If you love winter and like to see snow-covered mountains, Zhangjiajie (likened to “Pandora on Earth” WHAT IS PANDORA?) – and Thien Mon Son (likened to an avenue linking to heaven) will be destinations you cannot miss. What attracts so many tourists?
Zhangjiajie – Pandora on Earth
Zhangjiajie is a national park in Hunan Province, China. It is well known for its majestic views and unique mountain peaks, deep canyons, waterfalls and huge stone pillars, plus it is home to numerous wild animals. Mist surrounding the mountain peaks makes Zhangjiajie seem like the landscape of a fairytale complete with beautiful scenery, a charming river, and poetic valley. Visitors are stunned by the more than 3,000 stone pillars and differently shaped cliffs. Between them are caves, streams and diverse species in a primeval forest. This breathtaking landscape is the result of a geological process that lasted for 380 million years. Numerous changes to the earth’s crust occurred due to the process of erosion and weathering. The sandstone rock forest is most prominent in Zhangjiajie. The rocky, mountain population is clustered into arches, standing like pillars that are interwoven with the pristine forest. That’s why Zhangjiajie is called “Pandora on Earth,” a representative of a beautiful asteroid. This is probably the reason why it was chosen as the location for the Hollywood film Avatar.
Zhangjiajie is beautiful all year round. Each season has a distinct look, but probably the most stunning time of the year is winter. There are less guests coming then, which creates a feeling of tranquility and peace – totally different from the rest of the year.
The avenue that links to heaven
Tianmen mountain is an extraordinary mountain at Zhangjiajie. To get to the top, you must challenge yourself to hike 11 km. The path winds around the mountain, with 99 turns and slopes that represent nine palaces in heaven. After experiencing 99 turns, you walk up another 999 stone steps to get to heaven’s gate. There, the incredible mountain scenery appears right in front of you. The number 999, according to ancient Chinese, represents luck.
There is one of the most dangerous paths in the world here. It runs above the rocky cliffs and is made of transparent glass that is more than six cm thick. Walking on it, you can see the height of the cliffs. Although the manufacturers promise it is super strong glass, it will make you feel anxious and excited at the same time. This path is often referred to as Skywalk.
On the peak of the mountain, near the cable car station there is a large temple. It was built in the Duong dynasty period and has a 130-meter-high dome and is 57 meters wide. There is also a large vegetarian restaurant to serve visitors. Every year, many travelers visit Tianmen mountain to pray for peace and luck for the new year, and for their loved ones.
Do you want to experience a new feeling in the cold of the sky? Do you want to see snow-covered white forests and beautiful sandstone mountains this winter? If so, do not hesitate to take a trip to Thien Mon Son Truong Gia Gioi, “Pandora on Earth.”
This post is also available in: Tiếng Việt