Yajiang Travel Guide

Planning a trip to Yajiang, China? Learn about the must-see attractions, best hiking/biking routes, food and drink scene, where to stay, local culture, safety tips, and more in our comprehensive Yajiang travel guide.

Yajiang Travel Guide - Discover the Best Places to Visit

Located in the Ganzi Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Sichuan Province, Yajiang is a destination that will leave you breathless with its stunning scenery and rich culture. This comprehensive travel guide will help you plan your trip to Yajiang, from the best places to visit to the must-try regional dishes and local customs.

Introduction to Yajiang

Yajiang is a small town tucked away in a valley along the Dadu River. It has been a significant stop along the ancient Tea-Horse Road, an important trading route connecting Yunnan, Sichuan, and Tibet. The town boasts of stunning natural beauty, including snow-capped mountains, deep gorges, and verdant forested hills.

List of Places to Visit in Yajiang

Culturally Important Attractions: Museums and Historical Places

  • Yajiang Monastery - this 300-year-old monastery is a serene place, with intricate gold-leafed statues and murals.
  • Tea Horse Road History Museum - the museum displays the history of the Tea Horse Road and how it shaped the region’s culture, economy, and trade.
  • Yajiang Bridge - An ancient bridge, about 800 years old, that was once an important transportation hub for the region’s merchants.

Natural Attractions of Yajiang: Outdoor Adventures and Scenic Views

  • Mount Balang - A stunning mountain with an elevation of 5,290 meters, it’s a popular spot for hiking and nature enthusiasts.
  • Dadu River Gorge - A dramatic canyon with white-water rapids and waterfalls, suitable for rafting.
  • Chola Mountain Scenic Area - A vast national park with wildly varied landscapes and ample opportunities for outdoor exploration.

Hiking/Biking Routes of Yajiang

  • Mount Siguniangshan Trek - This iconic hike is known as one of China’s most stunning hikes, with jagged peaks, colorful wildflowers and pristine views. The trek takes about 4-6 days but is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
  • Huanglong Mountain Forest Park - A gorgeous mountainous forest and valley which is perfect for more casual hikes, whether you’re an avid hiker or beginner.

Best Things to Do in Yajiang: Activities and Tours

  • Yajiang Jeep Tour - A thrilling off-road jeep tour takes you on rough and rugged terrain where you can discover hidden beauty and local culture.
  • Tea Plantation Tour - A visit to the tea plantations surrounding Yajiang can give you insight into the process of tea planting and farming.
  • Mount Balang Ski Resort - A skiing destination in winter, this resort attracts thousands of visitors who come to experience slopes’ thrill.

Week-Long Itinerary for Yajiang

Day Activity
1 Visit Yajiang Monastery and Tea Horse Road Museum
2-3 Hike to siguniangshan and stay for a night
4 Visit Dadu River Gorge and enjoy rafting
5-6 Explore Chola Mountain Scenic Area
7 Return to Yajiang for souvenir shopping before leaving Yajiang

Food and Drink Scene of Yajiang

Must-Try Dishes

  • Yak Meat - With yak being a Tibetan staple, this dish is made in various forms, from yak burgers to yak hotpot.
  • Tibetan Butter Tea - A common drink across Tibet, butter tea, is made from Yak milk and mixed with tea leaves, salt, and butter.
  • Tsampa - A staple of the Tibetan diet, tsampa, is made from roasted barley flour, mixed with butter tea and served with a side of vegetables.

Local Beverages

  • Chang - A locally brewed beer, made from fermented barley, maize, and millet.
  • Sweet tea - A refreshing drink, perfect for summertime and made with boiled water, tea leaves, and sugar.

Where to Stay in Yajiang: Hotels, Hostels, and Guesthouses

  • Yajiang Fengdanbao Hotel - A comfortable hotel with modern amenities, including air conditioning and Wi-Fi.
  • Yajiang Hostelling International - For those on a budget or looking for a social experience with fellow travelers, this hostel is perfect.
  • Yajiang Jinkang Inn - A rustic inn with great mountain views and local Tibetan style decor.

What to Buy in Yajiang: Souvenirs and Local Products to Bring Home

  • Tibetan handicrafts - Beautifully crafted Tibetan rugs, prayer flags, and intricate Tibetan art.
  • Tibetan Knife - A knife with a distinct Tibetan design, can be great for your collection.

Local Culture and Customs of Yajiang

  • Tibetan Culture - Yajiang is a significant cultural center of the Tibetan nomadic lifestyle, rich with traditions and customs passed down generations.
  • Greetings - Tibetans greet one another by pressing their palms together, bowing their heads and saying “Tashidelek!”

Best Time to Visit Yajiang

The best months to visit Yajiang are from May to October when the weather is mild and dry, making outdoor activities more enjoyable.

Do’s and Don’ts of Yajiang


  • Respect local customs and dress modestly, especially when visiting monasteries.
  • Try the regional dishes, including the yak meat and Tsampa.
  • Plan for high-altitude surroundings, and take your time acclimatizing to the altitude properly.


  • Take photos inside the monasteries without seeking permission from the monks.
  • Disrespect the local culture, especially their customs, way of life, and religious beliefs.
  • Leave litter or trash in the area’s natural scenery, uphold environmental preservation principles.

Safety and Health

Safety in Yajiang

Yajiang is a relatively safe place, with low crime rates, but travelers should take precautions to secure their valuables and be aware of their surroundings.

Health in Yajiang

The high altitude of the region can present some challenges to the unacclimated. Visitors should hydrate well, take enough rest, and take slow and easy steps to acclimate to the high altitude.

Getting to Yajiang: Transportation Options and Logistics

Airports Near Yajiang

  • Kangding Airport - The nearest airport, about 80 kilometers from Yajiang, serves as a significant transit hub for the region.
  • Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport - A major Chinese airport about 300 kilometers from Yajiang, with international and domestic flights.

Bus Stations Near Yajiang

  • Yajiang Bus Station - Located in the town center, it serves destinations within Sichuan Province.

Other Options

  • Car hire - Hiring a car with a driver is also a popular option for getting to Yajiang and exploring the surrounding area.

How to Get Around in Yajiang

Getting around Yajiang can be done by bike, taxi, or car hire. Public transportation is also available, with regular buses connecting the town center to the surrounding towns and villages.

Where to Go Next from Yajiang: Nearby Destinations and Excursions

  • Kangding - A town located at the Eastern edge of the Tibetan Plateau, famous for its stunning natural landscapes and local Tibetan culture.
  • Daocheng Yading - Located about 4 hours away by car, this remote area is known for its three sacred peaks, where several high-altitude hikes can be found.


Yajiang is a hidden gem, rich with natural wonders, culture and traditions, and stunning landscapes. From hiking and scenic views, cultural exploration to down-to-earth local cuisine, Yajiang should be on every traveler’s bucket list. The region itself is full of beautiful surprises and hidden experiences that make it a unique and authentic destination.