Huanglong Scenic and Historic Interest Area
Huanglong Scenic and Historic Interest Area covers an area of some 620 square meters. It is a deep valley more than 40 km long in which there are nine Tibetan villages. Secluded and uninhabited, it has a variety of natural attractions: Lakes, waterfalls, mountains and forest.
In the valley, there are one hundred lakes in various sizes and shapes. The water in Wuhua Hai (Five Flower Sea) appears in five colors, and people marvel at this natural wonder. The one-hundred-meter wide Nuorilang Waterfall has 30-meter drop, presenting a spectacular view. The water here is fairly clear and occasionally you can see birds swimming in the lake and fish flying through the blue sky. Primitive, simple and uninhabited, it is a natural heaven.
Within Songpan County on the border of the vast expanse of grasslands, there is a fascinating place: the Yellow Dragon. This area is a mystical and colorful world. Along the 7.5 kilometers canyon are 3,400 lakes, all linked together.
The large ones are about 600 square meters; the smaller ones, like miniature ponds. The most intriguing aspect of these lakes is that, despite coming from the same source, each lake appears in different color. There a whole spectrum of colors that mix and mingle throughout the lakes and ponds, sometimes with extreme visibility and others without the slightest hint of change. Variations happen in unpredictable ways.
From a distance, the golden-colored river bed, which was shaped from lava tens of thousands of years ago, can be seen climbing up from the bottom of the valley and disappearing far above Mount Xuebaoding, the main peak of the Minshan Mountians. This is considered the “Yellow cliff at Xishen Cave, which looks as if it has been cut out of topaz, is the Dragon’s head. Its back, the riverbed, is covered in scales, the colorful lakes and rocks. The dragon’s tail is hidden in the Yucui Peak of Mount Xuebaoding and appears as a gigantic golden dragon flying through the snowy mountains. Legend has it that when King Yu, who founded the reign of Xia Dynasty, controlled the river, his boat was carried by the Yellow Dragon so that he could proceed upstream from Maozhou to regulate the waterways. This gave rise to the beginning of the Min River. Later, a temple was built for worship. The rear was built during the Ming Dynasty and now is still very well preserved. In the center of the temple is a statue of the incarnation of the Yellow Dragon. Every year, on the sixteenth day of the sixth lunar month, many Tibetan, Huis, Qiangs and Hans, travel over mountains and down valleys on a pilgrimage and meet here. They arrive from distant places in Sichuan, Gansu and Qinghai. A three-day fair is held here, at which people enjoy singing and dancing.
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