount Qingcheng
Sight: As a famous historical and cultural city, Chengdu is the capital of leisure and enjoyment. It always enjoys a reputation of the “Land of Heaven”.
A Tour of Mysterious Western Sichuan
Route: Huanglong — Jiuzhaigou Valley — Miyaluo — Hailuogou — Tagong Prairie — Yading, Daocheng
Sight: Western Sichuan can be called the travelers’ dream. The famous and enchanting Huanglong and Jiuzhaigou Valley scenic sites can be found here, as can the mysterious world wonder Yading in Daocheng, and rich Tibetan and Qiang style customs.
A Tour of the Leshan Mountain and Mount Emei
Route: Leshan Giant Buddha — Mount Emei
Sight: Near Mount Emei, the Leshan Mountain has a magical relation to Buddhism. People visit the Leshan Mountain to look at the world-famous Maitreya, and go to Mount Emei to pay homage to the golden Samantabhadra.
As one of the eight major Chinese cuisines, Sichuan cuisine is extremely famous. Mandarin duck hot pot, mapo tofu, fuqi feipian (cold beef tripe), twice cooked pork, guokui, dandan noodles, longchaoshou, and tear-shedding jelly are popular all over the country.
Tear-shedding jelly : Tear-shedding jelly is a Sichuan specialty. An extremely spicy dish, it will cause people who eat it to shed tears, hence the name.
Special local products mainly include Sichuan brocade, Sichuan embroidery, porcelain and bamboo weaving, Qingcheng silk carpest, Langzhong Zhang Fei beef, Pixian Douban, Qingchuan black fungus, Mount Meng tea, Chaotian walnuts, Anren grapes, Dayi hot pickled mustard tuber, stewed trotter and so on.
Chunxi Road: Chunxi Road was rated as one of China’s top ten prosperous commercial streets, a perfect shopping and gourmet paradise where a large number of shopping plazas and famous brand stores can be· found. Additionally, you can certainly enjoy delicious Sichuan cuisine here.
The major airports in Sichuan include Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport, Dazhou Heshi Airport, Luzhou Lantian Airport, Jiuzhai Huanglong Airport, Yibin Caiba Airport, Xichang Qingshan Airport, and Kangding Airport. Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport is one of for major airports in China. There are currently more than 140 routes that directly connect to many cities at home and abroad.
Sichuan is a railway transportation hub 10 southwest China. Now, the railway network has formed and consists of five main railways, eight minor railways and four regional railways. The Baoji-Chengdu Railway, the Dazhou-Chengdu Railway, the Chengdu-Chongqing Railway, and the Chengdu-Kunming Railway are the most important ones.
Many important expressways run through Sichuan, including the Beijing-Kunming Expressway, the Shanghai-Chengdu Expressway, the Baotou-Maoming Expressway, the Lanzhou-Haikou Expressway, the Guangyuan-Ganchuan Expressway, the Xiamen-Chengdu Expressway, the Chongqing Kunming Expressway, the Chengdu Chongqing Ring Expressway, the Chengdu Ya’an Expressway and others. Chengdu is a transportation hub in Sichuan.