Should you visit Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) or Shangri-La?
Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the prices of travel for Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) and Shangri-La. We’ll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget. So, let's dig into it.
Huangshan (Yellow Mountain)
In the heart of the Anhui Province of China is the stunning Mount Huangshan, or Yellow Mountain. This UNESCO World Heritage Site draws in visitors from around the world to take in the stunning views and conquer a new challenge.
Mount Huangshan is one of the most popular destinations in China. Because of this, most of the towns and regions around it also use the name Huangshan. Even the closest town, Tunxi, has begun going by Huangshan City. Keep this in mind as it could potentially cause some confusion in transit.
The whole of Huangshan has 36 separate peaks rising approximately 1,800 meters into the air. It is often covered in a spiritual-feeling mist that makes the peaks appear to live in the clouds. It has inspired artists for centuries, and is often thought to be the model for the typical mountain ranges seen in ancient Chinese paintings.
The original Shangri-La existed in the fictional world of James Hilton's novel "The Lost Horizon." It was a hidden paradise, a place so beautiful that it couldn't possibly exist on earth. The Shangri-La that exists in Yunnan, China today was renamed from its former title Zhongdian in 2001 in order to associate the place with the mystical allure created in Hilton's novel. Visitors come to admire the traditional monasteries and temples set against a backdrop of mountain preserves and pristine lakes.
Which city is cheaper, Shangri-La or Huangshan (Yellow Mountain)?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) is $51, while the average daily cost in Shangri-La is $17. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each city. Below is a breakdown of travel costs for Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) and Shangri-La in more detail.
Accommodation prices vary by location and style, but travelers pay on average about $44 for a double occupancy room in Huangshan (Yellow Mountain).
If you're traveling alone, you may be able to find a budget hotel or hostel for around $3.89. But for two people in a standard two-person hotel room in Shangri-La the cost is $7.78 on average.
Hotel or hostel for one person
Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) $22
Typical double-occupancy room
Huangshan (Yellow Mountain)
Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) food costs typically run travelers around $17 per day. Eating every meal in a nicer restaurant will drive the cost up, and grabbing fast food or casual meals will help you save money.
The average traveler spends about $11 per day in Shangri-La for food, but obviously this is dependent on the type of restaurant and the amount of food ordered. To save money you can grab a lighter lunch or dinner, or you can try fast food or street food.
While taxis and private drivers typically cost much more than public transportation, people usually spend around $8.97 per day to get around in Huangshan (Yellow Mountain).
The average price of local transportation around Shangri-La is $0.15 per person, per day. As this average includes both taxis and public transport, keep in mind that the prices of private drivers and taxis are significantly more expensive than public transportation.
Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) $8.97
Typical Local Transportation prices in Huangshan (Yellow Mountain)
Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Huangshan (Yellow Mountain):
Activities, things to do, and other forms of entertainment usually cost around $24 per person, per day in Huangshan (Yellow Mountain). This cost includes the price of admission tickets to attractions and museums as well as daily tours.
Shangri-La's costs for entertainment, tickets, attractions, and tours will often cost around $8.91 per person, per day. This cost can vary widely by the type of activity, however, as this includes admission tickets, day tours, museums, and other things to do.
Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) $24
Typical Entertainment prices in Huangshan (Yellow Mountain)
Some typical examples of activities, tours, and entrance ticket prices in Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) are as follows:
Two Entrance Tickets
Two Cable Car Passes
The average person spends about $14 on alcoholic beverages in Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.
The average person spends about $15 on alcoholic beverages in Shangri-La per day. The more you spend on alcohol, the more fun you might be having despite your higher budget.
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) and Shangri-La, we can see that Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) is more expensive. And not only is Shangri-La much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Shangri-La would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Shangri-La and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Huangshan (Yellow Mountain) than you might in Shangri-La.
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