China has the 2nd largest number of UNESCO World Heritage sites in the world. With 53 sites to its name (and even more pending), China’s vast lands and rich history are being preserved for the world to enjoy.
If you happen to be in Chengdu or anywhere else in Sichuan province, be sure to drop by these amazing UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Sichuan Giant Panda Sanctuaries
This UNESCO site covers a vast area, including Wolong, Mount Siguniang and Jiajin Mountains. Home to more than 30% of the world’s Giant Pandas, the collective areas of 7 nature reserves and 9 scenic parks are one of the most important captive breeding and research sites of these endangered animals.
Along with the Giant Panda, it is also home to many other endangered species, such as the Red Panda and Snow Leopard.
Visitors can view the Giant Pandas close-up, and understand more about these lovely creatures through Panda Volunteer Programs. One popular site for visitation is at the Dujiangyan Giant Panda Center at Mount Qingcheng.
Mount Emei Scenic Area
The Mount Emei Scenic Area includes the Leshan Giant Buddha Scenic Area, and is one of the most iconic Buddhist destinations in the world.
Mount Emei is the highest of the 4 Sacred Buddhist Mountains of China, and is one third of the 3 Martial Art Mountains. Majestic views and rich cultural architecture greets its visitors who take the effort to travel to its summit.
The Leshan Giant Buddha Scenic Area is home to the Leshan Giant Buddha, an impressive stone sculpture carved out of a cliff. This tallest pre-modern statue in the world faces Mount Emei, giving peace to travellers passing by the rivers at its feet.
Huanglong Scenic and Historic Interest Area
Situated in the north-west of Sichuan Province, the Huanglong valley is made up of snow-capped peaks and the easternmost of all the Chinese glaciers. It’s natural beauty lies in its numerous unique landscapes of geological landforms.
Huanglong is home to many endangered species including the giant panda and the Sichuan golden snub-nosed monkey.
Jiuzhaigou Valley Scenic and Historic Interest Area
A place of immense natural beauty that’s admired by tourists all over the world, Jiuzhaigou is a nature reserve and national park located in the north of Sichuan Province in the southwestern region of China.
The scenic area boasts majestic views of nature, with rivers and lakes forming around its 3 main valleys arranged in a Y shape.
Dazu Rock Carvings
The persistence of artistic endeavours of the ancient Chinese are a feat to behold. Located near the Sichuan province borders, the Dazu Rock Carvings are made up of 75 protected sites containing some 50,000 statues, with over 100,000 Chinese characters forming inscriptions and epigraphs.
The carvings date back as far as the 7th century AD, depicting and influenced by Buddhist, Confucian and Taoist beliefs.