Inspired Travel: Zhangjiajie National Forest

by  Amanda Black | Apr 27, 2013
Zhangjiajie National Park, China
Zhangjiajie National Park, China / Lukas Bischoff/iStock

It's hard to dream up a place like the floating Hallelujah Mountains from Avatar. Luckily, the producers and directors didn't have to look too far afield, just to China's Zhangjiajie National Forest Park. The stone peaks covered in vegetation tower high into the air - some are over 3,000 feet tall. Located in the northern part of the southeastern Hunan Province of China, the mountains are quite strikingly covered in dense vegetation due to the moist weather year-round. 

The park was established in 1982 as the first national park in China. Ten years later, the park was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In 2010, China officially renamed one of the most popular peaks, Southern Sky Column, to Avatar Hallelujah Mountain.

The combination of the mountainous terrain and the moist climate creates an ideal sub-tropical climate, meaning that you can visit the park year-round with bearable temperatures even in the winter.

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