Tanziling Scenic Area – Ticket, Opening Hours, Location, and Highlights

tanziling scenic area

Tanziling Scenic Area (坛子岭) derives its name from its peak, resembling an inverted jar (Tanzi), standing at an elevation of 262.48 meters. Initially a site for surveying the Three Gorges Dam construction, it now serves as an exceptional vantage point to behold the panoramic view of the Three Gorges project. From the observation platform atop Tanziling, visitors witness the grandeur of the dam, whose white structure spans the tranquil Yangtze River. During flood seasons, the dam gates open, revealing a powerful rush of water resembling a torrent of galloping horses. Additionally, within view, lies the dual five-step ship lock, where boats patiently await passage through the lock. This scenic area offers a captivating vista not only of the majestic dam but also of the dynamic forces and engineering marvels at work within the Three Gorges region.


Table of Contents


Basic Information

Estimated Length of Tour1 hour
Ticket PriceFree
Opening Hours8.00 -17.00

Location and Transportation

Tanziling is located within the Three Gorges Dam Tourist area, Hubei Province. To there, you can choose one of the following ways:

From downtown Yichang, at the entrance of Daxia Three Gorges International Travel Agency (80 Dongshan Avenue), hop on the tourist shuttle directly to the tourist transfer center within the scenic area. Two shuttles depart daily at 8:30 AM and 2:00 PM. The round trip costs about 40 yuan, taking approximately one hour each way.

Alternatively, from Yichang’s downtown area, head to the Three Gorges Tourist Center (142 Jianghan Avenue). Two daily buses depart for the tourist transfer center within the scenic area at 8:00 AM and between 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM. The fare is around 45 yuan.


Highlights of Tanziling Scenic Area

Copper Plate Reliefs

copper plate reliefs in tanziling scenic area

At the heart of Tanziling is a set of large copper plate reliefs on the altar’s four sides. On the front, three robust figures join hands, swirling in the water, resembling the turbines of a waterwheel. This depiction symbolizes the powerful force of water as the source of all life. Above them is a tiger, and below is a phoenix, representing the geographical and cultural context of the Three Gorges project. The dam area lies between the ancient lands of Ba and Chu, where the Ba people revered the tiger, and the Chu people revered the phoenix. Moving to the sides, one depicts a modern man overlaid with an image of Yu the Great, both holding tools – a symbol of China’s enduring tradition in water management. Another side shows scenes related to the legendary twelve fairies who helped Yu control the floods and later transformed into the Twelve Peaks of Wushan, as well as scenes from the construction of the Three Gorges Dam and the resettlement of the affected communities.


Riverbed Stones

riverbed stone in tanziling scenic area

The riverbed stones displayed at Tanziling are sourced from the foundation pit of the Three Gorges Dam. Composed of granite and dating back 800 million years, these stones provide a tangible connection to the ancient history of the Yangtze River. With their geological features and the drill holes left by early hydroelectric experts and geologists, these stones offer insights into the profound changes the river has witnessed over time. They serve as a reminder of the passage of time and the expertise of the pioneers who laid the groundwork for the Three Gorges Dam project.


Diversion Stone

diversion stone in tanziling scenic area

Weighing a staggering 28 tons, the Diversion Stone stands as the symbol of water control. Shaped like a triangular pyramid, its design is optimized for withstanding strong currents, ensuring stability. When released into the water, its sharp edges swiftly embed into the riverbed, effectively obstructing the impact of rushing waters. This stone has become an iconic representation of modern hydraulic engineering. Beneath the Diversion Stone lies a sunken plaza with a diameter of 20 meters, intricately designed in the shape of the Bagua, symbolizing the support for the Three Gorges project from all directions and the favorable conditions for its construction.


Book Sculpture

book sculpture in tanziling scenic area

A colossal iron book sculpture, adorned with relevant information about the Three Gorges project, stands prominently. This monumental book symbolizes the enduring history of the Chinese nation, and now, it has turned to the page chronicling the construction of the Three Gorges project. The development of the Three Gorges project has added a vibrant chapter to the historical narrative of the Chinese people, illustrating a significant milestone. As this monumental book unfolds, it signifies not only the past achievements but also foreshadows the creation of even greater wonders in the future.


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