If you ever visit Sichuan and you drop by to Chengdu, make sure you visit Dujiangyan, (都江堰) the ancient irrigation system that supplies water to a large part of Sichuan.
Before the Dujiangyan irrigation systerm was developed, the water from the Min River (called Minjiang in Chinese) would rush to the Chengdu Plain, making it very prone to flood.
And then the governor of Shu named Li Bing was sent there to study the river flow and how he could develop the area. And Li Bing headed the construction of Dujiangyan.
If you want to learn more about the history of this place or how the irrigation system works, visit this page from Wikipedia.
Or better yet, visit Dujiangyan yourself and witness the creativity and the brilliant idea of the people from the past.
My Trip to Dujiangyan
If you were to ask me, I would say that Dujiangyan is one of the must-visit attractions in Sichuan.
Dujiangyan city is located not too far away from Chengdu. If you take the high-speed rail, it takes about 45 minutes to reach the city.
The city itself has the same name as the scenic area, both are called Dujiangyan.
If you are really going over to this place, my personal advice is to get a guide. You need someone to explain the history and how this irrigation system works.
Trust me, it will be interesting. My only regret is that I didn’t get a guide and now I’m telling you not to repeat my mistake. 🙂
Don’t worry, almost every tourist attractions in China have tourist centers. And you can easily get an English-speaking guide to show you around.
You may have to pay extra, but it is going to be well worth it.
The only thing that I don’t like is that if you want to get to the Yulei Pavilion (玉垒阁) , which is the top of the mountain, you will need to take the escalator. And you have to pay for it.
My gosh, I have paid for the entrance and now I need to pay one more time to use the escalator to get to the top.
And there is no other way to get to the Yulei Pavilion. You can’t walk because there is no passage.
So should you pay and go up to the top? Yes, you should.
When you get to the top, you can see the entire city of Dujiangyan, which is a very nice scenery.
Unfortunately, when I was there, the weather was cloudy. I couldn’t really see far from the pavilion. But the view is still nice.
You can only visit the scenic area during the
I recommend you to stay a night here in Dujiangyan.
Tips When Visiting Dujiangyan
Dujiangyan is a nice place to visit. And in my opinion, you should stay here for a night.
Some people who don’t have much time will choose to visit Dujiangyan and Mount Qingcheng in a day. I think this is way too rush and you can’t fully enjoy these places.
Mount Qingcheng is located nearby to Dujiangyan. You can take the domestic bus or a taxi to travel to both places. I think the travel time is about 30 minutes.
And if you have 2 days, spend 1 day on Mount Qingcheng and another day on Dujiangyan. Spend the night in Dujiangyan city because there are more things to see. And don’t forget to visit the Nanqiao at night too.