Yangtze River Guide

Written by Sally Guo Updated Oct. 24, 2023

The Yangtze River is the longest river in Asia, flowing from the Tibetan Hivcghlands right across China into the East Chinese sea. It's 6300 km (3915 miles) and is ice-free all year. Its official name in China is Changjiang (simplified Chinese: 长江). It is also called the Yangtze River (simplified Chinese: 扬子江)and this name is mostly used in western countries.

Five of China's largest cities (Shanghai, Wuhan, Chongqing, Chengdu, and Nanjing) are located in the reaches of the river and the 1.8 million square km Yangtze River basin is home to 1/3 of Chinas population (400 million).

The Yangtze River is rich in history and culture. The stories of the Three Kingdoms Period and Bashu culture and Jingchu culture are interesting and mysterious.

The Yangtze’s gorges are highlights on the river’s course. Tiger Leaping Gorge, on the Upper Yangtze, is the deepest gorge in the world, with mountains towering 4,000 m (13,000 ft) above it and steep 2,000 m (6,600 ft) cliffs at its sides. The Three Gorges (Qutang Gorge, Wu Gorge, and Xiling Gorge) and the Lesser Three Gorges on the Yangtze’s middle reaches are awesomely beautiful, with relaxing cruises and pretty side gorges to be explored.

Yangtze River

Cruising on the Yangtze River is very popular for both Chinese and foreign tourists. Most cruises run between Chongqing and Yichang. Popular cruise ships are Victoria Jenna and Century Glory.

Yangtze River Map
Yangtze River Map

Best time to vist Yangtze River

The climate at the Yangtze River is as diverse as the river is long. The best time to take the Yangtze Cruise is in Spring and Autumn. That means April, May, September, and October when the weather is cool and comfortable. These four months are often called high seasons. The best time in terms of price is in winter however the weather must be considered.

The Yangtze River is of major economic importance. The largest hydroelectric power station in the world, the Three Gorges Dam is on the river.

The volume of transportation on the Yangtze River is higher than the total transportation of all other rivers in China together.

The agricultural areas along the river produce nearly half of the countries total crop production, while most of the industrial hotspots are located here.

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