Yángjiājiè

Zhangjiajie

Located on the backside of the park is this unexpectedly fun hike, which descends into a valley (beneath a cable car) before climbing back up a series of narrow crevices to reach an old Tujia courtyard home (乌龙寨, Wūlóng Zhài). From here is the best part – finish with a nervy via ferrata–like ascent to reach the summit of your very own spire (天波府, Tiānbō Fǔ, Tianbo Mansion), where magnificent panoramas await. Don't miss the trail that circles the spire just beneath the summit. Figure 1½ to two hours.

The cable car (¥76) descends to the valley floor and links to the Forest Park entrance via bus (30 minutes), but it's a roundabout way to enter or exit.