Huangshan 1
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The Scenic Splendours Of Huangshan & Hangzhou

Part A – The Last Attempt to Admire the Beauty of Mt. Huangshan

1. Introduction

In 2008 I had planned twice, once in April and again in October to explore Huangshan Mountains. Unfortunately, because of the protracted problems with my left eye, I had no choice but to cancel the planned visits.

After my left eye had fully recovered by the middle of 2009, I made up for lost time and visited Sarawak’s Mulu National Park and Gunong Api in July and North Vietnam in September. Having successfully accomplished the two journeys with my left eye still remained in good health; I decided to explore Mt. Huangshan for the third time in November.

For this expedition, I arranged the itinerary with CITS Huangshan, the same travel agent I had dealt with in 2008. But this time, I planned not only a longer sojourn in Mt. Huangshan and around Huangshan (Tunxi) City but also a free-and-easy stay in Hangzhou City.

Only three persons from Malaysia took part in this exploration. They were: my friend Kenny, my wife Lucy and me. In addition, our friend, Jenny Zhang from Wuyishan joined us in Hangzhou for a couple days. We left for Hangzhou on 12th November and Kenny came back on 26th Nov while Lucy and I stayed in Hangzhou and returned on 30th Nov.

2. The Brief Itinerary

Day 1 (12/11) Arrive Hangzhou airport at 13:00 and take the public taxi/bus to reach Tunxi Bus Station and transfer to Huangshan International Hotel.

Day 2(13/11) Hiking in Huangshan
Drive for one and half hours to reach Yungu Valley, the startpoint for hiking from the eastern steps. It will take about 3 hours to the White Goose Ridge and overnight in Beihai Hotel.

Day 3 (14/11) Hiking in Huangshan
Watch the sunrise in the morning. After breakfast, we will do the trekking down from the Refreshing Terrace. When we get to the right bottom to the north of Huangshan, we'll be visiting some scenic sites there. We will then take the cable car or just hike on the same way back to our hotel. Stay in Beihai Hotel.

Day 4 (15/11) Hiking in Huangshan
After breakfast, we'll be moving from Beihai Hotel to Xihai Hotel. After checking into the hotel, we will make an excursion to the Grand Canyon. Stay in Xihai Hotel.

Day 5 (16/11) Hiking in Huangshan
Today, we'll be hiking from the eastern steps to the western steps. Stay in Jade Screen Hotel.

Day 6 (17/11) Hiking in Huangshan and Drive to Jiuhua Shan (B,L ,D)
After breakfast, we'll be hiking down the mountain from the western steps After lunch down the mountain, you can take a hot spring bath for a relaxation before driving to Jiuhua Shan. Stay in Julong Hotel.

Day 7 (18 /11) Jiuhua Shan
Today we'll take cable car to visit the Longevity Palace. We'll also visit some other famous temples. After dinner, we'll go to Qi Yuan Temple to watch a Buddhist ceremony. Stay in Julong Hotel

Day 8 (19/11) Jiuhua Shan to Hongcun
After breakfast, take tourist bus to Ming Garden Scenic Area, and then take cable car to go to the top of the peak. Leave Jiuhua Mountain in the afternoon and drive to Hongcun Village, a world cultural l heritage site. Stay in Hongcun Hotel.

Day 9 (20/11) Hongcun
Today we will be visiting two fantastic villages of Hongcun and Nanping. Stay in Hongcun Hotel

Day 10 (21/11) Hongcun
After breakfast, we’ll set for Mukeng and Bamboo Forest. If time permits, Lucun, another village will also be covered. Back to the downtown of Huangshan City in the afternoon to visit the famous Old Street, center of the old town section. Stay in Huangshan International Hotel

Day 11 (22/11) Tunxi - Shexian - Tunxi
Today, we'll pay a visit to Shexian, a county well known for its long history and rich culture. There you can enjoy the unique Xuguo Archway, Doushan Street, Tangmo Water Village and Tangyue Archways, the last being the only one in China now. Later, we'll visit the Bao's Family Garden, Back to Tunxi in the afternoon. Huangshan International Hotel

Day 12 (23/11) Qiandaohu Lake
After breakfast, we'll be driving to the Shendu Pier, where we'll embark on the boat to cruise on the lake. Back to the downtown in the afternoon and stay in Huangshan international Hotel.

Day 13 (24/11) Wuyuan Tour
Today's highlight will be the visit to Wuyuan County in Jiangxi province. We'll be visiting Likeng Village and Xiaoqi Village. It takes us about 2 hours to reach Wuyuan by car. We'll be back to Huangshan City in the afternoon. Stay in Huangshan International Hotel

Day 14 (25/11) Huangshan to Hangzhou
By public transport to Hangzhou and put up in apartment.

Upon checking into Huangshan International Hotel, we had our dinner with our Guide, Kelly Lin, After dinner, we had a discussion on our itinerary. Kelly informed us that it was snowing and foggy in Mt. Huangshan for the last couple of days and it would be better to postpone our visit to the mountains. Instead, she suggested visiting Jiuhua Shan first before going up Mt. Huangshan. She said the inclement weather was most unexpected at this time of the year and she hoped that it would improve soon. We had no option but to agree to the change.


Map showing location of Mt. Juihua, Mt. Huangshan, and towns/villages around Huangshan City

3. Jiuhua Shan – (13 & 14 Nov 09)

Jiuhua Shan – (Nine Glorious Mountains) is one of the four famous and sacred Buddhist Mountains in China. The others are Putuoshan, Emeishan and Wutaishan. Jiuhua Mt. is famous for its landscape and ancient temples. It has 99 peaks of various sizes and shapes and 79 well-preserved temples. Within the 120sq km of its boundary there are many grotesque mountains, strange rocks, spring and brooks.

At its height, its 150 temples once housed more than 3,000 monks and nuns living and worshipping in the mountains. It functioned as a religious centre in China for hundreds of years and today it is still very active.

We traveled in a van from our hotel in Tunxi City in the morning of 13th November to Jiuhua Shan. We arrived just before noon and checked into Jiulong Hotel, located in Juihua Street and right in the centre of Jiuhua Mountain.

After our lunch, we set out our journey to the mountain. But it was misty and cold and nothing much could be seen up there. What a miserable day!

Misty and Cold on 13th Nov

Picturesque Jiulong Town in Jiuhua Shan

The next day (14th Nov) was a clear day and we were able to enjoy our hike up to thetop of the mountains, Celestial Terrace, more than 1,300m above sea level and visited the highest temple called Tian Tai Ze.

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