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Zhangjiajie ( ) is a prefecture-level city in the northwestern part of Hunanmarker province in Chinamarker. It comprises the districts of Yongding (永定), Cili (慈利) and Sangzhi (桑植) counties. Within it is located Wulingyuan Scenic Areamarker which was designated a UNESCOmarker World Heritage Site in 1992. The estimated population of Zhangjiajie, as of 2002, is 1,568,200.


The city itself used to be named Dayong (大庸), and has a recorded history dating back to 221BC.

Origin of the name

The new name of Zhangjiajie City was adopted in 1994, after the National Forest Park in the Wulingyuan Scenic Areamarker (武陵源) in order to give it more prominence and after this site had been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1992. The National Forest Park had been given the name of Zhangjiajie after the name of a small village located within its bounds, and now a popular tourist attraction within the park. The three-character name (张家界) can be interpreted as follows: "Zhang" (张) is a common surname in China; "jia" (家) can be translated as "family"; and "jie" (界) can be translated as "homeland", giving the completed translation of "Zhang family homeland." It has been reported that at least one tourist guide has said that the name may have been chosen to convey the idea or impression of "Open the family door to welcome the world" (门引进世), but this is not the locally-accepted and directly translated meaning of the name.

Local Economy

The prefecture is mainly a tourist area. Although it used to be Korean influenced due to tourism and investment, increasingly, the tourists now come from all over China and Asian countries.

Local Tourist Attractions

The Wulinyuan Scenic and Historic Interest Area comprises the Zhangjiajie National Forest Parkmarker, the Tianzishan (天子山) mountain ranges, BaoFengHu (宝峰湖) and the Suoxi Valley (索溪峪), and is a very popular filming and tourist destination.

Also in the Zhangjiajie area, Huanglongdong (黄龙洞) and Longwangdong (龙王洞) are caves known for many natural rock formations (much like Wulingyuan) and its underground cataract.


The Zhangjiajie Airport services scheduled service to major airports in China.

External links

  • - Zhangjiajie city government Web site
  • - Zhangjiajie Tourism Encyclopedia

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