Mount Huangshan (Yellow Mountain or Mt. Huangshan) is one of the top ten must-see scenic spots of China. It’s located in Huangshan City, Anhui province, characterized by the four wonders, namely, odd-shaped pines, grotesque rock formation, seas of clouds and crystal-clear hot springs. Yellow Mountain is celebrated for having all the features of mountain scenery.
Known as the No. 1 Mountain under heaven, it features numerous imposing peaks (77 exceed an altitude of 1,000m), forests of stone pillars and evergreen sturdy pines; other features include grotesquely-shaped rocks (many of which are individually named, such as ‘pig-headed monk eating water melon’), waterfalls, pools and hot springs. Because of its mists and clouds, natural scenery in the area changes beyond prediction. Xu Xiake, a noted Chinese geologist and traveler in Ming Dynasty, praised Yellow Mountain as the best of all mountains.
• In 1982, it was selected as the first batch of national park of China;
• In 1986, it was selected as one of the Top 10 China Attractions;
• In 1990, it was added into the world heritage list as a double heritage in culture and nature;
• In 2004, it was selected as World Geopark.
Main Scenic Areas in Mt. Huangshan
Yellow Mountain can be divided into Beihai Scenic Area, Xihai Scenic Area, Songgu Scenic Area, Yungu Scenic Area, Yuping Scenic Area, Baiyun Scenic Area and Hot Spring Scenic Area.
【Beihai (North Sea) Scenic Area】
Beihai (North Sea) Scenic Area is just a few kilometers away from Xihai Scenic Area. In the Dawn Pavilion in front of guesthouse, you may enjoy the beautiful scenery of Shixin Peak as well as the Stalagmite Bridge that inspires imagination of various fairy scenes.
【Xihai (West Sea) Scenic Area】
Taking the west route or north route from Bright Top, you may go to Xihai or Beihai scenic area, which are two most famous scenic areas of Yellow Mountain. Descending Bright Top, you will come to Xihai via a newly opened tourist route. A mystical Stone Flow From Afar first comes into sight with a huge 10 meter high rock weighing 600 tons standing on it.
【Grand Canyon of Xihai (West Sea)】
Grand Canyon of Xihai (West Sea) is newly opened scenic area in Yellow Mountian opened to public on May, 2001. Covering the most prime scenery of Xihai Scenic Area, it starts at Paiyun Pavilion, linking White Cloud Area at Fairy-walking Bridge and creating a breath-taking circular sightseeing route.
【Yuping (Jade Screen) Scenic Area】
Jade Screen or Yuping Scenic Area is famous for its Jade Screen (Yuping) Tower which is also the name coming from. The Jade Screen (Yuping) Tower stands against Jade Screen Peak (Yuping Peak) with the high of 1,668 meter. Originally the seat of Manjusri Temple, it is now a tourist center with complete service facilities. Around the Tower are elephant and lion shaped rocks and ancient pines.
【White Clouds Scenic Area】
The West Sea, known as the Mystery Valley for the many clusters of peaks and the fathomless depth of the valley has been opened up as the White Clouds (Baiyun) Scenic Area. The seven-kilometer long newly paved staircase extends from the Hook Bridge Nunnery inside the West Gate of Yellow Mountain, across the bottom of the valley, and reaches the newly built Central Sea Pavilion at the Heavenly Sea.
【Hot Spring Scenic Area】
The Hot Spring Scenic Area of the Yellow Mountain of nationwide fame was discovered and tapped more than a thousand years ago. Gushing forth from the foot of Ziyun Peak, it has never run dry during the most severe droughts nor over flooded during excessive rain. It is of a high-temperature carbonate type, with therapeutic effects for metabolic disorder, cardiovascular disease and malfunctions of digestive, nervous and motorial systems.
Must See Sites around Mt. Huangshan
【Bright Summit Peak】
Bright Summit Peak, as its flat topography, is one of the best places on the Yellow Mountain to see the sunrise and watch sea of clouds. It is the second highest peak on the Yellow Mountain, located in the middle of the mountain which is 1860 meters above sea level. Along with the Heavenly Capital Peak and Lotus Peak, they are regarded as the three main peaks on the Yellow Mountain. The peak is high and wide here with long solar radiation, hence, so named “Bright Summit Peak”.
Standing here, you can have a panoramic view of the impressive wonders of the East China Sea; have a panoramic view numerous peaks like Heavenly Capital Peak and Lotus Peak, Jade Screen Peak, etc. A monk called Pu Men of Ming Dynasty ever built Dabei Monastery on this peak, now on this site, there has built the Yellow Mountain meteorological station.
Lotus Peak is located in the middle of the Yellow Mountain, southwest of the Jade Screen Peak. It is 1,864 meters above sea level, the highest peak of Mt. Huangshan, and the third highest peak in east China.
From the 1.5 km road (Lotus Ridge to Lotus Peak), along there are famous pines and Rhododendron anhweiense. Climbing the peak point of the Lotus Peak, you can have a look at Tianmu Mountain eastward, westward see the Lushan Mountain, northward see the Jiuhua Mountain and the Yangtze River. After the rain, you have the chance to appreciate the spectacular sea of clouds all directions.
Lotus Peak has one wonders that is the iron chain around the summit is hung with all kinds of locks. It is heart lock for a young couple to live hand in hand to show their together forever. Almost all of the guardrail chains have heart lock hung, which not only are concentric lock for lovers, but also are family portrait lock for family and longevity lock for kids in uneven size. Even more interesting, all kinds of lock from various countries in the world can be found here.
Flying Stone is located in White Clouds Scenic Area in Yellow Mountain, the north-west of the Bright Summit Peak, where is the concentration of 30% of the rocks in the Yellow Mountain. It is 1730 meters above sea level. Watching from the south to the north, it has a sharp top and round bottom, looking like a giant peach, which is called “Xiantao Stone” or “Xiantao Peak”. The rock composition of the two above and under stones is exactly the same; their contact area is very small, so that visitors feel that the upper rock like flying down the cliff from the far heaven, so named “Flying Stone”.
【West Sea Grand Canyon】
West Sea Grand Canyon, as the valley has the Baiyun Creek in it, also known as “White Cloud Valley”. It has a total length of about 15 km. It is one of the famous grand canyons in the Yellow Mountain, which allows people to enjoy the sight of the valley on the circling halfway canyon. Stepping into the canyon, it collects the quietness and magnificence together. It shows the new and unique charm of the Yellow Mountain.
【Dispelling Cloud Pavilion】
Dispelling Cloud Pavilion, built in 1935, is located in the West Sea Gate in Yellow Mountain Scenic Area in Huangshan city. It is an elongated landscape pavilion with granite stone structure. The pavilion is 5 meters in wigth, 5 meters in height, covering an area of 20 square meters. There is a platform in front of the pavilion which is around 70 square meters. It has a stone fence iron chain, visitors can lean on the railing to enjoy the wonders in the West Sea. It is faced with large peaks and gully, and has a wide vision, is one of the best place to enjoy the sight of the beauty of Yellow Mountain. It is also an ideal place to view and admire the rare stones in Yellow Mountain, hence, it is regarded as “rare stone exhibition hall”. Looking around from the Dispelling Cloud Pavilion, you can see forest-like ridges and peaks layer after layer. Whenever the clouds hover, now appearing, now disappearing, exactly like the numerous islands of the sea.
Huangshan Guest-Greeting Pine stands beside the Green Lion Stone in the Huangshan Yuping Scenic Area. It is 1670 meters above sea level with the tree height of 9.91 m. Today, the Guest-Greeting Pine has become the representative of Huangshan pines, a symbol of the entire Huangshan. It is the pride of the entire nation; it represents a tough and tensile, lofty and unyielding character.
Cableways in Mt. Huangshan
Taking a cable car in the Mt. Huangshan can save a lot of energy, especially for those who are not good at climbing mountain but want to see the beautiful scenery of the mountains. There are in total of 4 cableways open to tourists so far (2015). You may choose the one that meet your need according to your trip schedules.
【Taiping Cableway in Yellow Mountain】
Taiping Cableway in Yellow Mountain runs from Pine Valley Convent to Songlin Peak. The upper station of it is located on Songlin Peak, on the right side of Cloud-Repelling Pavilion in Xihai Scenic Area, and the lower station is sited in Pine Valley Convent in Pine Valley Scenic Area. This cableway is the longest reciprocating passenger ropeway in Asia. It has a total length of 3,709 meters, with a drop height of 1014.5 meters. There are six stents along the cableway. Three of them have a height of up to 64.5 meters. The largest span of them is 1,513.6 m. The carriage capacity of it is 101 people. It takes about 8 minutes to get to the terminal station.
The upper station of the cableway is located in Songlin Peak, on the right side of Cloud-Repelling Pavilion in Xihai Scenic Area, near to the Xihai Grand Valley. So it only takes about 10-30 minutes to walk to the Beihai Scenic Area or Xihai. The lower station is in Pine Valley Convent, which is only 20 km from the central area of Huangshan City. The scenery along the cableway is very beautiful, seeing endlessly rising peaks. Taking cable ride, travelers can overlook the Bright Top, Lion Grove, Red Cloud Peak, the Monkey Enjoying the Sea View, Bookcase Peak, Nine Dragon Peak and other fantastic views. Taking a cable car in the mountain can save a lot of energy, especially for those who are not good at climbing mountain but want to see the beautiful scenery of the mountains.
【Yungu Cableway in Yellow Mountain】
Yungu Cableway in Yellow Mountain runs from Cloud Valley Temple to White Goose Ridge. Yungu Cableway started to be built in December 2006, and in September 2007, it was and into trial operation. This cableway has a total length of 2666 meters, is the most advanced single-wire detachable grip hanging cableway equipment in the world. The bottom of the cableway is located in the Cloud Valley Scenic Area and the top of it reaches to White Goose Ridge. The drop height of the two ends is about 775 meters. There are a total of 69 passenger cable cars along the cableway. And each cable car is able to take at a maximum of 8 people. The running speed of it is 6 meters per second. There are a total of 14 brackets along the cableway. The maximum one-way transport capacity of it is 2000 persons/hour. Cableway offers visitors a safe, comfortable and efficient climbing condition. It just takes only 8 minutes from the bottom to the top. When the car is running through brackets, it makes passengers having a slight sense of weightlessness, but do not worry about it. Please be quite and do not make much noise when you are taking the cable cars.
Sitting in the scenic cable cars, visitors are exposed to the clouds and fog of Mt. Huangshan. Visitors can enjoy the beauty from different directions and angles. While being seat in the car, travelers can overlooks the Celestial Capital Peak, Lotus Flower Peak, Buddha Palm Peak, Dog Viewing the Moon, Immortal Drifting Sea, Cucurbit Stone, The Immortal Pointing the Way and other views. It is like floating in Wonderland, visitors can appreciate scenery slowly the cable cars. Taking the cable cars, visitors can also watch Begin-to-believe (Shixin) Peak, Guanyin Peak, Dream of Being a Successful Writer, The Monkey Enjoying the Sea View, Cool Terrace, as well as Xihai Scenic Area, Cloud-Repelling Pavilion, Red Cloud Peak Xihai Grand Valley, etc.
【Jade Screen (Yuping) Cableway in Yellow Mountain】
Jade Screen Cableway runs from Merciful Light Pavilion to Jade Screen Tower in the front part ofYellow Mountain. The bottom of the cableway is located in Merciful Light Pavilion and the top of it reaches to Jade Screen Tower. It leaps over Hot Spring Scenic Area and Jade Screen Scenic Area. Celestial Capital Peak and Lotus Flower Peak are on the both sides of the cableway. And it is quite near to the Guest-Greeting Pine. Jade Screen Cableway has a total length of 2176 meters, with a drop height of 752 meters. It is an automatic cycle hanging passenger ropeway. Mainly mechanical and electrical equipment is imported from the Austrian Doppelmayr Company, with safe and reliable performance. The maximum operating speed of it is up to 6 m/sec. The one-way transport capacity of it is 1000 people per hour. Equipped with six-seater cable cars, there are a total of 40 cable cars along the ropeway. This cableway brings together the most representative views of Mt. Huangshan Scenic Area. Taking the cable cars, passengers can overlooks the Celestial Capital Peak, Lotus Flower Peak, Standing Horse Bridge, Mid-Hill Temple, The Drunken Stone, streams and other views. Visitors can also sometimes see choppy sea of clouds. This cableway is very convenient for travelers. Usually, it takes 3 hours for visitors to climb from Merciful Light Pavilion to Jade Screen Tower by foot. But now it only takes 8 minutes to get to the top.
【Xihai Grand Canyon Sightseeing Cable Car】
Xihai Grand Canyon Sightseeing Cable Car is put into operation in June, 2013. The upper cable car station is located in the Stone Bed Peak (Shi Chuang Peak), with an altitude of 1706 meters; the lower station is located in the bottom of the Xihai Grand Canyon, with elevation of 1209 m. The total length of tram line is 892 meters, with a drop height difference of 497 meters. The construction of it started in April 2011 and was completed in June, 2013. The construction took 26 months. The main electromechanical equipment of the tram was imported from Austria Doppelmayr Company. The maximum operating speed of it is 8 m/s, the capacity of one-way traffic is 800 people per hour. The sightseeing cable car reflects the architectural harmony with the environment. The practical and aesthetic unity provides a safe, fast, comfortable and beautiful experience.
Remarks: In winter, three cableways of Yellow Mountain will stop operation for in turns, and the maintenance of each cableway takes about one month. So visitor must consult the relevant information before traveling for further travel arrangements.
Travel Tips for Huangshan Travel
Huangshan City VS Huangshan Scenic Area
Huangshan literally meaning yellow mountain locates in the Mount Huangshan Scenic Area in Huangshan city. Therefore when you take a taxi or using any transporting service please do make it clear that are you going to the Huangshan city or going to the Huangshan Scenic Area.
Huangshan Cable car shuts down at 16:00 everyday
You are advised to arrival Huangshan site before 4 p.m. if you are planning to go up to the mountain via cable car as the cable operation shuts down at 4 p.m. every day.
Hotels inside the Huangshan Mountain save you ticket fee
You are advised to check in with any hotel inside the Huangshan site rather than stay at the Tangkou town as there are so many separate sites inside Huangshan which you could not finish in a one-day-trip. In doing this, you could save the trouble and cost of another ticket when you trying to get into Huangshan again on the second day of your Huangshan visiting.
Book a hotel IN ADVANCE if you wish to stay at the top of Huangshan Mountain
Weather check, sun cream, disposable rain coat and passport are advised to get ready before your Huangshan trip and book a hotel in advice if you are intended to stay at the top mountain as the accommodations there are limited.