Best time to visit Jiuzhaigou (Tips, Photos & Map)

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Plan your Jiuzhaigou tour? Jiuzhaigou, aka Jiuzhai Valley National Park is a nature reserve in the north of Sichuan Province, well known for colorful lakes, waterfalls, Tibetan villages & rare wildlife. It takes one and half hours’ drive from Jiuzhagou to Jiuzhai Huanglong Airport, which brings you back to Chengdu for a one hour’s flight.

Jiuzhaigou and Sichuan Jiuzhai Huanglong Airport (Google)
It takes one and half hours’ drive from Jiuzhagou to Jiuzhai Huanglong Airport

Jiuzhaigou (Jiuzhai Valley) is not only famous for its beauty but also its pleasant weather. It belongs to the moisture plateau climate. The rainfall in Jiuzhaigou is very little but concentrating. July and August are the two typical rain seasons.

Nuo Ri Lang Waterfalls in Jiuzhaigou

When is the best time to visit Jiuzhaigou? Most people think autumn gives the most beautiful scenery of Jiuzhaigou Valley.

Best Time to Visit Jiuzhaigou

September through November is the best time to visit Jiuzhaigou.  October 15 through 30 is the golden time for viewing colorful leaves.

October 15 through 30, the golden time for colours.

In fact, different seasons give Jiuzhaigou different kind of beauty. It all depends on your budget, tolerance for large crowds, your personal interests and, another time of year may suit you better.

Check out below to have some information on each season:

Jiuzhaigou in Spring ( March – May)

Jiuzhaigou spring is from March till the end of May. As spring approaches, rivers are swelling. There is strong sunlight in Jiuzhaigou because of the plateau landscape there.

Jiuzhaigou in spring has strong ultraviolet radiation. Bring your sunglasses,  sunblock. Big temperature between day and night, still need to wear winter clothes in the evening.

Late March in Jiuzhaigou is still quite chilly, a big temperature difference between day and night, you still need to wear a winter jacket in the evening. Average temperature: 17 ℃(day ) and 7℃ (night).

It may rain during the day, bringing your rain jacket. Late March is not the best season to visit Jiuzhaigou, a bit cold and the trees are not very much green.

But its advantage is that you can have discounts for entrance fees and less crowded in the scenic area since it is still in low tourist season. After all, it is not bad to visit Jiuzhaigou in late March.

Jiuzhaigou in Summer (June – August)

Summer in Jiuzhaigou starts from June and ends in August. At that time every where of Jiuzhaigou is green: green mountains, green water and green trees. Jiuzhaigou is not hot in summer except those places blazed down by sun.

Summer is also the rainy season of Jiuzhaigou. There will be suddenly rain there. It will be the best time for taking photos after rains. You should not miss your sunglasses, sunbonnet, sun lotion and umbrella.

Jiuzhaigou in Autumn (September – October )

Jiuzhaigou Valley enjoys its most beautiful appearance in fall. The sky is bright and clear. The colorful leaves and tourists are reflected on the bright and clear lakes and fallen leaves are floating on the surface of water.

Your eyes are filled with the most beautiful view of the natural world. You will be surprising of the masterpiece by nature!

By the way, the difference in temperature between day and night is bigger in autumn, take a thick coat with you.

Jiuzhaigou in Autumn

Foliage Color Coverage in Jiuzhaigou:

Class No.01 (Oct 15 – 18): Foliage color coverage 10%~35%,yellow color, a good time for viewing colorful leaves.
Class No.02(Oct 18 – 22 ): Foliage color coverage 35%~60%,yellow and orange, a very good time for fall foliage.
Class No.03(Oct 22 – Nov.02): Foliage color coverage 60%~95%,red and purple colors, the best time for leaf peeping.

So Mid or the end of October is the best time for viewing colorful leaves.

The temperature in October is average 10℃(night)and 23℃(day). I suggest you still need to bring sweaters or even winter clothes like down jackets. The weather in Jiuzhaigou is changeable and often showers since Jiuzhaigou sits at the sea-level over 3000m

Jiuzhaigou in Winter (November – February)

Jiuzhaigou Nature Park enters into winter from mid-Nov to mid March. In winter, Jiuzhaigou Nature Park is snowy from time to time. Jiuzhaigou is covered by snow and turns into a pure white world. White is the theme color in winter of Jiuzhaigou.

It is a low season to travel Jiuzhaigou, so you can save money if you go there in winter.

Jiuzhaigou in Winter
Jiuzhaigou in Winter

By the way,  be aware of Altitude Sickness at Jiuzhaigou, especially Huanglong is located over  3000 meters above sea level. To avoid possible altitude sickness, you are strongly advised to be prep for the travel at high sea level.

1) Don’t talk too much on the way
2) Don’t take a bath on the first day
3) Don’t drink alcohol
4) Ready for some altitude medicine or  canisters of oxygen

Organized Jiuzhaigou and Huanglong Tour

If you don’t want to plan a do-it-yourself trip, here are some options for guided tours to Jiuzhaigou and Huanglong:

3 Day Huanglong Jiuzhaigou Tour package
4 Day Chengdu Jiuzhaigou Tour
5 Day Chengdu Jiuzhaigou Huanglong Tour
Jiuzhaigou Tour

Further Readings

Jiuzhai Huanglong Airport
Drive from Jiuzhai Huanglong Airport to Huanglong
Huanglong Scenic Area
Drive from Huanglong to Jiuzhaigou
Jiuzhaigou Trip

Bipenggou, Bipeng Valley (Tips, Photos & Map)
Best time to visit Jiuzhaigou
Best Places to Visit Autumn Leaves in Sichuan
Top 10 Places to Visit in Sichuan
Ruoergai Grassland, my first trip to Ruoergai Grassland

Top 10 Attractions in Chengdu
Best Time to Visit Chengdu
Chengdu Airport
Railway stations in Chengdu
Chengdu Taxi
Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding
How to visit Wuhou Shrine
How to visit Du Fu Thatched Cottage
How to visit Jinsha Site Museum
How to Visit Tomb of Wangjian
How to Visit Wangjiang Tower Park
How to Visit Qingyang Taoist Temple
How to Visit Jinli Street
How to visit Kuan Alley and Zhai Alley
How to visit Qintai Road, Qintai Street Chengdu
How to visit Shaoling Road Bar Street
How to Visit Jiuyanqiao Bar Street
The Old Teahouse in Pengzhen Town, Chengdu

Any questions, just drop a line

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121 Responses to “Best time to visit Jiuzhaigou (Tips, Photos & Map)”

  1. Lisa says:

    I’m planning on coming out in mid May. Since that is the end of spring/almost beginning of summer, will the colors be vibrant? I’m not expecting it to be as beautiful as in the fall but will it be worth the trip? Also, is May a busy time of year?
    Thank you!

  2. Daniel says:

    Hello Lisa,

    May is the high tourism in Jiuzhaigou. Please avoid May 01- May 03 which is the national holiday.

  3. Nathan says:

    What is the scenery like in mid April? Will there be a lot of flowers or the plant still brown from winter?

  4. Daniel says:

    Hello Nathan,

    Mid-April is a good time to view spring flowers like peach flowers. A big drop of temperature between day and night, so wear warmly in the early morning and evening
    18℃ at noon and 7℃ in the evening, just for your reference.

  5. yeni says:

    i’m planning to JZG on 21 / 22 march to go JiuZhaiGuo, what is the scenery ? it’s good time to go there,
    and can i go to huanglong ? how about the wheather ?

    (not to published my email )

    tks yeni

  6. Daniel says:

    Hello Yeni,

    March is the wakening period for Jiuzhaigou tourism. The temperature is about between 16℃ (day) and 4℃(night), still a bit chilly, wear warmy especially in the evening. Not much water in Huanglong. Maybe Huanglong is closed for tourist group during the March. People would visit Munigou Valley instead of Huanglong in March. It is not a good time in March to visit Jiuzhaigou compared to September and October when the snow-capped mountains melt, producing much water.

  7. Lc hon says:

    We plan to visit jiuzhaigou during Autumn, would like to see colourful leaves. So what would be the best time ? Beginning of Oct or Mid Oct ? How would be the temperature during autumn. thanks

  8. Daniel says:

    Hello Lc hon,

    Foliage Color Coverage in Jiuzhaigou:

    Class No.01 (Oct15 – 18): Foliage color ooverage 10%~35%,yellow color, a good time for viewing colorful leaves.

    Class No.02(Oct 18 – 22 ): Foliage color ooverage 35%~60%,yellow and orange, a very goog time for fall foliage.

    Class No.03(Oct 22- Nov.02): Foliage color ooverage 60%~95%,red and purple colors, the best time for leaf peeping.

    So Mid or the end of October is the best time for viewing colorful leaves.

    The temperature in October is averagely 10℃(night)and 23℃(day). I suggest you still need to bring weaters or even winter clothes like down jackets. The weather in Jiuzhaigou is changeable and often showers since Jiuzhaigou sits at the sea-level over 3000m.

  9. anog says:

    We’re planning to visit Jiuzhaigou at the end of july / early August, is it too crowed at that time? is there will be hordes of Chinese tourists ? Thanks.

  10. Daniel says:

    Hello Anog,

    Yes, july / early August there will be lots of domestic tourists due to the summer vacations for schools and colleges.

  11. Anita says:

    Hi we are planning a trip the first week of Jun. Will we be disappointed? Will there still be colors? What’s the temp like during that time?

  12. Daniel says:

    Hello Anita,

    Well, the first week of June is not a bad time to visit Jiuzhaigou. It is getting warmer and the water level of the lakes and the waterfalls return to the normal with the rain season coming, making the views of Jiuzhaigou very photogenic. It is getting greener though you have no chance to view the colorful leaves which you will see in autumn ( October ).

    June is a shoulder tourist season, so you can avoid the sea of people during the high season of July, August, September and October.

    The temperature ranges between 11°C (night) and 20°C (day), so you still need to bring a think jacket to beat the cold in the evening. Also don’t forget to bring your umbrella since it often showers in June, especially in the evening. In addition, sunblock is still needed during the daytime due to its high altitude.

  13. SK says:

    Hi, as the last week of Oct is the best time for leaf peeping, will be be very crowded at that time of the year?

  14. Daniel says:

    Hello Sk,

    Yes, it will be very crowded at that time of the year. But it is less crowded that National Day Holiday ( October 1 -7 ).

  15. yf says:


    i m planning visit jiu zhai gou from 1 nov to 5 nov and huilong from 6 to 8 nov, how is the weather there? is it autumn?


  16. Daniel says:

    Hello YF,

    yes,it is still in Autumn, a late autumn time. You still catch the last autumn hue of Jiuzhaigou. The temperature at the early Nov is about 16℃(day) and 8℃(night), a big temperature difference between day and night. Wear warmly ( winter jacket for the evening). Have a good time in Jiuzzhaigou!

  17. Mimi says:

    Hello Daniel,

    When is the best time to visit Jiuzhaigo and Chengdu where I don’t have to wear thick
    winter jacket?

  18. Daniel says:


    The best time to visit Jiuzhaigou is May through October.But you still need to be ready for a raincoat and warm clothes due to the high altitude and changeable weather in Jiuzhaigou.

  19. Chuong says:

    Hi Daniel.

    I’m planning to visit Jiuzhaigou on Aug 31 to Sep 2. Is it worth visiting that time? How about the weather. Sorry for asking you on that specific period but I have to do so for the best plan. Thanks in Advance

  20. Daniel says:

    Hello Chuong,

    It is not a bad idea to visit Jiuzhaigou on Aug 31 to Sep 2 when summer vacation is over and students are returning to School, reducing the tourist volume a bit. The weather is generaly comfortable, though a little bit muggy. Historically, Highest temperature around 28 and lowest around 17. The local weather is changeable. Don’t forget to bring your umbrella or raincoat. A thin sweater is needed for the evening and early morning. Have a good time in Jiuzhaigou.

  21. Sal says:

    1) Which is the best way to get to juizhai gou ? By air from Cheng du or by land ?
    2) my friend say they are constructing new roads n the traffic jam us very bad ?
    How can I avoid it ?
    I plan to visit from 6 sep

  22. Daniel says:

    Hello Sal,

    Basically, I prefer to take the early flight from Chengdu to Jiuzhaigou. Have no information on the road construction. Have a good time in Jiuzhaigou!

  23. Cel says:

    Hi Daniel,

    I have holidays from November 8th to 16th. Do you think it is still a good time to see Jiuzhaigou or there won’t be colorful leaves and it will be too cold.

    Moreover, what do you recommend to do in one week?

    Finally, do you think it is better to sleep in the park or outside (I think there are hotels inside and outside the park, right?)

    Thank you in advance,

  24. Daniel says:

    Hello Cel.

    Autumn leaves are gone. Mid-November is not the best time to visit Jiuzhaigou. But it is not a bad idea to visit Jiuzhaigou in Mid-November when you will see the beautiful water in Jiuzhaigou with bold branches of the trees reflected on the water. Personally I think one week is too long for Jiuzhaigou tour. Basically 2 nights in Jiuzhaigou is enough for a regular sightseeing and photos taking.

    As a rule and regulation, people are not allowed to stay overnight inside Jiuzhaogou Park

  25. Daniel says:

    Hello Cel,

    Just a follow-up to my previous reply.

    Entrance tickets ( April 01 – November 15): RMB 222 + RMB 90 ( shuttle bus inside the park)
    Entrance tickets ( November 15 – March 31) : RMB 80 + RMB 80 ( shuttle bus inside the park)

    So if you visit Jiuzhaigou on November 16, you are eligible for low season discounts.

    The biggest advantage of visiting Jiuzhaigou in low season is that you don’t have to run shoulder to shoulder with the hordes of tourist groups and enjoy a leisure travel in Jiuzhaigou.

    If you visit Jiuzhaigou for one week, you have to buy 7 entrance tickets ( one ticket for one day entrance).

  26. Tamar says:

    Hello Daniel,
    My daughter and I, (75 years old senior) are planning to visit Jiuzhaigou and Zhangjiajie the last week of May, 2015. Because of the high altitude of Jiuzhaigou and HuangLong, I would like to know if there is a way for me to purchase portable (recreational) travel oxygen canisters in these places in case I need it. Or are they available in the hotels for guests who are concerned with altitude sickness that might occur in these natural sites? Thank you.

  27. Daniel says:

    Hello Tamar,

    AS far as I know, there are portable oxygen canisters in hotels or shopping stores or drug stores in Huanglong and Jiuzhaigou. Most of the local drivers know where to purchase the canisters. Don’t worry about that. But I’m no sure where they are available in Zhangjiajie with an altitude of 1500 meters. Hope you have a good time in China!

  28. jess says:

    hi daniel,

    i would like to know if mid aug is ideal to visit jiuzaigou or it is considered rainy season? Or can you advise me if when is the period that will have lesser tourist visiting there?

  29. Daniel says:

    Hi Jess,

    Less tourist visiting often means “non-best time” for visiting. July and August are still in the school summer vacation season. So you will still find lots of tourists in Jiuzhaigou during August. Personally, I think the early September through the mid-September will be a good time for visiting Jiuzhaigou, good weather and the summer vocation is over.

  30. Peter says:

    Hi Daniel

    May I know what color are the leaf in mid-September? Is it normally rainy in September? If I visit during Monday to Friday (example 14-18 Sept), will the crowd be less compared to Saturdays and Sundays? Thanks.

  31. Daniel says:

    Hi Peter,

    Basically the leaves in Jiuzhaigou will turn red and yellow in the later half of October. So in mid-September, the dominating color of Jiuzhaigou is still green. Not much rain as in July and August. But you still need to bring an umbrella or raincoat or, rain-proof jacket as the weather in Jiuzhaigou is very changeable!

    It is a good choice to come to Jiuzhaigou in Mid-September after the summer vacation ( July and August ) and before Autum Moon Festival and October 1-7 National Holiday. Sure, weekday is less crowded than weekend. Have a good trip to Jiuzhaigou!

  32. Tricia says:

    Hi Daniel,

    I’m planning to visit JZG on 26 Oct 2015. Autumn leave still there?
    Do you know when HL will be closed for visiting this year?
    Should I go JZG first or HL if I intend to take a flight out to Chengdu.


  33. Daniel says:

    Hi Tricia,

    Yes, you will see the autumn leaves around 26 Oct, 2015. We haven’t received any notice relative to the closure of Huanglong. Normally it won’t be closed till December. There is also a possibility that Huanglong will be open for the whole winter this year.

    You may first visit Huanglong and go on to Jiuzhai on the same day. After Jouzhaigou, get up early and go to Jiuzhai-Huanglong Airport.

    Have a good time in Jiuzhai and Huanglong!

  34. lina jasin says:

    Hi Daniel,
    I have been to JJG last April, I like to go again on December, but I will bring my mom, she’s 83 year old, but in good condition. Last year i brought her to Huangshan in December too ( winter time )
    My question is, how cold it would be in JJG in winter, its same as Huangshan -5 or worse?? Consider of the altitude at JJG is not the same. Also like to make sure it’s safe to travel on winter ?
    Many thanks

  35. Daniel says:

    Hi lina Jasin,

    1. Jiuzhaigou’s Temperature in December: 0℃ daytime: -10 ℃ night
    2. It is safe to travel in Jiuzhaigou in winter.
    3. Pay attendtion to the high altitude illness.
    4. If your mom has heart illness or high blood pressure, we don’t suggest she come visi Jiuzhaigou.

    Have a good time in Jiuzhaigou!

  36. chang says:

    whats the temperature in JZG on the 18 Oct 2015 week? is winter wear required?

  37. Daniel says:

    Hi Chang,

    It is better to take your wintter clothes winter clothes since the weather on high altitude is quite changeable. Have a good time!

  38. Emilie says:


    I would like to go to the Jiuzhaigou around mid December. However i’m not sure the weather will be very good and allow me to take the most advantage of the park. I also have an opportunity to go to Jiuzhaigou in spring time, would that be a better season to enjoy the nature?

    Thank you!

  39. Daniel says:

    Hi Emilie,

    I think spring will be a better season than winter to visit Jiuzhaigou.

  40. Jason says:

    Hi Daniel,

    I’m thinking about visitting Jiuzhaigou around mid Feb. Would it be possible to get some beautiful scenery of Jiuzhaigou Valley in the winter?. Also I would like know that would it be possible to visit Huanglong in Feb?

    Thank You

  41. Daniel says:

    Hi Jason,

    The scenes of Jiuzhaigou in winter are not as beautiful as in spring or autumn. But if snowing, Jiuzhaigou will be blanketed in the white world with beautiful views. I have just checked their official website, you still can visit Huanglong in Feb. Have a good time!

  42. Marian Ching says:

    We are planning to have a vacation in JZG this march 22 to march 27 ,2016, and we will bring with us
    our mother 😯 years old. what is the weather and what we can see during this date. Hoping for your advice
    Thank you in advance.

  43. Daniel says:

    Hi Marian Ching,

    Late March in Jiuzhaigou is still quite chilly, a big temperature difference between day and night, you still need to wear a winter jacket in the evening. Average temperature: 17 ℃(day ) and 7℃ (night). It may rain during the day, bringing your rain jacket. Late March is not the best season to visit Jiuzhaigou, a bit cold and the trees are not very much green. The advantage is that you can have discounts for entrance fees and less crowded in the scenic area. After all, it is not bad to visit Jiuzhaigou in late March.

  44. Petra says:

    I will visit Jiuzhaigou in few days time and struggle to find the information about which parts of the park are closed for winter (because I know some are).
    Any idea? Thank you!

  45. Beijing Tour says:

    Hi Petra,

    Basically the park is open all year around. But each winter some parts of the primeval forests and the wooden walkways will be closed to the public for winterization. It is hard to know the exact parts of being closed even though we have browsed their official website.

    Have a good time in Jiuzhaigou!

    Check out :

    Daniel Li

  46. Apple says:

    Hi il be going JZG on 11th april on a tour package with my parents both at 65 yrs old. Do they need to use portable oxygen canisters because of its high altitude? Is it ok if they dont use it? My dad has high blood pressure, does he have to note special note of any medication? As we will be staying for 2nights @ JZG. What will be the scenic view like & its temperature? Any snow view, waterfall etc to be seen? What do we have to wear & will there be frequent rainfall?

  47. Beijing Tour says:

    Hi Apple,

    1. As for the use of the portable oxygen canisters and the special note of any medication, it is better to turn to a doctor for more professional advice.
    Basically, better preparation in advance ( oxygen canister and high altitude medicine is ) is is good for your parents.

    2. Jiuzhaigou Weather in Mid April
    1) Approx. 22 ℃ (day ) and 7 ℃ (night) ( based on last year’s weather report)
    2) Some rain and you should take waterproof. Waterfall is so so.
    3) Sharp temperature different between day and night, you should be ready for warm clothes

    3. Jiuzhaigou scenery in mid-April
    April is a dry season, not the best season in a year. You may still see the snow capped mountain. A bit early for the spring flowers. It is turning green.

    It is okey to travel Jiuzhaigou in April, unlike high tourist season packed with hordes of domestic tourists.

    Have a good time in Jiuzhaigou!

  48. Alecc says:


    I will be visiting Jiu Zhai gou are 21 to 23 step. May I know If l will get any chance to see yellow foliage ?


  49. Beijing Tour says:

    Hi Alecc,

    It is better to view the autumn leaves in Mid-October.

  50. Fie says:

    Dear Daniel.

    We (2 people) will go to Jiuzhaigou from approx 7th of August to 10th of August.
    Do you by any chance have a list of cheap hostels in the village near the main gate to the park?
    I would like to book in advance to make sure we can get accommodation.
    Thanks a lot for your help.
    Best regards


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