The 8 Best National Parks in China for Photography

national parks in china

American photographers love to shoot the most enchanting destinations in the world.

At the top of the list reigns the unforgettable National Parks in China.

With 225 national parks in China, each fairytale setting captivates at every turn.

Each destination, more breathtaking than the one before.

From towering mountain peaks and golden monkeys to lands carved in stone, there’s always a beautiful shot waiting to be captured.

Join a photography tour or explore the parks at your leisure.

Imagine the amazing pieces of art to take home for your portfolio!

Read on for a deep dive on the eight best national parks in China.

1. One of the best National parks in China–Jiuzhaigou National Park

Named the “Valley of the nine fortified villages”, Jiuzhaigou stretches nearly 300 miles (72,000 hectares)

This protective land is a UNESCO site named a biosphere.

View and photograph endangered wildlife in their own habit. Discover pandas, golden monkeys, red belly pheasants, black-neck cranes and musk deer.

Giant pandas feed on bamboo in the valleys. They are an endangered species and are hard to spot.

These intriguing creatures have inhabited the earth for millions of years

This is why you visit the national parks in China.

The golden monkey lives on wild fruit. It’s found playing in spruce and fir forests. What makes the golden monkey unique is its striking appearance and features. He has a blue face, a pointy nose, brown neck, and long golden body hair.

Turquoise waters, verdant forests, and rushing waterfalls make Jiuizhaigou National Park a kaleidoscope of color and adventure.

One of the greatest national parks in China, it’s a must-see for travel photographers.

 2. Zhangjiajie National Forest

One of the most visited national parks in China is Zhangiajie National Forest. It stretches 243 miles. This beauty is constructed of karst pillars made of beautiful sandstone.

Boasting to be the inspiration for the film Avatar, this park is located in a sub-tropical rainforest, which shrouds a cloak of mystery when the frequent fog rolls in.

With 500 species of trees, including the dawn redwood, the rhesus monkeys, and gigantic salamanders, there’s plenty of photo opps for travel photographers looking for an interesting subject.

3. Guilin Li River National Park

This park’s name means “Cassia Tree Forest” in Chinese.

Its ancient spire-shaped karstic rocks form limestone pillars were created millions of years ago when the earth’s crust ascended due to severe earthquakes.

Situated in Guangxi Province, the park covers 72 miles in the Lijiang River Zone to Yangshuo.

Discover towering pinnacles and columns made of rock, forests and karst caves. Photograph the amazing Reed Flute Cave with thousands of rock carvings along the edge of the river.

Then tour the Linggu Canal built in the 3rd century B.C. by the Quin Dynasty. It is dubbed the oldest working canal in the world.

The area is also great for hiking. You join a tour group with a variety of Guilin Tours.

4. Huangshan National Park

Legend rumors that immortality waits at the top of Mount Huangshan. Set in the heart of the Anhui Province, this historic cultural park has been part of the Tang Dynasty since the 8th century.

During the 16th century’s Ming Dynasty, the park drew painters and poets to its granite peaks.

Visitors are struck by this park’s scenic natural landscape. Explore the grounds while you discover storybook settings such as pine forests, hot springs, and seas of clouds at the foot of the mountain.

Point your Nikon, or camera of choice, at the gray wolf, the Asiatic Wild Dog or the great spotted eagle that roam this 60-mile fabled land.

5. Mount Songshang

A gathering place for Buddhists and Taoists, this national park celebrates a spiritual heritage because years ago Chinese emperors made pilgrimages to this area known as “Five Sacred Mountains.”

In Mount Song, you’ll visit religious sites such as Shaoling Temple, the original home of the Zen sect of Buddhism, in addition to Shaolin Kung Fu that was practiced 1,500 years ago.

Stretching 37 miles, this magical landscape is a great place to take awesome pictures!

Part of the park and a UNESCO site titled “The historic monuments of Dengfeng in the center of heaven and earth”, Dengfeng dates back 1,000 years.

Its name refers to the Dengfeng Observatory deemed the “center of the heavens” and the sole location where astrological readings were accurate.

6. Lushan National Park

Once the summer Republic of China, this national park was an important spiritual site for political leaders, including Mao Tse-tung and Chiang Kai-shek as well as missionaries from the west who traveled here during the 19th century.

Dating back 2,000 years and stretching more than 116 miles, Lushan is home to majestic mountains, deep caverns, beautiful lakes and botanical gardens.

7. Mount Sanquingshan National Park

Mount Sanquingshan, a Geopark, is one of the most stunning national parks in China. Its ecosystem has survived for millions of years.

The historic beauty and unique wildlife amaze American travel photographers.

The park is set in the Huyaiyu Mountains. Three of its mountain peaks earned the name “Three Pure Ones” from Taoist tradition.

Aim your lens and try to capture the images of the rare wildlife. Among them, European otters, Chinese ferret badgers, and black muntjac deer.

8. Longmen Grottoes National Park

Situated in Henan Province in Central China, Longmen Grottoes National Park extends one mile along part of the Yi River.

Grottoes are beautiful natural structures featuring stone caves and stone carvings.

And caves there are!

In this park, you’ll find 2,300 caves.

You’ll also discover 110,000 statues. The smallest statue is only one inch wide! The largest statue is a Buddha statue that measures 57 feet.

Photograph the Buddhist pagodas. There are 60 of them to choose from.

You’ll also tour thousands of inscriptions on stelae, or known as gravestones.

Sacred sites. A treasured history. Protected landscapes. Endangered wildlife.

Point. Focus.Shoot.

The 8 best national parks in China offer rare, scenic beauty wrapped in a Chinese heritage.

Want more tips and advice on China photography? Visit our blog. And when you’re planning a China adventure, be sure to let us know!

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