Maerkang

Maerkang Travel Guide, Sichuan

Category:

Overview

Ma'erkang is the county seat of Aba Autonomous Prefecture, featuring representative Tibetan architectures and life. It's an important trading and traffic center along the 318 National highway connecting the east and west China.

From Maerkang, you can go north to Hongyuan,Zoige, Aba, west to Sertar, Luhuo, or descend south to Danba and Kangding.

Highlights

Tibetan Mansion / Tibetan village / Stone watchtower

Climate and Best Time to go


It belongs to the continental monsoon climate, with distinct dry and rainy season, blurry four seasons, no summer, enough sunlight, obvious difference in temperature, and windy weather during dry season. The average temperature is 8~9ºC with 753mm rainfall per year and above 1500 hours' sunlight.

Autumn (late Sept. to early Nov.) is the best season, when the valley is decorated by colorful foliages

How long? --
1 ~

Zhuokeji Tibetan Mansion,Sichuan
Zhuokeji Tibetan Mansion,Sichuan
Dining room, Zhuokeji Tibetan Mansion,Sichuan
Xisuo Tibetan Village,Zhuokeji
2 days

Getting there & away
There are early morning buses from Chengdu / Songpan / Danba / Zoige /Hongyuan to Maerkang, running daily except from Songpan to Maerkang (7:10am / Y81 / 9hrs / runevery 2 days )

* Maerkang bus station is just beside the road and halfway between down town and Zhuokeji.

For moving on,
Southeast: Chengdu-bound bus (7:00am & 9:20am)  make stops at Miyaluo/ Taoping Qiang Village / Chengdu.
North: Zoige-bound buses pass by Hongyuan / Tangke before arriving Zoige.
Upright south: Danba / Kangding

* check the bus schedule and buy ticket at arrival.

Getting around
Taxi is cheap and convenient to any of the sights around [Y8~Y35]

Sleeping

Sun Hotel 太阳宾馆: next to the Maerkang Bus station,Y40 / twin room,hot water available at 4~5pm thanks to the solar energy.

Zoige Red-Star Hotel: Triple room without shower, Y15/head

Hongyuan Guesthouse: Triple room without shower, Y10/head

Zhuokeji Guesthouse No1 Poppa's Family: Y20/head

Maerkang Folk Costume Factory Rest House: Y40/twin with attached bathroom

Also, facing the Zhuokeji Tibetan mansion, the Tibetan villagers' home provide accommodation of  Y60/head/day, incl. bed and 3 meals. If you are from North or Southeast, bus will pass by Zhuokeji, you can get off at the Zhuokeji Bridge 5 minutes ahead of the destination.

Or, take a taxi to down town from the bus station (around Y12) where you can have a whole bunch of choices.

Eating
Down town, many good restaurants along the road serve tasty and cheap dishes

Attractions/Activities

  • Zhuokeji /卓克基 – a representative Tibetan village located on the roadside 7km east of Maerkang, where all buses from north & southeast to Maerkang pass by. Just get off at the Zhuokeji Bridge. Or, you can get there from Maerkang down town by taxi for around Y18 one way, or by minibus for Y3.


    • Admire the Grand Zhuokeji Tibetan Mansion /卓克基司官寨, which is composed by a fieldstone 5F Tibetan house and a stone fortification uilt almost one hundred years ago. Chairman Mao Zedong and Primiere Zhou Enlai stayed there once in 1935 during the famous long march. The house was under restoration in 2003. It's claimed to be an oriental architecture wonder, a witness of the traditional Tibetan Official System and a historic congress location of the Long March.(admission fee Y60).

    • Wander in the stone-constructed Tibetan village Xisuominju [西索民居] in Zhuokeji, just facing the Tibetan Mansion.

  • Songgang Watchtowers - The 4 stone watchtowers are located in Songgang countryside,16km west of Maerkang. 2 of them are beside Zhibo village while the other 2 are erecting on the slope beside the river. The chambers in ZhiBo village are longhouse which are established in the middle period of Qing dynasty. They are 50 metres apart and built by the block and mud and the wooden stairs are set up in it. The internal diameter of the south chamber is 8m with 0.95 wall thickness, 29m height and 7 layers. The north is 8.5m with 24.7m height and 6 layers. It is said that there is an underground connecting with the river when opening the door of the 2nd floor. 

    Getting there: Maerkang to Songgang: Y30 / taxi,  Y3 / minibus. Songgang to Zhuokeji: Y40/taxi.

    Admission fee: Y60

  • Suomo River valley /梭磨河谷 - trekking along the valley to enjoy the tranquility, beauty and fresh air.

Tips & Reminders
Bargain the entrance fee,possible to cut 50% off

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