It is said that if there should be wonderlands on the earth, Jiuzhaigou Valley must be one of them. There is no equal elsewhere that has sceneries and fables of dreamlike eloquence, or natural purities like a fairyland as Jiuzhaigou Valley.Jiuzhaigou Valley is located in Nanping County, 450 kilometers (about 280 miles) to the north of Chengdu City. Its name is due to the existence of nine stockaded villages of Tibetan origin, and it is always regarded as a holy mountain and watercourse by the Tibetan people.Jiuzhaigou Valley is a great masterpiece of nature having dreamlike scenery and abundant natural resources. It combines blue lakes, waterfalls, verdant forests, snow-covered mountains, and the folk customs of the Tibetan and Qiang peoples.
Legend has it; that long, long ago the deity of mountain named Dago had a crush on the goddess Semo, and he gave a mirror that was made from wind and cloud to the goddess. However, the devil appeared and made trouble to Semo. Inadvertently, Semo broke the mirror into 108 pieces, which fell down to the earth and then turned to 108 colorful lakes. The lake is also called Haizi by local people.
Shuzheng Valley is a main tourist route of Jiuzhaigou Valley. It is about 14 kilometers (about nine miles) in length with over 40 lakes, representing 40% of all the lakes in Jiuzhaigou. The major scenic spots in Shuzheng Valley are Double-Dragon Lake, Bonsai Beach, Reed Lake, Spark Lake, Tiger Lake, Shuzheng Waterfall, Rhinoceros Lake, and Nuorilang Waterfall, etc.
Shuzheng Waterfall is the first waterfall you will encounter in the valley. It is 62 meters (about 203 feet) wide and 15 meters (about 49 feet) tall. Though it is the smallest of the four main waterfalls in Jiuzhaigou Valley, it will bring heart quakes to first time visitors. The green forests surround nineteen lakes of different sizes and levels. The lake water in the upper reaches flows slowly along the shoal and is divided into countless streams by the groves in the lake. Then the streams join on the top of Shuzheng Waterfall and suddenly drop down to the lower lakes. The sprays fly in the air, creating an elegant screen.
Nuorilang Waterfall is 32 meters (about 105 feet) wide and 25 meters (about 82 feet) tall, and it is the widest waterfall in Jiuzhaigou Valley. Nuorilang means 'grand and magnificent' in Tibetan, so it is a gorgeous waterfall. The top of the waterfall is very flat. It is said that originally there was no waterfall but a platform here long ago. Then a monk brought a spinning wheel when he returned to this place. A Tibetan girl learnt the skill of spinning very soon, so she carried the wheel to the platform and showed her sisters how to spin. The cruel man Roza considered that she was doing something evil and kicked her, as well as the spinning wheel off the cliff. In no time, torrents rushed Roza and his accomplices down the mountain, so the platform had turned into the waterfall. When the sun shines in the morning, flowery rainbows can be seen in the sky, which make the waterfall more charming and splendid.
Peacock River is 310 meters (about 1,017 feet) in length and wends along the deep valley with flowers and trees on its two sides. The water appears in a cacophony of varietous colors: dark green, golden, and sapphire blue. When autumn comes, the forests are covered with hoarfrosts and the fallen leaves are bestrewed all over the lake. When seen from above, the bright and clear water flows in a colorful world and it is like a peacock displaying its fine tail feathers.
Five-Flower Lake (Wuhua Lake):
The pride of Jiuzhaigou Valley, Five-Flower Lake lies at the end of the upper reach of Peacock River, 2,472 meters (about 8,110 feet) above the sea level and five meters (about 16 feet) in depth. Most of the colorful leaves are gathered in the lakefront and interlaced as brocades. The water that contains calcium carbonate as well as hydrophytes with different colors presents a versicolor sight, azure blue, blackish green and light yellow, etc, so it is named Five-Flower Lake. The local people say that it is a holy lake, and where there is the water, there must be flourishing flowers and trees. When looking down from the mountain, you will find that the lake with hills on three sides is just like a huge upended cucurbit pouring colorful water to the lower place.
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