Sichuan Province lies in the southwest of China and in the upper reach of the Yangtze River. The 130° meridian line of East Longitude divides the province into two distinctive parts in topography: the western part is high in altitude and belongs to the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau while the eastern part is the hilly Sichuan Basin.
The province sits between the Qingling Mountain and Yungui Plateau. Distance from the east to the west is about 1,200 kilometers and the distance in the widest part from the south to the north is about 900 kilometers. Sichuan Province is one of the fifth largest provinces in China and it has an area of 570,000 km2, accounting for 6% of the total area of China.
Sichuan is a mountainous region. Mountains, plateaus and hills take up 97.46% of its total area. Generally speaking, the altitude differences in this province are noticeable. And this is especially true in the mountainous areas and the altitude difference in these areas may exceed 500 meters. The lowest part of the province is in the east, with an average altitude of about 70 meters aboe sea level. The highest place is the Gonggar Mountain which is in the west of the province, its altitude being 7,556 meters.
Sichuan is diverse in landforms. Throughout the province, there are plateaus, mountains, hills and plains. The west of the province features deep valleys, modern glaciers and swamps while the northwest is mainly occupied by mountains. The middle of the region is a expansive basin called Sichuan Basin, in which the Chengdu Plain, the largest plain in southwest China is located.
Sichuan's complicated landforms have resulted in some unparalled natural scenery in the region The Jiuzhaigou and Huanglong National Park are two of the most beautiful parks in the country.
Standing side by side with the regional natural beauty are the place's numerous cultural relics and historical sights. Throughout the region, travelers can find Mt Emei and Mt. Qingcheng, two of the most sacred mountains in China, Doujiangyan Irrigation Project, the oldest water control project in the world and the Giant Buddha in Leshan. These three historical sites along with the Jiuzhaigou and Huanglong National parks are included in the World Heritage List.
Sichuan is the home to Giant Panda. China's Giant Panda breeding center is located in Wolong in Sichuan Province.