Dehang Miao Village

a gorgeous valley
Dehang Miao Village

Dehang, in Hmong (Miao language) is a "beautiful canyon". This provincial-level scenic spot is located in the western suburb of Jishou City, the capital of Xiangxi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture, 24 kilometers away from Jishou City. Dehang Tourist Area is centered on Aizhai Village, with its east end to Tangle Cave, west end to Dalong Cave, south end to Wushan and Liantai Mountains and north end to Liusha Waterfall (the highest drop gauze-like waterfall and waterfall group in the country) and Xiaolong Cave. The total area covers about 190 square km. This magical land is a jewel in nature’s crown. It is a self-contained scenic area which has streams, canyons, waterfalls, peaks, and even ancient flora and fauna.

Quick Facts
  • Chinese Name: 德夯苗寨 Déhāng miáozhài
  • Duration: 1 day
  • Entrance fee: RMB 100
  • Opening hours: 9:00 AM-17:30
  • Address: Jishou City, Xiangxi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture, Hunan Province, China
  • Best time to visit: all year round.
  • How to get there: take the tourist coach to Deyi Miao Village next to Jishou Railway Station. The fare is RMB 4 and the journey is about 40 minutes.

Highlights of Dehang Village

Strolling through Dehang Miao Village, you can see that the water wheel, the water powered roller, the ancient ferry, the small boat and the stilt houses are all part of an idyllic poetic picture. The Jiulong River meanders through the village surrounded by precipitous mountains. Among the verdant mountains and green waters, travelers can see stilt houses with grey tiles and stone bases, delicate stone arch bridges, and barefoot Miao laundry ladies in red. The ancient stone mills and the water wheel, both driven by the water, are working tirelessly in the idyllic time and space.

1. Sima Peak

Sima Peak (peaks look like four running horses) is 300 meters above the hills east of Dehang Miao Village. The momentum of four galloping horses is just unstoppable. Whenever it is foggy in the canyon, the peaks look even more entangled. According to legend, the horses used to pull King Miao's wagon when he was paying a visit to his land.

three sisters peaksThree Sisters Peaks

2. Three Sisters Peaks – Avalokitesvara Cave

Right on the mountain behind Xin (New) Zhai, there are three gray-white pinnacles, known as the "Three Sisters". Each peak is more than 200 meters high. The shapes resemble three young ladies wearing Miao skirts. It seems that they are standing on the mountain ridge contemplating. According to legend, there were three Miao ladies standing on the mountain singing Miao love songs with their boyfriends for three days and three nights right here. Unfortunately, seven suns appeared in the sky, burning the land, drying the streams and taking their lives. And a stone-like hole cracked open behind the three sisters, looking like the Avalokitesvara. So people call it Guanyin (Avalokitesvara) Cave. Whenever the clouds drift near the cave door, the Guanyin Cave is more mysterious. It looks as if Avalokitesvara is coming out of the hole holding a magic jade bottle.

3. Jielong (welcoming the Chinese dragon) Bridge

There is a bridge in Deyi Village, which is simple and elegant. The semi-circular stone arch bridge is paved at both ends with bluestone slabs, and connects Miao Village on both banks of Hang Xia (canyon) Stream. The stream under the bridge is clear and happy, and it runs all the year round. On each side of the stream, there is a pier made of stone. It is the place where young ladies can do the washing. Jielong Bridge is a natural place for Miao people to carry out the activity of welcoming the dragon.

dehang villageDehang Village

4. Dehang Village

Located in the depths of the canyon, is a village with more than 80 Miao. People live closely together in the quiet village in wooden dwellings with gray tiles, interspersed with black stone pavements, stone bridges and stone walls. The village is surrounded by steep mountains and cliffs. Here at the center of the scenic area the Hangxia, Jiulong and Yuquan Brooks meet like three knotted ribbons. People can follow the 15,000-meter-long stone pavement to anywhere in the village. It is also an excellent viewing platform, offering a pleasing panorama whichever way you turn. Xiangyi (a couple embracing each other) Rock, Sima Peak, as well as Peacock Spreading Tail can all be seen from here.