The Heavenly Lake nestles on the northern side of the Bogeda Peak of the Tianshan Mountains,40-odd kilometers in the east of Fukang county, and 120 kilometers away from Urumqi City in Northwest,Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region,China.In 1783,Ming Liang,the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911)Commander of Urumqi Army Commanding Zone,named the lake“Tianchi”Lake, or the Heavenly Lake.It covers the area of 3 square kilometers,105 meters deep at the deepest point,and 40 meters deep in average,this crescent-shaped lake deserves its name.“Pearl of the Heavenly Mountain (Tianshan Mountain)”.With melted snow as its source,the Heavy Lake enjoys crystal water.The Bogeda Peak, 5445 meters above sea level, is the highest peak of the eastern part of the Tianshan Mountains.
As if the natural beauty of the Heavenly Lake is not enough,legend adds a mysterious touch.It is said that more than 3,000 years ago,the Queen of the Western Region (Xi Wang Mu) entertained King Zhoumu of the Western Zhou Dynasty (11th century-771BC)at the Lake and held court feasts.Others say it was the pond for the Queen to take bath,with the mist on the lake considered the clothes for the Queen Mother, and the lesser Heavenly Lake near by as the basin for her to wash her feet.
The number of tourists to the Heavenly Lake is on the constant increase. The Heavenly Lake is an alpine drift lake shaped in the Quaternary Glacie period,and was listed by the State as one of the key scenic spots in 1982 Besides,it is an AAAA Grade scenic spots. Generally,there are eight famous attraction spots,a few cultural relics and eye catching mountains standing in the Heaven Lake. In winter the beautiful lake is an ideal ski rink.
Situated on the northern side of Bogda Peak of Tianshan Mountains,the Heavenly Lake Nature Reserve covers 380-odd square kilometers,including 18 modern glaciers,3 rivers,18 lakes of which the Heavenly Lake ls the most famed one. It is also abundant in forest and animal resources Apart from the dragon spruces, there arc above 200 kinds of seed plants, 24 kinds of animals,50 kinds of birds, 2 kinds of reptiles, 1 kind of amphibian,and 3 kinds of fishes,offering scientists great research promises in glaciers,hydrology geology and alpine plants and animals. In 1980 it was authorised by the Stare as a national nature reserve.
As one of the popular tour destinations in Xinjiang, where you can not only see the alpine lakes surrounded by mountains, but also visit the snow-capped mountains and tall Pinus yunnanensis forests.
What to visit in Heavenly Lake?
There are three pools in Tianchi Scenic Area. Besides the main lake, in has two pools on the East and West sides of Heavenly Lake. "Black Dragon Pool", is situated at 500 metres east of Tianchi, in this area you can not only enjoy the beautiful landscape of Heavenly Lake, but also enxperience the feeling that the water flowed down from a height of 3,000 feet, as if the bright galactic water had fallen from nine days, and that is quite fabulous.
West small Heavenly Lake:
West Xiaotianchi Lake is located in the northwest of Tianchi Lake, with an elevation of 1600 metres. the environment of the scenic area is quiet and secluded, and the pond is surrounded by spruce, which is quite spectacular.
Temple of the Queen Mother of the West:
Let's continue to visit, on the East side of Heavenly Lake, you will visit the Temple of the Queen Mother of the West, which was built in the Yuan Dynasty. What we see now is the building that was rebuilt on the site of the original temple in 1999, in which the Queen Mother is enshrined, so it is also called "the Temple of the Queen Mother". The sightseeing bus is near the East side of Tianchi, when you walk along the trestle road to the Queen Mother Temple on the West Bank for about 1.5 hours, because of the distance and the general scenery, so tourists are not recommended to go there on a special trip.
When is the best time to visit Heavenly Lake?
In midsummer, Tianchi is a good summer resort. In winter, it is also a paradise of winter sports enthusiastic.
Every June to August are the best seasons for Tianshan tourism, with the beautiful green grasslands, golden wild flowers, snow capped mountains, cattle and sheep flocks, endless golden rapeseed flowers plus simple national customs, which constitute a beautiful picture scroll.
The annual Tianshan Tianchi Ice and Snow Festival will be held here from mid-November to the end of March, at that time, visitors can go skiing or other winter exercises in Tianshan Skiing Ground near the scenic area.
How to get there?
1. Tourists can take a bus from the People's Park or Hongshan Hotel in Urumqi to Tianchi Scenic Area
2. Tourists can take coach from Urumqi North Suburb Passenger Station to Fukang county, the journey is about 2 hours and the fare is 15 RMB.
Travel tips of Heavenly Lake:
1. The temperature difference between day and night in Tianchi Scenic Area, meanwhile, visitors are suggested to bring some warm clothes.
2. Ultraviolet radiation is very strong all the year round, especially in summer, tourists should bring some sunscreen products.
The ticket price of Heavenly Lake:
Peak season: 125 RMB/Person
Off season: 60 RMB/Person
The sightseeing Bus Ticket: 90 RMB/Person
Peak season: 1st April to 31st October ( 9.00 AM to 7.30 PM )
Off season: 1st November to 31st March ( 10.00 AM to 6.00 PM )
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