|Map of Wutai Mountain |
Mt. Wutai Pictures
The beautiful scenery here is a masterpiece of exquisite acts of nature, predominantly visible over the five main peaks: Wanghai Peak in the east, Guayue Peak in the west, Jinxiu Peak in the south, Yedou Peak in the north, and the central Cuiyan Peak.
Wanghai Peak (Peak Overlooking the Sea) in the east
|Great White Pagoda in |
Tayuan Temple, Mt.Wutai
Guayue Peak (Hanging Moon Peak) in the west
Guayue Peak reaches an altitude of 2,773 meters (9,097.8 feet) and is 13 kilometers (8.1 miles) west of Taihuai Town. This peak provides unique imagery in the evening when visitors can see the elegant and serene sight of the graceful but hazy moon hanging above dense pine trees.
Jinxiu Peak (Splendor Peak) in the south
Jinxiu Peak is 2,485 meters high (8,152.9 feet), and 12 kilometers (7.5 miles) south of Taihuai Town. This peak's beauty is in the colorful flowers that grow all over it, and emit scents and perfumes from early May until late August. They decorate the peak by making it look as if it is wearing a floral silk coat.
Yedou Peak (Peak of Flourishing Leaves) in the north
This peak, 5 kilometers (3.1 miles) north of Taihuai Town, is the highest point of Mt. Wutai, as well being the highest in Northern China, at 3,058 meters (10,032.8 feet). On the terrace of the peak, there is a natural pool that is over 300 square meters (358.8 square yards) From the terrace looking towards the north, Mt. Hengshan looms blanketed in endless greenery.
Cuiyan Peak (Peak of Green Rocks) in the middle
According to its name, one can guess the scenery of this peak. The rocks are green not because of their own color, but because of the moss on their surface. The huge rocks resemble moving dragons when seen in sunlight, from which the name "dragon-writhing rocks" has been derived.
It is said that this mountain is the dwelling place of Manjusri Bodhisattva. 360 temples were built here dating back to the Tang Dynasty (618-907) but now only 47 of them exist. Over the years, incalculable numbers of pilgrims and visitors have come here. Among these magnificent temples, five are the most famous: Xiantong Temple, TayuanTemple, Manjusri Temple (Summit Bodhisattva), Shuxiang Temple, and Luohou Temple.
Tayuan Temple The 75.3-meter-high (247-feet-high) Tayuan Temple is the symbol of Mt. Wutai, so it becomes a "must-see". Principally it possesses the white Tibetan-style dagoba also called Dabai Pagoda (Big White Pagoda).
Legend has it that Wenshu Bodhisattva dwelt in it, so it is also called "ZhenrongYuan" (real appearance) or "Bodhisattva Summit". It was built originally in Northern Wei Dynasty (386-534). In the time of Emperor Yongle of Ming Dynasty (1368 -1644), Lamaists began to be stationed in Mt. Wutai, and the great Lama resided there. From then on, it became the principal temple of Lamaism. Emperors Kangxi and Qianlong of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) both went there and left ever-lasting epigraphs.
To the east of the Xiantong Temple, Luohou Temple was set up as a Lamaist temple in the Tang Dynasty. One of its wonders is a wooden lotus-shaped flower. Machinery turns it and the wooden petals open and close. Inside are carved Buddhist figures on a square platform.
For tourists who want to visit all Manjusri Bodhisattva's statues in the five temples but cannot for time constraints or other reasons, Dailuo Peak (Dark Green Snail Peak) is a wonderful place to visit, because Wufang Manjusri Palace (Palace of Manjusri Bodhisattvas from five directions) houses statues resembling the five Manjusri Bodhisattvas of each terrace. It is located to the east of the temple group in the center of Taihuai Town. 1,080 steps lead to the top of the snail-shaped peak and a cable car is also available for convenience.
Besides these temples, there are other exquisitely constructed ones, such as Jinge Temple (golden temple), Nanchan Temple, Dailuoding, Shifangtang, Wangfo Temple, and so on.
Over 600 species of plants can be found, of which more than 150 species of grass can be used as rare herbs. Special local produce, Taimo, (mushrooms grown on the tops of peaks of Mt. Wutai) is of quite high nutritional value and with a delicate taste.
Since many temples are interspersed in the mountain, numerous art works were cared for and have been preserved as relics-sculptures, murals, calligraphy, as well as architecture. Pagodas built in the style of those in ancient India added new types to traditional ones. Nanchan Temple and Foguang Temple, built in the Tang Dynasty, are representatives of the ancient wooden style of construction, and have the longest history amongst the temples in the mountain.
|Admission Fee:||CNY 168 (April 1 to October 31) |
CNY 140 (November 1 to next March 31)
|Other fees:||Eco-bus: CNY 50 (It's valid for three days) |
Dailuo Peak cable car: CNY 35 (up-bound), CNY 30 (down-bound)