Huashan Mountain, which is located about 120 km east of Xian, is one of China’s five great sacred mountains and has been a site of pilgrimages by emperors and locals since the 2nd century BCE. Standing more than 2000 meters tall, the mountain is known for its narrow passes, crags, steep precipices, rough terrain and five peaks. It was also long known for its Taoist monasteries, some of which served as abodes of well known Taoist religious figures. It was also a centre of Chinese martial arts.
The main route up the mountain is from the north peak. This can be scaled on foot or via cable cars. The route to the other peaks is through a meeting area below the summit of the north peak. The dangerous parts of the narrow route are colourfully referred to as heavenly steps, thousand foot precipice, hundred foot crevice, gold lock pass, the plank road and black dragon ridge. The route branches out to the various peaks at the gold lock pass.
Many climb the mountain to experience the thrill of getting to the various peaks via slippery and steep stone steps cut into the mountainside hanging on to a chains for dear life and walking onto the precarious plank path that is just holes cut into the cliff face to place the foot . Visitors cling onto a rope facing the cliff and move forward slowly. Wearing a harness seems like a good idea when navigating this portion of the route. At the end of the arduous trip is the fabulous experiences of seeing the sunrise on the east peak, gorgeous views from the south peak, and depending on the weather the cloud sea covering the land as far as the eye can see from the north peak and in winter fantastic views of snow covered landscapes that are truly out of this world from anywhere.
It is advisable to plan the trip up the mountain depending on what hikers wish to see and experience. Many stay overnight at guest houses and temples on the mountain to see the astonishing sights and diverse views at different times of the day.
Being in a central location in the city, the Citadines Xinqing Palace Xian offers the ideal base from which to explore the areas many modern and ancient landmarks. For business and leisure guests looking for long stay options, this prominent service apartments Xian offers well quipped, modern studio and two bedroom apartments and a range of services and facilities that make these among the most comfortable Xian accommodation.
Jayani Senanayake is a writer who dabbles in travel and all things exotic. Under the pseudonym of Caliope Sage, she writes of the allures that must simply be discovered.