It is very important that to know the poverty degrees of the 11 Contiguous Destitute Areas in China for implementing the Contiguous Destitute Areas′ development and poverty alleviation strategy effectively. As development and poverty are the two sides of a coin, moreover, the development connotation has broadened from economic growth to comprehensive development and the poverty domain enlarged from single dimension to multi-dimensions, this article adopts a new way to assess poverty from the perspective of comprehensive development. Firstly, the author constructed a comprehensive development index system which covered 24 indicators of economic development, social service and ecological environment. Then, assessed and compared the poverty degrees of the 11 Contiguous Destitute Areas. The results showed that: 1) Among of the three dimensions of economic development, social service and ecological environment, economic development performance was the worst and became the poorest dimension of the 11 Contiguous Destitute Areas in China at present, the performance of social service had improved but still very poor, the ecological endowment was rich and ecological pressure was low so far, but the ecology was rather fragile and needed to pay more attention to it ; 2)The spatial distribution characteristics of poverty degree were that the poverty degree of Contiguous Destitute Area was more and more serious from eastern part to northern part and to southwestern part gradually, and southwestern hinterland was the poorest area of China, where covered 5 Contiguous Destitute Areas such as Wuling Mountain Area, Qinba Mountain Area, Wumeng Mountain Area, Border Area of Western Yunan and Rocky Desertification Area of Yunan, Guizhou and Guangxi, in these areas, there were lots of poor families and the poor degree was the most serious one; 3) Besides some common characteristics of the indicators which revealed the economic development level and regional self-development ability such as per capita GDP, per capita revenue, rural per capita net income, average years of education and scientific and technical personnel number in ten thousand people, there were obvious differences of indicators such as cement road ratio of administrative village, population density, nine-year compulsory education achievement ratio, village clinic coverage ratio and illiteracy rate of young adults among the 11 Contiguous Destitute Areas.