With the Yellow River to the north and Qinling Mountain Range at the back to the south,Mount Hua (2,160 meters above the sea level),one of the five best-known mountains in China,stands in the south of Huayin City,120 kilometers east of Xi’an ,and commands the gateway from Central China to the Northwest.It is well known for its precipitousness and picturesque beauty,acclaimed as” the first steep mountain in the world.”
Mount Hua is a huge body of granite,its history can backdate to 120 million years ago.It boasts five imposing peaks with precipices and overhanging rocks:The east one(the Sunrise Peak), which is the best location to view sunrising;The north one(the Clouds Terrace Peak),which is famous for vertical cliffs on its three sides;The west one(the LotusFlower Peak),and the south one(the Wild Goose- resting Peak) which are the main peaks and alsothe steepest of Mount Hua;And the central one(the Jade Maiden Peak),which links the east,west, and south peaks.Each presents a unique scenic beauty,surrounded by over 36 minor peaks.”Flying outside the clouds and its reflection in the Yellow River”,from a distance, these five major peaks look like a lotus flower among the mountains,hence the name of Mount Hua (Hua means flower in chinese). The changeable weather makes”Cloudy Mount Hua”,”Rainy Mount Hua”, “Misty Mount Hua”,and”Snowy Mount Hua”on different season.Such special scenes make visitors feel as if they were in a fairland.
Mount Hua is the cradle of the chinese culture.According Zhang Taiyan,a noted scholar ofthe Qing Dynasty,”Zhonghua”,”Huaxia”all intitled its name from”Mount Hua”.The Book of the Eastern Zhou Dynasty has a record of the mountain.The Records of the History of theWestern Han Dynasty carries the stories of the Yellow Emperor,King Yao and King Shunvisiting the mountain.Many emperors,including the First Emperor of the Qin,Emperor Wudiof the Han,Empress Wu Zetian and Emperor Xuanzong of the Tang,also came here to hold sacrificial ceremony in the past.Mount Hua is also “the Fourth Heaven”in Taoist doctrine.Here and there are dotted with taoist temples,pavilions, scuptures and engravings.
Of the ruins,Jade Spring Garden ,Zhenyue Palace,and the Eastern Monastery are vey famous. Famous scholars of various dynasties,such as Yang Zhen of the Han,Gu Yanwu of the Qing,also stayed here and taught students.The legends such as” Chengxiang split the rock to save his mother”,”blowing the vertical bamboo flute to attract phoenix”,all of these make Mount Hua full of magical colour.There are over 210 scenic spots:the Thousand -Foot Precipice,the Hundred-Foot Crevice ,Laojun’s Furrow ,the Sparrow Hawks’ Cliff, and so on,visiters can not help but show great admiration.
In recent years,the tourism here has developed rapidly. Mount Hua has been listed as oneof the national AAAA scenic spots,one of the 10 famous mountains in China, and awarded a golden medal” Top 50 Destinations in China for Foreigners” in 2006.Nowadays,Mount Hua has become a heat scenic spot for tourists all over the world.
Overlooking from sky the five peaks of the Mt Hua make up a huge Lotus flower. And each peaks of the mountain has its own unique feature.
North Peak of Mt Huashan
The north peak is in the north part of Mount Hua, with another name, Yuntai Peak. There was a pavilion in the peak, named Yiyunting, which means a pavilion connecting with clouds, although now the pavilion leaves only a relic. Standing on the peak, one can enjoy the beauty of the other three peaks and Changlongling in the south. It is a good place of resting when climbing. In 1996, the cable car to the peak went into operation.
There are many scenic spots in the peak. Changchun Stone Room is one of them. Changchun is a man whose name is Du Ruoqian. He is a Daoist and practices Daoism in this place. He likes playing the flute and throws the flute away when the tune is finished. He can stay in the room for several months, playing the flute, so he calls himself Mr. Changchun, which has the similar pronunciation of Changchui, meaning playing the flute usually.
Another scenic spot is Zhenwudian, which is built for the God Zhenwu. He is also a Daoist and practices Daoism in Mount Hua. He has three birds to tell him things will happen in the future and he has the ability of summoning soil and oil.
The south peak is 2154.9 meters high and it is the highest peak. There are three summits in the peak, in the shape of a giant sitting with the face to the south. One summit is called Luoyan Summit because wild goose always falls on the summit. And the top of this summit is the highest point of Mount Hua. Songhui Summit is a little lower than Luoyan Summit, but larger than it. There are a lot of Himalayan pines in the summit and Baidi Temple stands on the summit. The temple is covered by iron tile, so it is also called Iron Tile Temple. There are also some scenic spots on the peak, for example, Nantianmen, the door to the heaven, is located here.
The west peak is 2082.5 meters above sea level. It is also called Lianhua Peak because the huge stone in the peak is with the shape of a lotus and Lianhua means lotus in English. The whole peak is a megalith. The ridge connecting with the south peak is 300 meters in length, with the shape of a Chinese dragon, so the ridge has another name, Changlongling. It is one of the dangerous roads in Mount Hua
There are so many myths and legends about the peak, in which a legend is the most famous. The protagonists in the tale are a fairy and a man. They fall in love with each other, but it is forbidden by the rule of the heaven. So the fairy is prisoned under the Mount Hua after giving birth to a baby. When the baby grows up, he tries his best to save her mother and finally cuts through the mount. And there are also a lot of calligraphy works in the peak from famous calligraphers.
East Peak of Mt Huashan
The east peak is 2096.2 meters above sea level and it is the best peak to see the sun rise, so it has another name, Chaoyang Peak. The peak is consisted of 4 summits. The summit with Chaiyang Tai on is the highest one. Yunv Summit is in the west and Shifeng Summit is in the east, with Botai in the south. Some regard Yunv Summit a separate peak and give it a name of the Middle Peak.
In the past, the road to the peak is so abrupt that it is difficult to climb to the top. But now the steps are built for safe climbing. As for the scenic spot, the most famous is the Huayue Xianzhang, which is one of the eight wonders of central Shaanxi plain. Its shape is a left hand and one can see it from very far, but only in sunny days. It is said that the palm was left when a celestial being separate two mountains. And a hotel was built at the relics of Bajing Palace in 1953.
The Middle Peak sits in the circle created by the East Peak, the West Peak, and the South Peak. It is actually a relatively little peak which leans to the west side of the East Peak. So it was regarded as a part of the East Peak in ancient time. Nowadays the public list it as one of the five main peaks of Mt. Hua (It is also called Lotus Flower Mount.) The legend says there was a gentle man in the Spring and Autumn Periods who was good as Xiao, the vertical bamboo flute, caught the heart of the daughter of Qin Mugong, one of the kings of the Qin State. The daughter gave up the honor and splendor of the royal court life and settled on the Middle Peak with her sweetheart. Later generations called her Jade Lady(Jade in Chinese culture present thing of inner beauty ), so the Middle Peak is also called Jade Lady Peak.
Looking afar tourist will find the Middle Peak looks like a bird head. To the top of the peak exists a huge rocky beam taking a shape of turtle. The later generations built a memorial temple on East Peak top in memory of Jade Lady. In front of the temple there are five stone basins, they are said to be the hair-bathing basins of Jade Lady. Next to the stone basins stands a stone horse which is said to be the incarnation of the horse rode by Jade Lady. Behind the memorial temple are memorial site set by modern people according to the legendary.
Tours including Mt. Huashan:
One Day Mt. Huashan Small Group Tour
Xian Mt. Huashan Adventure Day Tour
3 Days Xian & Mt. Huashan Tour
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