Zhangjiajie Tianmen Mountain head
Home Zhangjiajie Travel Guide Zhangjiajie Attractions Tianmen Mountain – the Stairway to Heaven’s Gate and Thrilling Glass Skywalk

Tianmen Mountain – the Stairway to Heaven’s Gate and Thrilling Glass Skywalk

Zhangjiajie Tianmen mountain, known as Yunmeng mountain or Songliang mountain in ancient times, is shrouded in myths and legends. With the 1518.6 meters high of the main peak, it is the highest mountain in Yongding district of Zhangjiajie, Hunan Province.

Honored as “the soul of Zhangjiajie” and “the first sacred mountain in western Hunan”, Tianmen Mountain has been inspiring nature lovers and adventure seekers. Every year, this well-known World Geopark and national forest park attract a great number of visitors home and abroad, including many extreme sports enthusiasts for wingsuit flying and stunt flying.

If you are now planning a trip to Zhangjiajie, it is time to experience the magic of Tianmen Mountain.

Fast Facts

  • In Chinese:天门山
  • Location:8 kilometers away from southern suburbs of Zhangjiajie, Hunan, China
  • Altitude: 6 meters
  • Climate:subtropical monsoon climate
  • Area: 96 km²
  • Opening hours: 07:00-16:00
  • Ticket price:RMB 258 (cable car and shuttle bus included)
  • Time needed: 0.5 – 1 day
  • Highlights: walking up the 999 steps to get to Tianmen Cave; Guigu Plank Road & glass skywalk; world’s longest cable car; the 99-Bend Road
  • Suitable for: nature lovers, active families and couples, outdoor adventure enthusiasts.
Zhangjiajie Tianmen Mountain
Skyway of Tianmen Mountain

What to See and Do on Tianmen Mountain

Extraordinary Transportation on Tianmen Mountain

The tourism traffic facilities of Tianmen Mountain National Park such as Tianmen cable car, the 99-Bend Road, Tianmen Mountain escalator and glass skywalk all have a great reputation in the world. The plane passes through Tianmen Cave, Wing Outfit Flying World Championship and people climb over the Tianmen Cave by hand all make the Tianmen Mountain more famous and attractive for visitors.

Recommend Zhangjiajia Tianmen Mountain tours:

Tianmen Mountain cable car

The longest mountain tourism cable car in the world, Tianmen Mountain cable car connects the city of Zhangjiajie tothe peak of Tianmen mountain. The length of it is 7,455 meters and the horizontal elevation difference is 1,279 meters.

As the world’s first aerial mobile viewing gallery, visitors can not only enjoy the city scenery, but also rural scenery and magnificent natural landscapes. The single journey takes about 35 minutes, and it is regarded as one of the four wonders of Tianmen Mountain.

Two-seats Open Chairlift for Sightseeing

Two-seats Open Chairlift starts from the Yunmengxian Peak, the main peak of Tianmen Mountain, and ends at Cherry Bay Square in front of Tianmen Mountain Temple. The total length is 800 metres, with a one-way running time of about 10 minutes and a capacity of 600 people per hour.

The 99-Bend Road

Located in the deep valley in the middle of Tianmen mountain National Park, the 99-Bend Road winds in the mountains and cliffs, and is the only highway to Tianmen Cave. With a total length of 10.77 kilometers and an elevation drop of nearly 1,100 meters, the 99 bends that are almost 180° rotation looks like a giant dragon circling around the mountains.

The construction of it began in 1998 and it was fully completed in 2005,costing more than 100 million yuan due to the unique geology and climate, and it is famous for its amazing and great and honored as “the first wonder of highway in the world”.

Recommend Zhangjiajia highlights tour:

Zhangjiajie Glass Bridge
Zhangjiajie Glass Bridge

Tianmen Mountain Glass Skywalks

There are there glass skywalks on the top of Tianmen Mountain that thrilling seekers should not miss. The western glass skywalk is 60 meters in length and 1.6 meters in width, which is built on the cliff at 1,430 meters high above sea level. And the surface is made of high-strength tempered glass, so it is absolutely safe. Walking on it, people may feel like floating on the sky. For visitors who are brave and adventurous enough, it is must-go experience.

But if you are acrophobic, there is also a stone path for you to hike. And the eastern glass skywalk, located on the cliff wall, is 150 meters long and 1.8 meters wide. When you walk on it, you can have a panoramic view of Tianman Cave.

In 2016, the “Coiled Dragon Cliff Glass Walkway” (盘龙崖玻璃栈道), the third glass skywalk in Tianmen Mountain Scenic Area opened to the public. The glass walkway is 100 meters long and 1.6 meters wide, and is named after the walkway that stands overlooking the 99-bend Road of Tianmen Mountain.

All three glass skywalk offers visitors unique ways to enjoy the stunning mountainous landscapes of Tianmen.

Tianmen cave – Leading the Way to Heavens Gate

Tianmen cave is a legendary representative of the highest natural cave through the mountain in the world. Hanging over an elevation of more than 1300 meters, Tianmen cave is 131.5 meters high, 57 meters wide and 60 meters deep. And it is a famous scenic spot and highlight in Tianmen mountain. Through the ages, whether it is the emperor or the ordinary people regard it as a sacred place for praying.

If you want to visit it, climbing stairs called heaven-reaching ladder or stairway to heaven’s door by foot is the only way. There are 999 stairs in all, symbolizing the supremacy and permanence of heaven.

However, if you want to save time and energy, taking the Tianmen Mountain escalator that runs through the Mountain is the best way. The elevator running through the mountain is the first escalator installed in the mountain tunnel in the world. Running inside it all the way from the bottom to the top of the mountain, the total length of escalator is 897 meters with 12 sections.

Tianmen Mountain Heaven's Gate
Tianmen Cave

Nature Wonders to Explore

Covered by cloud forest almost all year around, Tianmen Mountain has unique and breath-taking scenery of countless change of the sea of clouds. There are other wonders such as the “holy light of the Buddha of Tianmen”, “sunglow of Tianmen”, mirage and so on. With many charming and magnificent natural landscape and profound history, it is also known as the “Hanging primitive garden”.

Ancient Sites on Tianmen Mountain

Zhangjiajie Tianmen mountain tourist area covers an area of 96 square kilometers and the 2 square kilometers of the peak area, which is a typical karst landform with steep and magnificent cliffs and mountains. The primeval secondary forest is well-preserved, and the plant resources are abundant.

Surprisingly, Tianmen mountain has a profound cultural heritage. There existrelics of Patron of agriculture, Chisongzi and Guiguzi as well as a large number of poems and legends about Tianmen mountain. And since the Tang dynasty, Tianmen mountain temple has strong incense with precious Shakyamuni relics.

Popular Zhangjiajie & Fenghuang Ancient Town Tours

Tianmen Fox Fairy Show

The plot is derived from the folk mythological story ‘Liu Hai Chopping Woodcutter’, which is a household name in Hunan. The show draws on the world’s rich musical culture and artistic expression, combines local folk songs and dances of Hunan’s Tujia ethnic minorities, and employs modern high-tech stage special effects technology.

Show time: 20:15-21:50 every evening from March to December

Stunt Flight and Wingsuit Flying on Tianmen Mountain

In 1999, the flyover of Tianmen Cave by stunt pilots from nine countries was the beginning of the flying aerobatics show at Tianmen Mountain in Zhangjiajie. And then, with the famous American wingsuit flying master Jeb Corliss flying over Tianmen Mountain in 2011, more and more extreme sports enthusiasts challenged to fly at Tianmen Mountain in Zhangjiajie.

How to Buy Entrance Tickets to Tianmen Mountain National Park

Prices of tickets:

Admission Fee CNY 235

Notes: The ticket includes transportation fares inside the scenic area. (transportation: shuttle bus, single-way and the upper escalator from Tiammen Cave to the mountaintop.)

Opening time: 07:00-16:00

  • Prices of other charge in the scenic area:
Lower escalator to Tianmen Cave CNY 32 (single way)
Shoe cover at glass skywalk CNY 5
Peak forest cable car on the top of the mountain CNY 25

How to Visit Tianmen Mountain?

There are three tour routes for visitors to choose from:

Route A:

  • Take the cable car at the Down Station of cable way to the mountaintop
  • Visitthe “Hanging Garden”
  • Take the escalator to Tianmen Cave
  • Take the tourist bus to the mountain gate
  • Take the shuttle bus back to the Down Station of cable way

Route B:

  • Take the shuttle bus at the Down Station of cable way to mountain gate
  • Take tourist bus to Tianmen Cave
  • Take the escalator to the mountaintop
  • Visitthe “Hanging Garden”
  • Take the cable car back to Down Station of cable way

Suggested Tianmen Mountain Travel Route in Winter:

  • Take the cable car at the Down Station to the mountaintop
  • Visitthe “Hanging Garden”
  • Take the cable car back to Down Station of cable way

Please note: While most attractions in Tianmen Mountain National Park are open in winter, Tianmen Cave may be closed during the off-season, and the glass walkway may be closed during heavy snowfall.

Tianmen Mountain
Tianmen Mountain in Winter

When is the Best time to Visit Tianemen Mountain?

With a mid-subtropical humid monsoon climate, Zhangjiajie Tianmen Mountain National Park offers beautiful mountainous views all year round, thus all the four seasons are suitable for sightseeing. But the best time to visit is April and October, because natural scenery is at its most beautiful in these two months. Plus the weather is mild and pleasant.

Tips: Visitors had better avoid the official holiday in China, because many Chinese citizens choose to travel on official holidays to ease the pressure of their work. As a result, many Chinese tourist attractions are overcrowded and traffic jams are common. Therefore, traveling to Zhangjiajie and Tianmen Mountain at this time will bring tourists a less pleasant travel experience.

Official Holidays in China

Chinese New Year Around January or February
Winter vacation January-February
Labor Day May1st -3rd
Summer vacation(for students) July-August31st
Mid-Autumn Festival Around mid-September
National Day October 1st-7th

How to get to Tianmen Mountain?

To travel to Tianmen Mountain from Hong Kong, Beijing, Guilin, Xian, Shanghai, Chengdu, Jiuzhaigou, Huangshan, and other popular tourist destinations in China, you can take a flight or train to get to Zhangjiajie first. Then you can choose one of the following ways to reach Tianmen Mountain Scenic Area.

From the downtown Zhangjiajie

Visitors can take Bus No.1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10 or 102 and get off at Tianmen Mountain Cable Car Station.

From the the Zhangjiajie Hehua International Airport

Visitors can take Bus No.4, 5 or 6 and get off at Tianmen Mountain Cable Car Station.

From Zhangjiajie Railway Station

Visitors can also take Bus No.5 or 6 and get off at Tianmen Mountain Cable Car Station, which just takes about 5 minutes.

Recommended China tours to Zhangjiajie

Nearby Attractions

  • Zhangjiajie National Forest Park: It is about 40km away from Tianmen Mountain. Covering an area of 130 square kilometres, it is China’s first national forest park. Its main highlights include Avatar Halleluyah Mountain, Tianzi Mountain, Bailong Elevator, Yellow Stone Village, Golden Whip Creek, Yuanjiajie and so on.
  • Zhangjiajie Grand Canyon: Another must-visit place in Zhangjiajie, Hunan, it offers some of the best trails for hiking, as well as the world’s longest glass bridge. It is about 60km away from Tianmen Mountain.
  • Baofeng Lake: It is a part of Wulingyuan Scenic and Historic Interest Area, a World Natural Heritage and World Geopark. Don’t miss the cruise trip on the lake to appreciate picturesque landscape.
  • Yellow Stone Cave: It is one of the most beautiful karst caves in China.

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