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Best Places to See Autumn Colors in China

Published: Sep. 20, 2016
Golden autumn in China is mild and charming. Many people choose to travel during this period. So where are the best places to see autumn colors in China? There are some places commonly recognized as the most beautiful ones, including Mutianyu Great Wall in Beijing, Jiuzhai Valley in Sichuan, Yellow Mountain in Anhui, and Kanas Nature Reserve in Xinjiang.

No. 1: Mutianyu Great Wall, Beijing

Though not as famous as Badaling Great Wall, Mutianyu Great Wall is a place you’ll never regret for visiting it. In autumn, with all leaves turning red and yellow, the Great Wall is dressed in a colorful gown. Standing on the top, a magnificent breath-taking picture depicting autumn scenes is unfolded before your eyes. It’s 45 miles (72km) from downtown Beijing. Visitors can conveniently take bus 916 Express from Dongzhimen to Huairou. Then, transfer to bus line h23, h24, h35, or h36 to Mutianyu.
Mutianyu Great Wall in Autumn
Autumn Scenery in Jiuzhai Valley

No. 2: Jiuzhai Valley, Sichuan

Honored as a palette overturned by God, Jiuzhai Valley in Western Sichuan is a sea of colors, while autumn is the best season to appreciate its beauty. From the valley bottom to the mountain top, various species of trees display graceful postures and colors. Shone by the sunlight, the lakes change colors irregularly. The raging waterfalls hidden behind trees inject vitality to the scenic areas. The ancient villages make the place more mysterious with its unique culture. Visitors can take a flight to get there, or they can also arrive in Chengdu first and then take a flight or bus to Jiuzhai Valley.

No. 3: Yellow Mountain, Anhui

In 2013, the Lonely Planet, a noted travel magazine, listed top ten places throughout the world to enjoy autumn sceneries and the Yellow Mountain was the only one in China having been selected. Some say that if you have not seen the Yellow Mountain in fall, you will never know how beautiful the mountain is. Nature has created a picturesque world there, where grotesque stones, odd peaks, dreamlike cloud seas, and stunning sunrise meet. With high speed train to the Yellow Mountain opened, visitors can easily get there.

No. 4: Kanas Nature Reserve, Xinjiang

Reputed as a small Switzerland, Kanas is the only scenic area in China that has Northern Europe flavor. Every year, it will turn to a colorful world in September and October. The blue sky and white clouds are reflected on the emerald Kanas Lake. On the lakeside, there are white birth forests and red maple trees, providing visitors a feast for the eyes. To get there, a stopover in Urumqi is recommended.

Avoid Chinese National Day Holiday from Oct. 1 to 7

The most popular places may get crowded during this time. Visitors are advised to travel before or after the holiday. It’s strongly recommended to have train ticket, flight ticket and hotel arranged well in advance.

Wear Warm Clothes

For most places, light shirts and pants are fine, while thick warm clothes are needed for remote mountainous areas.

Avoid Southeast Coastal Areas for Risk of Typhoon

If you are planning to go to southeast coastal areas in China during September or October, please keep an eye on the weather report in case there is a typhoon.

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