What Is Unique About China's Tianzi Mountain?

The peaks of the Tianzi Mountain.
The peaks of the Tianzi Mountain.

The Tianzi Mountain is found in Zhangjiajie City which is in turn located in the Hunan Province, close to the Suoxi Valley, in China. More specifically, the Tianzi Mountain is situated in the northwestern parts of Wulinyuan Scenic Area which is in Wulingyuan District. The district is part of the larger Zhangjiajie City.

The mountain range covers an area of around 21 square miles and a length of around 25 miles. The main peak of the mountain range rises an incredible 4,142 feet above sea level. The second highest peak, by comparison, has a measly height of 1,817 feet.


The habitat around the mountain is characterized by several rocks with the peaks covered by plenty of flowers, shrubs, trees, and grass. This provides the perfect habitat for a wide range of wildlife such as birds to reside in the range. The mountains also have plenty of waterfalls, caves made out of limestone, rivers, lakes, and other features that make it suitable for wildlife.


The mountain’s name came from a farmer by the name of Xiang Dakun who belonged to the Tujia tribe. The farmer led a successful revolt of the farmers and elected to name himself “Tianzi.” Tianzi is the traditional nickname that Chinese emperors were given. The name means “son of heaven.”

The uniqueness of the mountain can be seen from the splendid sights that it provides. Some of the sights include a sea of clouds that seem to be at the top of the peaks, snow-covered rocky peaks in the winter, and other attractions.

The range’s formation is also unique. Researchers state that there used to be an old ocean, more than 300 million years ago, in the region sitting on top of a layer of sedimentary rocks which became the quartz sandstones found in the region today. These extremely ancient rocks now cover the peaks of the Tianzi Mountain. Some of the quartz rocks capping the mountain are as thick as 1,970 feet.


The Tianzi Mountain is a popular tourist destination managed by the national forest service. Spring and fall is the best time to visit and explore especially in April and October. Attractions awaiting visitors in the area include the likes of Shentang Gulf which is as of yet untouched by people and looks like a mythical place. Fields in the Air is another attraction that rises 3280 feet above sea level with treacherous chasms at the side. At the top of the fields is a terraced field covering 0.0116 square miles. Others include the Stage of Appointing Commander, Helong Park, Bridge of Immortals, Tianzi Peak, and many more.

The Mountain became even more popular after it inspired the 2010 blockbuster film called “Avatar” which led to the mountain unofficially called the “Avatar Hallelujah Mountain.”


The main threat posed by the mountains stems from the treacherous landscape. The incredible heights will easily kill anyone who falls, so safety is a huge priority. However, there have been no reported deaths. Aside from this safety precaution, the mountain is a great site that attars more than 30 million tourists annually.


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