Mountains, temples and Buddhas
After we visited the pandas in Chengdu, we continued our journey to the south, to Emei Shan, about 180km from Chengdu away. With the train it took us round about 1h, it was a comfortable journey.
Emei Shan is famous for the beautiful mountain scenery and the old temples around the mountain area. You can find there also the short tail macaque, very popular amongst the Chinese tourists. We stayed there a bit longer, in total 6 nights. We went almost every day for hiking, climbed so many steps ups and down and visited many temples. Our time in China is exactly during the high season where the school holiday has started, therefore wherever we went it was so crowded, especially during weekends. It´s unbelievable how many people are on the move. Outside the main attractions where no cars could get to the places, it was more relax and we could enjoy our hiking. It was quite disappointing to see so many plastic trash lying in the forest and rivers along the hiking routes. Somehow the Chinese don´t really have a sense for environment protection, it´s really sad. Hopefully it will change one day.
The most famous mountain where almost everyone climbed when visiting that area is the Emei, with a height of over 3000m. On top of the mountain you can find a huge golden Buddha statue with many heads and four elephants, each showing to the different cardinal point. Furthermore there is a golden temple, called the golden summit and another temple building. On a clear shiny day you are above the cloud and can see the other mountains around that area. We didn´t have a perfect weather, but the view was ok.
We also made a day trip to Le Shan, a neighbour city of Emei Shan. In Le Shan you can see the giant Buddha, the biggest in the world with a height of 71m and a shoulder width of 28m. The statue is round about 1200 years old, it looks very battered…The sight was really graceful, especially when you stand on the ground in front of the toe and look above, it´s really giant. Around the giant Buddha in the park area, it´s worth to spend your day over there as you can see pagoda, temples, caves with tombs and so many other Buddha statues. The park is really nice arranged.
We made the experience that the people in Sichuan province are more relax compare to the people from the big cities, they are friendlier and more helpful. For us it was really an ease to see another picture of China.
During our trip in Le Shan we met two familiar faces from Xi’an, two guys from the Netherland who just finished their high school and travelling for about 2 month through Asia before they start their study. In Xi’an we joined the same tour group for visiting the terracotta army. When we met them in Le Shan we spent half day with them together to see the sights, we had nice conversations and it was a great time. In Emei when we had one of our hiking tours we met a Chinese student name Sky and Ren Jiadong, an engineer doing his PhD. We spent also half a day during our hiking tour together and afterwards we went to the city to had dinner together. We had nice conversations and had a great day.
From the culinary point of view the people from the Sichuan province like to eat spicy, famous for their Sichuan pepper. Mostly the dishes are also very oily, for most western stomach not really suitable…I had to experience it on my own…
The days at the mountain area were really good for us, out of the crowded hectic big cities and in into the nature. Mery and I will now travel different ways for a short time. She will fly directly to Hong Kong and I will fly to Puning, a village in the southern part of China. I would like to make a travel back in the history of my Chinese family. We will meet again in Hong Kong 2 days later. We will keep you updated.