Located in the high Min Shan mountain range northwest of Chengdu, the Jiuzhaigou nature reserve is one of the country’s finest scenic spectacles.
Ancient Chinese legend has it that the goddess Semo accidentally smashed her mirror here and the pieces that fell down the mountain formed beautiful lakes, streams and waterfalls.
Heavily forested and surrounded by snowy peaks, this beautiful area is home to the protected takins, golden monkeys and pandas. Yaks, shrines and prayer wheels are all common sights in the area and the villages are inhabited by Tibetan and Qiang people.
For the adventurous a spectacular overland route crosses the high steppe of northern Sichuan to Xiahe in Gansu Province, home of one of the most significant Tibetan Lamaseries.