Mounigou Valley

Mounigou Valley, located to the west of Songpan Ancient Town, occupies an area of 160 square kilometers (62 square miles). It has an elevation between 2,800 meters (9,186 feet) and 4,070 meters (13,353 feet) with an annual average temperature of 7°C (44.6°F). It belongs to the western part of Huanglong National Scenic Reserve. After ten years of development, this unknown valley has now been listed as the World Biosphere Reserve, World Natural Heritage as well as the Green Globe 21 of UN. Its spectacular mountain scenery, large waterfall and the surrounding culture combine to create an attractive landscape.

There are two major scenic spots in Mounigou Valley: Zhaga Waterfall and Erdaohai Scenic Area.

Zhaga Waterfall in Mounigou Valley

There are many colorful pools and round waterfalls in Zhaga Valley. The various sounds of waterfalls echo throughout the forest. Some fall down from the calcific steps while others pass through the woods creating an impressive spray and some misty fog.

Among the most beautiful waterfalls, Zhaga Waterfall feels like the most supernatural one. It is the largest travertine waterfall in China. It is 93.2 meters (306 feet) high and 35 meters (38 yards) wide with an elevation of 3,270 meters (10,728 feet). In the upper reaches of the waterfall is a lake and in the lower reaches, is a multistep waterbed. When the waterfall rushes down from the travertine steps, it creates a large spray and an earsplitting sound. Visitors will be astonished by the amazing scene. The filemot rock cliff of the waterfall shows some flowery color under the sunshine.

When wandering along the path, you can not only see the countless flowers blooming in profusion in the primeval forest, but also some dense bamboo forest. It is the sphere of activity for the pandas-the national rare animal. If you are lucky enough, you can meet them on your way. Also along the 5 kilometer (3.1 mile) valley, you can find hundreds of colorful pools of different shapes and sizes, they are very attractive.

Erdaohai Scenic Area in Mounigou Valley

Erdaohai Scenic Area hides in a jungle with an area of 6,800 square meters (1.68 acres). Visitors can get here by horse or on foot from the Zhaga Waterfall. The upper part of Erdaohai Lake is so limpid and clear that people can see little fishes under the water. While the lower part of it is a deep pool, it is too deep to be fathomable. Erdaohai Lake is a typical fallen lake. The color of water changes gradually from light blue to black blue as the depth increases.

Not counting Erdaohai Lake, there are over 400 other lakes in this scenic area, such as Swan Lake and Ginseng Lake. Meanwhile, visitors can see the mysterious solution caves here. Some caves connect with each other while some little ones are in the bigger caves. These are really impressive. Among them, the most attractive one is Xuannv Palace. The stalactites in this cave are of all shapes. Some are like chairs and some are like beds or tables. The undefiled stalagmites hang there and join with each other. From them, tourists can witness first hand the superlative craftsmanship made by nature.

More Things to Do in Mounigou Valley

In addition to the two scenic spots, there are many other things to see in Mounigou Valley, such as Tibetan Buddhist temples and Flower Lake. Also, they can experience the horse riding tour.

Tibetan Buddhism is an essential part of the local residents' daily life. There are two main temples in the scenic area: Xiaobao Temple and Hou Temple. They all belong to Gulug (Yellow hat) of Tibetan Buddhism.

There is a lake called Flower Lake because the green water surface is covered by hundreds of blossoming nameless flowers. The types as well as the colors of these flowers change according to the season. When you come here, you will find yourself standing in a flower sea as people described in a fairy tale.

Horse Riding Tour is another attraction in the valley. Since it began in 1982, more and more visitors choose this way to appreciate the amazing scenery each year. It can make them feel closer to the nature. There are two tour lines: bivouac and living in little inns. Visitors can decide which one to choose or change the tour line according to their needs.

Mounigou Travel Tips

The taboo of Tibetan custom: The Tibetans never eat donkey and dog. They don't eat fish in some places.

How to get to Mounigou Valley

Take a bus from Chengdu Chadianzi Bus Station to Songpan County, and the buses depart at 7:30, 9:30, 11:30 and 13:00. The bus fare is CNY109. After arrival, hire a local car or taxi to Mounigou Valley and the fare is around CNY200.

Entrance Fee CNY70 for Zhaga Waterwalls or Erdaohai Lake alone;
CNY100 for both Zhaga Waterfalls and Erdaohai Lake.
Opening Hours 8:00 - 17:00
- Last modified on Jun. 26, 2018 -
Questions & Answers on Mounigou Valley
Asked by amalia paola from ITALY | Sep. 26, 2017 02:36Reply
Hi, could you please suggest me how many hours/days are the best to enjoy Mounigou valley?
Is it enough half day? Or it is necessary to stay at least one day.

Answers (1)
Answered by Terra from SINGAPORE | Sep. 26, 2017 20:06

Yes, half day is enough for enjoying. Have a nice trip!
Asked by Hana from JAPAN | Oct. 15, 2016 23:20Reply
How long does it take from Songpan to Munigou by a taxi or private car?
I will arrive in Songpan around 1pm. Is that too late to hire a car, spend 3-4 hours there and come back to Songpan? Please give me some ideas how to manage this tight schedule without rushing too much.
Answers (1)
Answered by Tiana from PAKISTAN | Oct. 16, 2016 02:10

Hey, it is around 20km and will takes around half an hour. And 1:00pm is not late at all, so you can of course tour around for half a day.
Asked by tan from THAILAND | Aug. 11, 2016 07:11Reply
How much is a taxi from Songpan old town to Mounigou Valley for a round trip?
And how many hours should I spend at that scenic area?
Answers (1)
Answered by Jim from USA | Aug. 12, 2016 03:10

Well, I'm afraid that there is no taxi. You'd better to hire a private car or share a car with other tourists. As I know, the car rental fee is about CNY 300 per day.
In addition, the suggested sightseeing time is 2-3 hours.
Have a nice trip! :)
Asked by Rita from AUSTRALIA | Oct. 19, 2013 08:37Reply
Will Munigou and Huanglong be closed in December (1st week of December)?
Also, is it safer to travel by bus/ by plane from Chengdu to JZG during that time? During winter, will there be significantly less taxis? Should I charter a car in advance or can I book them when I arrive at the airport? Is it worthwhile to visit MNG scenic area in winter? Thanks.
Answers (1)
Answered by Kinada from USA | Oct. 19, 2013 22:58

During that time, the Huanglong scenic area will be closed and Munigou valley will still operate. And the valley has been a must-see scenic area in winter, worth time! It is best to travel from Chengdu to Jiuzhaigou by plane then.

Yeah, generally the taxi will be musch less in Dec. If you need to rent a car, it is suggested to have one in advance.
Asked by Popeye from USA | Nov. 20, 2012 20:23Reply
Planning to fly from Chengdu to Jiuzhaigou on 17- 20 March 2013:
1) How is the weather in JZG and Mounigou during that month?
2) When is Huanglong closed for visitor and as an alternative, is it advisable to go to Mounigou?
3) How far is Huanglong airport => Mounigou => Jiuzhaigou? Is it safe to opt for taxi as transport, how much is the fare per person and how is the road condition?
4) For a day trip to Mounigou, what are the main attractions to visit within the limited time?
Answers (2)
Answered by Porter | Nov. 25, 2012 01:12

Well, it will be still a little cool during March, with the average temp of 10-13C. So the sweater, overcoat and jeans as well as rainy gear can be prepared.
As I know, during that time, both Huanglong Scenic Area and Munigou are open, so you can choose either of them to enjoy yourself.
Form the airport to Munigou, it takes about 1.5h or a little longer and for the journey from Munigou to Jiuzhaigou takes 2h or longer. Well, taxi is certainly safe enough, but the car rental is more suggested for convenience. It costs about CNY800-1,000 for the car rental for the whole journey. The road condition is safe enough. Don't worry!
The major scenic spots in Munigou are Zhaga Waterfall, Erdaohai Scenic Area, Tibetan Buddhist temples and Flower Lake.
Welcome and nice trip then!
Answered by Popeye from USA | Nov. 28, 2012 20:55

Thanks Porter.
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