Euphrates Poplar Forests at Ejina Banner

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Euphrates poplar (Populus euphratica), or Desert Poplar, is an ancient species of poplar tree in the willow family. The poplar trees change colors with seasons – green in spring and summer, yellow and golden on autumn, and red in winter. The Euphrates Poplar trees (Also known as Diversifolius Poplar) turning yellow in the deep summer offer a great photograph opportunity, very often attracting crowds of visitors.

The Euphrates Poplar trees in Ejina Banner ( Ejina Qi in Chinese ) of Alxa League ( Alashan ) in the west of Inner Mongolia in China is one of the three remaining natural Euphrates Poplar Forests (Also known as Diversifolius Poplar) in the world with a total forest area of 30,000 hectares. The other two huge areas of Euphrates Poplar Forests are Sahara Desert and Taklamakan Desert in Uygur Autonomous Region of Xinjiang of China . The whole area becomes a sea of golden leaves, enticing a consistent flow of tourists to enjoy the amazing scenery each year. In 1992, the Ejna Banner Euphrates Poplar Forest Nature Reserve was established there.

Recently years the local governments at all levels have made great efforts building a tourist friendly Euphrates Poplar Sightseeing District. Now it has become a hot tourist destination for tourists and photographers who flock here to view the magnificent golden fairyland. When you plan your Inner Mongolia Tour, or especially the West Inner Mongolia Tour, Ejina Euphrates Poplar Forests is a big draw that you should not miss.

The Best Time to Go
While plan your trip to Ejina Banner for viewing Euphrates Poplar, you should understand the best time for the fall foliage. Basically the half month from October 01 through October 15 is the most ideal period for seeing the yellow and golden leaves of the Euphrates Poplar trees in Ejina.

How to Get There
Located far west of Inner Mongolia and bordering Mongolia, Ejina Banner is difficult to take public transport to get there. Self-drive is the most popular mode of travel visiting the poplar forests. It is a scenic drive that allows you to see the massive and mesmerizing Badain Jaran Desert. You may drive to Ejina from Bayanhot (650km), Jiayuguan (37okm), and Hohhot (1600km).

Entrance Fee and Where to Stay
The Euphrates Poplar Sightseeing District is just located on the east of Dalaihubu Town (达来呼布镇) , the seat of the Ejina Banner Government. So you may book a hotel , or put up in a tent in the town of Dalaihubu. Homestay is also a good alternative.

Entrance fee: RMB 170 ( including the shuttle bus service inside the scenic area).

How to Visit the Ejina Euphrates Poplar Sightseeing District
The paid sightseeing area is located on the east of Dalaihubu Town ( the seat of Ejinan Banner). The whole area is about 20 km long, 15 km wide at the widest and one km at the narrowest. The whole belt is peppered with Euphrates poplar trees, red willow frees and desert bushes.

The whole poplar area is mainly composed of four sectons – Erdaoqiao (二道桥), Sidaoqiao(四道桥), Qidaoqiao(七道桥) and Badaoqiao (八道桥). The Erdaoqiao Section is close to the west entrance ( adjacent to the town of Dalaihubu) and Badaqiao is the east end of the sightseeing belt on the east entrance to the sightseeing belt.

Euphrates Poplar Sightseeing Tips

1. See Sunrise at Badaqiao (八道桥)
Badaqiao Sightseeing Area is actually the northern edge of Badain Jaran Desert, one of the best places to see the sunrise over sand dunes and play on the desert. This section is the furthest from the Town of Dalaihuba. I recommend you get up early to catch the early shuttle bus from the west gate and go to the furthest section of Badaoqiao to see the sunrise, then come back to visit Qidaoqiao, Sidaoqiao and Erdaoqiao on a return trip.

When we get to Badaqiao, we see many tourist standing on the sand dunes and waiting for the sunrise. Busy shooting the rising sun, cameras and mobiles

Busy shooting the rising sun, cameras and mobiles

Busy shooting the rising sun, cameras and mobiles

The camel man riding a camel on a high dune is going back and forth to pose for the tourists on the scene.

Sunrise over the sand dunes with camels on the top

Sunrise over the sand dunes with camels on the top

2. See Euphrates Poplar at Qidaoqiao (七道桥)
After seeing the sunrise at Badaqiao and simple breakfast at the foot of the sand dunes, we continue to get on a shuttle bus for the next section of Qidaoqiao. Qidaoqiao is home to the youngest poplar trees in Ejina Euphrates Poplar Forest. They are the first poplar trees to turn yellow and golden.

A wooden path winds through the Qidaqiao Area and you don’t have to retrace. Both entrances at Qidaoqiao have shuttle bus stations that brings you to the next destination.

People stroll on the board walkway, enjoying the scenery on the both sides.

People stroll on the board walkway, enjoying the scenery on the both sides.

People stroll on the board walkway, enjoying the scenery on the both sides.

Feeling as if you were in a wonderland of the golden world.

Feeling as if you were in a wonderland of the golden world.

Feeling as if you were in a wonderland of the golden world.

 

3. Amazed by the “Heroic Euphrates Poplar” at Sidaoqiao (四道桥)
The Euphrates Polar trees at Sidaoqiao are old and massive, telling us a story of “audacity” in the face of the arid and hard land for centuries. Euphrates Poplar trees are said to “exist for three thousand years – live for one thousand years, dead for one thousand years and rotten for one thousand years”. Here you are able to feel the “Heroism” of the old poplar trees.

Take the shuttle bus from Qidaoqiao to Sidaoqiao.

Take the shuttle bus from Qidaoqiao to Sidaoqiao.

Take the shuttle bus from Qidaoqiao to Sidaoqiao.

Fallen, but not collapsed

Fallen, but not collapsed

Fallen, but not collapsed

Collapsed, but not rotten.

Collapsed, but not rotten.

Collapsed, but not rotten.

 

4. Enjoy the reflections of Poplar Trees on water at Erdaoqiao (二道桥)
Erdaoqiao is my favorite section to view the Euphrates Poplar trees. Here you are able to catch the wonderful views of Euphrates Poplar mirrored on water.

A row or Euphrates Poplar Trees are mirrored on the water, an amazing spectacle.

A row or Euphrates Poplar Trees are mirrored on the water, an amazing spectacle.

A row or Euphrates Poplar Trees are mirrored on the water, an amazing spectacle.

Golden Poplar trees, drying river bed and wooden bridge.

Golden Poplar trees, drying river bed and wooden bridge.

Golden Poplar trees, drying river bed and wooden bridge.

Posed in front of an old Euphrates Poplar tree by the river.

Posed in front of an old Euphrates Poplar tree by the river.

Posed in front of an old Euphrates Poplar tree by the river.

The West Entrance to Ejina Euphrates Poplar Sightseeing Area.

The West Entrance to Ejina Euphrates Poplar Sightseeing Area.

The West Entrance to Ejina Euphrates Poplar Sightseeing Area.

Add on
A Glimpse of Badain Jaran Desert
Heicheng Ruins in Ejina Qi, Inner Mongolia

Any questions, just drop a line.

 

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