Scene Introduction

XiangchengXiangcheng is a county under the administration of the Ganzi Tibetan Autonomous Region of Sichuan province. Located at an elevation of 3200m, It is used as primarily as an overnight-stop on the route to Shangri-la (aka Zhongdian) from Litang or Yading or vice versa but it is quite a pleasant town to stop. Coming over the mountain passes from either direction (Bamu Mountains from Litang), you'll at once see the beautiful villages scattered amongst wheat-field-paddies in the valley ground. The large, cubicle houses look like little castles and with their white-chalked exterior walls. Xiangcheng town occupies a high ridge above the river gorge and consists of an old village paired with a modern Chinese downtown. Above the town is large renovated Chaktreng Monastery of Gelukpa sect with great views of the town and the valley below.

Xiangcheng in Tibetan language means "rosaries in Buddha's hands". A few years ago it was a wee village. Today, a bustling rural town, with some great restaurants and pleasant outdoor cafes, at which it's easy to make friends with the locals. Recent years have seen quite a bit of development, with spanking new hotels and other buildings standing in stark contrast to the traditional square - shaped stone houses in which most of the residents still live. The town is surrounded by gorgeous scenery on all sides, located alongside the Shuqu River, those banks are lined with large attractive Tibetan houses. It is very isolated - the road to Litang is about 200 km north along a rough road, while the southerly route to Shangri-la can become impassable in the rainy season. On the back road from Yunnan into Sichuan, Xiangcheng hasn't seen much in the way of foreigner traffic. However, for the local truck drivers who ply this Litang to Shangri-la route on their way to and from Tibet, it is an important stopover.

Atractions around Xiangcheng including Xiangcheng Monastery (originally built in 1669 by the Kagyu sect), Sangpi Monastery, Reda Monastery, Zhendoubaixi Monastery, Baiyidingzhen Monastery and Yachong Monastery. Rongrao Mountain, 28 km out of the town, is an important holy site, with its lava caves for Kamba lions. Ranwu hot springs, and other scenic visits are Niting valley, Zhangji big waterfall, Bamu lakes Scenery Area, Bamu Mountains, Saobuyou Scenic Area, Maxionggou Valley, and Sagou Holy Mountains. 

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