Sanchahe covers 1.5 million hectares of protected land and is divided into two parts that are connected by cable car facilities. If you want to get an overview of the extent of the Reserve and observe some animals the cable car ride is the best way to do it. There are a variety of tours available for visitors to the Reserve. The most popular tour is a trip to Aini, Dail and Bulang Villages. These villages are traditional Chinese villages where people survive from the means around them.
If you want to make the most of your time in Sanchahe the recommended form of exploration is a trek across the area. Usually trekking excursions last up to six hours. With a little bit of extra cash you can rent a treetop bungalow which will allow you to watch elephants and enjoy the sunrise through the tree tops.
Sanchahe is located in Xishuangbanna and the rainforest is home to around 439 species of birds, 359 species of terrestrial vertebrates, 118 species of amphibians and over 60 different species of snakes. Among the list of endangered animals are white-breast and black wood-peckers, elephants, Bengal tigers and leopards. The best way to enjoy your time in Sanchahe is to rent out the castle-like observation homes near the water pool. The water pool attracts herds of elephants each day and from the luxury of the home you can watch them interact with each other and bathe in the water. The elephants you encounter at the reserve are Asian elephants; they are much smaller in size compared with the African variety. They thrive on wild bananas, corn and bamboo leaves. Elephants have been the main attraction for tourists since the forest area contains around 300 elephants; it is even named the ‘Kingdom of Elephants’ by locals.
It is important to note that exploring the forest on your own is not recommended. The forest is particularly hard to trek in during the rainy season and you need to have a guide with you to help you find your way. If you are looking for accommodation close to the reserve a hotel in Yunnan is your best bet. Anantara Xishuangbanna Resort & Spa offers a number of top notch luxury rooms which are amongst the luxuries of this hotel Yunnan has to offer.
Nigel Walters is a travel writer, who writes under the pen name, Free Spirit. His content is based on the myriad of experiences and indulgences that the world has to offer travellers across all walks of life.