China

Huanglong, Sichuan, China

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Huanglong National park is a must do together with Jiuzhaiguo tour. It is a mountain with many colorful mineral pools, lakes and waterfalls. There is a 4.2km wooden boardwalk up the valley from the entrance to the top where a temple is at the apex.




Huanglong
 has been officially declared a World Heritage site. Mainly because it has diverse forest ecosystem and a home for endangered species of plants and animals such as giant panda and Sichuan golden snub-nosed monkey.
Xishen Grotto. is said to be place the immortals came to bathe. It is said the the immortals washed away their worldly vulgarity in this grotto before they cultivate themselves. Interesting!
In China, the name dragon (long) is a favourite, therefore, here Huanglong Valley literally means "Yellow Dragon Valley". Picture above shows the Yellow waterfall and stream following all along the way. 'Huang' in Mandarin means yellow. Well, when I showed a friend this photo, he commented that it looks like a muddy river...... 
The wooden boardwalk, which is cooling, scenic with various types of flora and multi colored leaves of trees. The climb here is not rough (not as rough as Huangshan, 410 km southwest of Shanghai) with this wooden boardwalk. 

The Huanglong National park entrance is about 10,000 feet above sea level. (overall about 1700m - 5588m up top) Our tour guide told us that high altitude may result in difficulty in breathing because of thin air and less oxygen. Therefore, our bus stopped halfway in town enabling to empower ourselves with oxygen. A packet of oxygenated liquid was sold at RMB100 and a can of oxygen gas at RMB50. A few of my fellow tour friends did not go up, waited in the bus probably due to age or health problems. I also experience some chest pain initially at the entrance. well it diminishes slowly after my body get aclimatised.
Halfway, I saw this hut which I initially thought it was a restroom. But, no! It is an Oxygen Hut. There are about 4 chairs inside. I saw people drinking from a cup. Well, a cup of oxygenated water was sold for RMB1. On the way down, a friend wanted to try, so we went in again. The cup ones were sold out, only left are packets of air with a tube for you to suck. It is also sold for RMB1. Imagine oxygen being sold up there for only RMB1? Anyway, none of my friends wanted, so I did not get the chance to snap any pictures.
Walking up and down takes about 4 hours, but our tour guide advises us to not to go all the way, maybe due to time constraints and maybe because of the altitude problem. We were told to come down after the third scenic stop.
 He told us of cases where some tourist had heart attacks, some was sent to hospitals and warded and given drips.
Living up to its name of "Yellow Dragon". This is the top view of the yellow waterfall.

View of snow-capped mountain behind. Overall view halfway from the top, people walking on the wooden boardwalk coming up. 
                                                            Interesting green colored lakes



Beautiful natural travertine formations.
It is similar to Pamukkale (Cotton Castle) of Turkey. But personally, I would say Pamukkale of Turkey is better because it is bigger there!
Here, in Huanglong, it is surrounded naturally by trees, giving it a charming, serene picturesque view.
The entrance ticket is RMB200 per pax with a discounted ticket of RMB100 for seniors above 60 and students (depending on season)
Huanglong National Park needs a whole day trip. Huanglong is about 2.5 hours from Jiuzhaigou, so normally people will do this two tour of Jiuzhaigou and Huanglong together. It takes around 4 hours bus ride to Maoxian town and the ride down the hillslope is made up of many hairpin U turns. 

Personal Opinion: For adventurer hikers, it is better not to follow group package tours because lots of consideration and patience is needed as fellow tour members are from different age group and we have to abide by the time set by the tour guide.
Thank you.
Related post: Juzhaigou tour and my pictures

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3 comments

  1. Huanglong simply looks natural - a natural beauty, probably a sleeping beautiful yellow dragon.

    ReplyDelete

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