Famed for its rainbow-colored landscape, Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park, 40 kilometers from the city of Zhangye, Gansu Province, is one of China’s most spectacular tourist spots.
The park covers an area of 510 square meters, and features rainbow mountains formed 6 million years ago by wind- and water-eroded red sandstones. The typical landscapes rooted in China’s arid area can be found nowhere else in the world. You might think that the images you see have been manipulated until you see it in person. For a sneak peek, the park’s official website provides a 360 degree digital experience. http://www.zydanxia.com/360/
In 2013, Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park was listed as one of the 22 “epic places” in the world by Huffington Post.
Best views are at sunrise and sunset. There are five viewing platforms which provide different sights. Due to the undulating terrain, visitors can feel as if they are walking through a colorful painting.
Best time to go:
June through September is the best time to view the colorful mountains when the weather is cool and the air is relatively humid. The official website gives detailed opening hours and best times to visit according to the times of sunsets and sunrises.
January 1 – February 28: 7:30 am – 5 pm
March 1- April 10: 6:30 am – 6 pm
April 11 – May 4: 6 am – 6 pm
May 5 – August 31; October 1 – October 7: 5:30 am – 7 pm
September; October 8 – October 31: 6:30 am – 6 pm
November – December: 7:30 am – 5 pm
How to get there:
To get to Zhangye, your first stop will be in Lanzhou, the capital city of Gansu Province, and then you should transfer to Zhangye by air or railway.
The Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park is 40 km from the city and you can rent a vehicle or take a public bus from the Xiguan Bus Station.
We recommended a route for visitors to get the whole experience of the culture in this northwestern Chinese province. First visit the Zhangye Giant Buddha Temple located in southwestern Zhangye. It is an important historic site along the Silk Road. Then go to the Mati Temple to experience grottoes art and Yugu ethnic minority culture. Zhangye Danxia Landform Geological Park is located before the last stop of the Yugu Ethnic Minority Cultural Corridor, an ethnic group unique to Gansu Province. Clothing worn by the Yugu ethnic minority has been listed as a national intangible cultural heritage.