Zhangjiajie Travel Guide
Zhangjiajie Claimed by some to be the inspiration behind Pandora's floating mountains in the hit film Avatar, Zhangjiajie otherworldly rock towers do indeed seem like they come from another planet. Rising from the misty subtropical forests of northwest Húnán, more than 3000 karst pinnacles form a landscape so surreal it is, arguably, unmatched by any other in China. Raft along a river, hike to your heart's content, walk along a petrifying glass walkway, or just spend hours filling up the memory card on your camera.
Zhangjiajie also known in Tujia language as Zhangx jif avlar is a prefecture-level city in the northwestern part of Hunan province in China. It comprises the district of Yongding, Wulingyuan and counties of Cili and Sangzhi. Within it is located Wulingyuan Scenic Area which was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992 as well as an AAAAA scenic area by the China National Tourism Administration.
Zhangjiajie National Forest Park was the first National Forest Park China had since 1982. The master work of nature in Wulingyuan features thousands of sheer mountain peaks in red color, clear streams and primeval forests, which are ideal habitats of rare animals and birds. The amazing landscape here had been a source of creation of the CGI artist in the Avatar movie, and since the movie was released and achieved a great success, many tourists keeping coming to Zhangjiajie admiring this natural beauty.
When to visit Zhangjiajie
The park is open all year round, and each season has it’s own pleasant characteristics. That being said DO NOT visit during any Chinese national holiday, the main ones being Chinese New Year in late January/early February or National Day which is during the first week of October. Summer holidays will also bring the crowds as well as the heat. We visited at the end of October and the weather was mild with a mixture of blue skies, cloudy days and short rain showers. The weather did not alter or affect our plans in any way.
Drinking & Nightlife
Bars are largely limited to Zhangjiajie City. The Dàyōng Fǔchéng (大庸府城) complex north of Jiefang Lu (解放路) and just west of Beizheng Jie (北正街) has loads of bars and karaoke spots.
In Zhangjiajie City, tree-lined Beizheng Jie has everything you need: accommodation, restaurants, snack stalls, pharmacies, ATMs, internet cafes and bars tucked away down alleys, as well as a street-food market and a street-food night market (南门夜市; Nánmén Yěshì Nanzheng Jie; 南正街 h5am-2am) at its southern extension.