Sichuan Tourism Cities

Ya'an Travel Guide


sichuan map.jpgYa'an City is a prefecture-level city which is situated in the center of Sichuan Province on the upper reaches of the Yangtze River. Located at the western edge of the Sichuan Basin , Ya'an City is bounded on the east by Chengdu, by Garze in the west, with Liangshan and Aba bordering south and north.

Facts of Ya'an

Chinese Name: 雅安市 (yǎ ān shì)
Population: 1,540,000  
Area: 15,354 square kilometers (5,928 square miles) 
Nationalities: Han
Administrative Division: 1 district (Yucheng); 7 counties (Mingshan, Yingjing, Hanyuan, Shimian, Tianquan, Lushan, Baoxing)   
Seat of the City Government: 6, Hanbei Lu, Yucheng District,Ya'an City,Sichuan Province


History of Ya'an

Previously known as Yazhou-fu, the city is first mentioned during the Zhou Dynasty (1122-255 BCE). It served as a county seat during the Qin and Han Dynasties, but was subsequently taken by nomadic tribes. After being reintegrated into the Chinese Empire in the late 5th century, it was made the seat of the Ya Prefecture in 604. The modern Ya'an county was established in 1912. It became the provincial capital of Xikang province in 1951, but has been a municipality under the administration of Sichuan province since 1955, when Xikang province was merged and became a part of Sichuan province.  On April 20, 2013, the city was hit by a major earthquake, causing numerous casualties and heavy damage to housing and infrastructure.


Geography of Ya'an

Ya'an is located at the western edge of the Sichuan Basin and on the upper reaches of the Yangtze, covering the transition between the Chengdu Plain and the Tibetan Plateau.  It has complex landforms and the terrain rolls intensely. Daxiang Ling (or Niba Mountain) traverses the center of the city.


What to see in Ya'an

Ya’an is also known for one of China’s very popular animals: panda. The first pandas in the area were discovered during the 1860s by a French missionary. Since then, large pandas can be seen, particularly in the Bifeng Gorge Panda Base. Aside from being a breeding facility, it also serves as a preservation and research center. Here lists top Ya'an Attractions:

Bifeng GorgeShangli Old TownYaan Langqiao
        Bifeng Gorge Panda Base                   Shangli Old Town                 Ya'an Covered Bridge

When to visit Ya'an?

Ya'an City lies in the subtropical climatic zone where humid, monsoon-like conditions can exist.  The Ya'an weather in northern and southern DaXiang Ling varies greatly and the climate differs as the terrain changes. Its annual average temperature is around 16℃ (60.8℉). It is truly a rain city. There is rain 180 days of a year. Despite the humid conditions, the city is still a year-round tourist destination. However, it is a good idea to be cautious during the rainy season in summer, as accidents caused by floods can occur.


How to get to Ya'an?

Every year, thousands of travelers, especially the locals, head to Ya’an to experience the more laid-back way of living and to see the giant pandas the city is highly known for. If you’re interested to know how to get there, you can use any of the following options:


Ya'an is 130 kilometers (81 miles) from Chengdu and only fifty minutes' drive from the Chengdu Shuangliu International Airport. It links central Sichuan to the three ethnic minority prefectures (Garze, Aba and Liangshan).

The city does not have an airport or docks, and Wusihe Railway Station in Hanyuan County is the only railway station. Road transportation is especially important here. Through the Chengdu-Ya'an Expressway, the city can be reached from the center of the province Chengdu in only one hour. Buses are available in the New South Gate Bus Station at 57, as well as Linjiang Lu of downtown Chengdu.

After reaching Ya'an, visitors can find buses to its scenic spots and buses back to Chengdu in these bus stations:
Ya'an Bus Station: 68, Hebei Jie, Yucheng District
Ya'an Tourist Station: 17, Ximen Bei Lu, Yucheng District


Ya'an Travel Tips

Special Local Products: tea, bamboo shoots, Ya Fish (scientific name: Schizothorax prenanti), Chinese mushrooms, Chinese gooseberries, snow pears, cherry wine of Hanyan County, the root carvings of Lushan County, and black pottery of Yingjing County

Festivals in Ya'an:  Ya’an today isn’t as bustling as the other locations in China, even in Sichuan Province. It doesn’t have its own airport; a lot of travelers need to go through Chengdu’s airport, and the travel time can take around 40 minutes to more than an hour, depending on your chosen mode of transport.  However, it still gets its fair share of tourists because of its great attractions and entertainment such as its different festivals. It is famous for the Torch Festival, which is celebrated in the month of June. It is a familial affair to celebrate their freedom from a warlord. They set up various activities including horse racing and wrestling. They also wear their native costumes.

Ya'an Earthquake 2013: A 7.0 magnitude earthquake attacked the Lushan County of Ya’an City in Sichuan Province at 08:02 am on April 20, 2013. According to Xinhua News Agency, 196 people were killed and 11,470 injured in the quake region. 

Useful Telephone Numbers: 
Tourist Complaints: 0835-2223073 
Weather Forecast: 121
Zip Code Inquiry: 184
Bank of China: 67, Qiangjiang Nan Lu, Yucheng District
China Post: 131, Qiangjiang Nan Lu, Yucheng District,Ya'an City,Sichuan Province.


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