Home>>>City Guide>>>>Attraction>>>>Chengdu

The Dujiangyan Irrigation System

Mount Qingcheng and the Dujiangyan Irrigation System are two state-level scenic attractions in China. Both are located west of Chengdu, the capital city of Sichuan Province. Mount Qingcheng, known as the fifth among the most famous Taoist mountains of China, is one of the places where Taoism came into being. With the snow-covered Mingshan Mountain in the background and the Chuanxi Plain in front, the evergreen Mount Qingcheng covers an area of over 120 kilometers. Altogether it has 36 peaks covered with thick forests of trees and bamboo, 72 caves and 108 scenic spots. It gets its name from the way the peaks resemble the structure of a city wall. The name Qingcheng means green city. Damian Mountain is its main peak and the Master's Cave (Tianshitong) serves as its pivot. The mountain is well known for its serene scenery that contains halls and temples shaded by forests and enhanced by interesting legends and anecdotes.

   Dujiangyan Irrigation System lies on the Minjiang River in the northwest of Dujiangyan City Sichuan China. It was built over 2,200 years ago around 250 B.C. under the direction of LiBing, the governor of the Shu Prefecture of the Qin State.
    The Minjiang River running across the vast Chengdu Plain used to do harm to the people down the river in the ancient times. After making careful survey on the spot Li Bing had a channel cut through Mount Yulei in the west of the city, thus a man-made river came into existence. In the middle of the Minjiang River, a dyke was built to divide the river into two parts: the inner river and the outer river. In order to control flood and charge silt, two spillways were built at the end of water-dividing dyke. Since then there has been a gravity irrigation system which makes the Chengdu Plain a "Land of Abundance" with a bumper harvest every year in spite of any drought or flood

The Dujiangyan Irrigation System is a pearl in the water works construction of ancient China. Built over 2,200 years ago, it still provides benefits for the people. The irrigation system was erected on the Minjiang River at the foot of Yulei   Mountain, northwest of Dujiangyan City in Sichuan Province. Here the Minjiang River, after being joined by many tributaries in its upper reaches, runs toward the Chengdu Plain. As the Yulei Mountain originally blocked the river so that water could not flow eastward, the plain had no access to river irrigation and agricultural development in the region was therefore seriously affected. Li Bing, governor of Shu Prefecture during the Warring States period (475-221 BC), made a careful survey of the region and then had a channel cut through Yulei Mountain. He put a dyke in the middle of the Minjiang River to divide it into two parts. This happened about  250 BC. He also ordered the local people to open channels and canals on the plain so as to divert the river for irrigation purposes. This finally turned the agricultural potential of the plain into a land of abundance.

The ancient Dujiangyan Irrigation System is unique and a scientific marvel. It provides the vital passage that joins mountain and plain. The main system consists of three parts: a fish-mouth-like water-dividing dyke, two spillways for discharging flood waters and silt, and a channel cut through Yulei Mountain as a water inlet. These three parts interact and depend on one another, constituting a carefully designed and reasonably arranged water diversion hub that contributes to irrigation, flood control, and shipping.

  The Dujiangyan Region has a beautiful landscape and many cultural relics and historical sites, including the Fulong Temple, Erwang Temple, and the trail bridge. All of these, plus moving legends have exerted a great attraction for both domestic and overseas tourists

The tourist site of Mount Qingcheng and the Dujiangyan Irrigation System was listed by the United Nations Heritage Commission as one of the World's Cultural Heritage on November 29, 2000.


    

The Fulong Temple (Fulong Guan) was erected in A.D.168 to commemorate the taming of the river. Fulong Temple locates in Lidui Park overlooking the split between the inner and outer flows of the Min River. Also, Li Bing's genius is again celebrated at the Two Kings Temple (Erwang Miao) near the dyke. The "two kings", of course, are Li Bing and his son, Er Lang. Two Kings Temple can be found in the western section of Yulei Park overlooking the dyke. There are cable cars that run between Lidui Park and Two Kings Temple in Yulei Park. The relatively high fares of RMB25 per ride keep the cable car's passengers to a reasonable number. The Two Kings Temple: It is a temple commemorating Li Bing and his son.With a silk map in hands, Li Bing is fixing his eyes on the map as if the water-regulated project has been in his mind. With the tool in his hands, the statue of his son in the posterior hall is heroic as if he is going to cleave the mountain and build the weir. The experience and discourse on water regulation chiseled in the temple is the ancient Chinese people's scientific summary on conquering nature, and is of great importance to the construct of water control.

Anlan Bridge: It is 500m long and bestrides the inner and the outer rivers. The Anlan rope bridge is one of the famous bridgeworks in ancient China. Made of local material, the bridge is refinement in structure. Taking wood as pockets and bamboo as hawsers, the bridge, covered with board, is hung over the river. It is very interesting for visitors to step on the bridge and have a view of the river, which seems as if a boat is flying through the fierce billows. Fulongguan Temple: With narrow river and strategic topography, this spot guards the throat of the Neijiang River, and therefore is called "the mouth of Aquarius". In 1974, the stone statue of Li Bing was unearthed here and now is installed in the middle of the main hall. The statue carved in 168 during the East Han dynasty is 2.9 meters in height and 4.5 tons in weight with a simple figure and graceful manner. It is considered as a very costful relic of stone carving. An iron"Flying Drago''of Tang dynasty is also displayed in the temple. There are eight lifelike flying dragons with vivid different expression emerging in the clouds. The quadripod weighing more than 500 kilograms is a rare ancient treasure.

Admission Fee: CNY 90
Opening Hours: 09:00 to 17:50
Recommended Time for a Visit: One and a half hours
Bus Route: There are direct buses at the railway station

Popular Attractions In  Chengdu                       More

Qingcheng Mountain


 
Emei Mountain


Daocheng scenic spot


 Sanxingdui(Three-Star Piles) Museum