We all know that there are quite a lot of places in China which are worth visiting. This time we have picked the most popular and well-known attractions that every Chinese dream to visit at least once in their lifetime. This list also gives variation so that each of them carries a unique character and they all exhibit different culture, history, architecture and outlook.
So by viewing this list you would have a quick glance at what to expect in exploring most attractions in China.
The Great Wall of China – Always the Number 1 of China Attractions
Built over plains and mountains, the Great Wall of China is the longest wall in the world. It was erected to protect the Chinese Empire from the northern invaders, and is a significant example of ancient defensive architecture. No other structure built on earth has cost as much in terms of human, sweat, tears lives, and blood. Visitors who travel along the length of the wall will pass through eight provinces of North China, witnessing some breath-taking scenery on the route. It is only when a person is actually at the wall that he can truly understand why it has been given a place as the “New Seven Wonders of the World”.
Forbidden City – Palace and Chinese Tradition Culture of Royalty
The Forbidden City is situated in the center of Beijing. It consists of ninety palaces and courtyards, besides numerous other buildings. The highlight is a grand palace built as a replica of the Purple Palace, God’s abode in Heaven. This was the emperor’s residence. It has two sections, the inner palace and the outer courts. This huge, ancient, well preserved structure is a wonderful representation of Chinese architecture and finds a place in the list of one of the five most important palaces in the world today. In ancient times, ordinary people were forbidden to enter the city, which was heavily guarded. For the tourists there are many interesting halls to visit.
Potala Palace, Lhasa – The Mysterious Tibet Style
Situated on Mount Moburi in Lhasa, the amazing Potala Palace is the world’s highest ancient palace. It is a sacred site for many Tibetans. This stone and wood structure houses articles and artefacts from Tibetan history, religion and culture. Inside the palace, visitors can see ancient statues of Buddha and breath-taking works of art along with murals depicting the life of the Dalai Lama. The upper most halls called Sasong Langjie are a treat to visit. Every Tibetan New Year’s Day sees the Dalai Lamas come here to pay homage and pray for the Tibetans. Visitors to the palace are filled with admiration for it.
Terracotta Army and the Mausoleum of Qin Emperor – The Treasure and Proof of Ancient China
The unique Terracotta Army is one of the top attractions of China. It is the world’s oldest and largest imperial tomb complex. Known to be the greatest archaeological site in the world, it houses thousands of life-size terracotta soldiers. They represent the army that was the decisive factor in creating a united China and accompanying its emperor into immortality. The figures are vivid and a joy to a student of history. Every soldier differs from the ones around him. Many figures hold original weapons which have not rusted or corroded over the passage of time, but are still as sharp as ever. Visitors will be astonished at the army formation of ancient China, and will feel transported to a period 2000 years ago.
West Lake – the Big Chinese Garden
West Lake, the most famous tourist attraction of Hangzhou is a man-made lake. A lovely place to relax in, it is peaceful and can be a haven for those who want to get away from the busy urban life. Surrounded by mountains from three sides, it has three bridges or causeways across it and boasts of three man-made islands. Boat cruises and self-rowing boats are available to take tourists to these islands. The tree-lined walkways, the mountains and the lush islands, all add to the scenic beauty. Visitors can take leisurely walks around the lake, or bike around. It is well known that this lake is one of the best biking routes in China.
Mount Huangshan, the Yellow Mountain – Stunning Mountain Scenary
Huangshan Prefecture in East China is famous for the Yellow Mountains. This stunningly beautiful area is one of the most visited places in China. The granite peaks of the mountains and the pine forests that can be seen in the area are simply spectacular. Another attraction here is the great variety of zoological species. Hot springs and winter snows, pines and rocks, and the mirage of the sea of clouds, all these are visible on these mountains. Its natural beauty has, for centuries, attracted artists, who come here to paint beautiful landscapes. People also come here to witness “Buddha’s Light”. It is a good retreat, where one can meditate or simply relax.
Zhangjiajie, Wulingyuan – Impressing Natural Forest of Pillars
Zhangjiajie city is fast becoming a very popular tourist destination of China. Plenty of sunshine and rainfall and its virgin natural beauty add to the allure of the place. The main attraction in this area is the Wulingyuan Scenic Spot with its natural countryside, dense forests and the numerous streams that make one feel it is a beautiful painting. Another attraction is the Baofeng Lake with ample water and fresh air. Surrounded by tall trees and taller mountain peaks, this lake plays host to some stunning waterfalls. Still another tourist spot is the Yellow Dragon Cavern, popularly known as the “wonder of the world’s caves”. Here one can see amazing sights of stalactites, stalagmites and caves inside caves.
Yangtze River – River Cruise and the Large River
Yangtze River has to its name several world records. It is the third largest river in the world, but the longest river in a country. Its source is the highest in the world, on the border of Qinghai Province and Naggu Prefecture, Tibet. It offers many fascinating tourist attractions as one travels along its length. To start with, the world’s highest railway passes only 100 km from its source. It houses the world’s deepest gorge. As one travels down, one reaches the Three Gorges which are astonishingly beautiful. It is here that one can visit the world’s largest dam and hydroelectric plant. Tourists can take relaxing cruises along the river’s course.
Guilin – Sightseeing Rock and Mmountain Formations with Paddles
One of the most beautiful places in China is Guilin, with its two crystal-clear rivers. The mountains surrounding the city have plenty of caves and odd rock formations. It is one of the most beautiful mountain and water scenery in the world. Tourists will find plenty to see here, from the scenic beauty of Li River to the exciting Longmen Water Cave waiting to be explored, and the mountains to climb. The beauty of the terraced fields of Longj is a treat to the eye. Reed Flute Cave and the Crown Cave are other fascinating caves. In the centre of the city there are two large lakes where visitors can go on relaxing cruises.
Lijiang – Chinese Style Old Town
The county of Lijiang is situated almost equidistant from Burma and Tibet. This thinly populated area has immense natural conserves. The architecture here shows an amalgamation of elements of many cultures. Visitors here are awe-struck at the remarkable scenic beauty of places like Tiger Leaping Gorge and the surrounding towering mountains. Exciting hikes and treks are a highlight here. There are museums and temples to visit. These give an insight into the culture of the area. There is also a small ski area on the Yulong Snow Mountain. Lijiang also boasts of an ancient intricate and complex water supply system that is functioning even today.
As you can see, each attractions is quite different from each other, there are scenic areas, mountains, architectures, even the palaces carry their own style. It is rather impossible to visit all of them in one visit, but you can plan your trip in such as way to get similar feelings, for example there are Chinese cultural gardens like West Lake nearly in every part of China, visit one which is nearby where you are stopping. If you cannot afford to go to the top mountains, you can go hiking at a country park nearby, of course the scenery will not be as stunning as the top natural attractions, but at least you could get a taste of hiking in natural environments in China. Natural mountains are one of the most anticipated types of attractions in China, take a walk for a couple of minutes and you can brag about them when you fly back to your home country.