Friday, November 28, 2008

Series of Mountain (1): Travel to Mount Lushan

Today we will travel to Mount Lushan.Lushan is one of China's famous mountains and spiritual centers. It is located in Jiujiang, Jiangxi Province, and covers an area of 350 square kilometers.

Many tourists enjoy an Overlooking on top of the mountain, it’s breathtaking. From the south, the Poyang Lake is like a silver mirror. In the north, the Yangtze River looks like a jade ribbon flying to the east. While traveling around Lushan, you can browse imposing and magnificent peaks, unique waterfalls, Buddhist and Taoist temples, and historical sites as well as a changing sea of clouds.

The "Cloud Sea" at Lushan is impressive. Su Dongpo, a well-known poet of the Song Dynasty, honored the "Cloud Sea" of Lushan for its ever-changing mist in one of his poems. He pointed out, "The failure to get the real looks of the mountain only results in the fact that you are right in the midst of it". By surprising contrast Lushan ranks as one of the top spots for watching a sunrise.

Be sure to stop by the Five Elderly Men Peaks(where a waterfall cascades from rock to rock in a total drop of 300 meters), Three-Stage Spring (the most outstanding water attraction), Hanpo Pass (an ideal place to view the sunrise), Lulin Lake, Great Tianchi Lake (a good place to view a sunset and enjoy the Yangtze River), Flower Path (where the noted poet of the Tang Dynasty, Bai Juyi, wrote poems expressing his admiration of the peach blossoms), Ruqin Lake, Jingxiu Valley, Immortal's Cavern (a stone statue of the immortal stands inside the cave and a spring trickles all the year round), Lesser Tianchi Lake (a good place to enjoy the beauty of the Poyang Lake), Donglin Temple (the birthplace of the Pure Land Sect of Buddhism), and the White Deer Cave Academy (one of the earliest institutes of higher learning in China).

Also, travel to Guling Town, the center of the scenic area, is a unique town on the mountain. At an altitude of 1167 meters, it is surrounded on three sides by mountains. To its north is Scissors Pass. A mountain highway leads to the various scenic spots from the town. The resort town of Lushan was established in the late 1800s by and for European and American travelers, and is distinguished by the colonial architecture of its buildings. After 1949, it became famous as a favored meeting place for the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China. It hosted the Eighth Plenum of the Eighth Central Committee, also known as the Lushan Plenum, taking place from July 23 to August 2, 1959. It also hosted the Second Plenum of the Ninth Central Committee in August 1970.

Tips:Due to the sharp difference in temperature between day and night, it is best to take a few extra clothes, even in mid-summer when the average temperature in the mountains is 22 degrees Centigrade. A raincoat for the ever-changing humid climate is essential.

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