Mount Lushan & Lushan National Park
Mount Lushan, which occupies an area of 250sq.km/97sq.mi, is one of the most popular recreational and holiday areas in China. It lies to the south of Jiujiang (bus connections), between Changjiang and Lake Poyang Hu. The massif comprises over 90 separate peaks, the highest, Hanyang Feng, having an altitude of 1474m/4836ft. Under the Han dynasty (206 BC-AD 220), Lushan developed into a Buddhist center. Poets and writers in later centuries waxed lyrical about the irresistible charms of this mountain landscape. According to one such poet, Lushan has at least 2000 scenes of natural beauty with which to captivate the observer. The mountain also boasts intriguing rock formations, waterfalls, springs, pools, pavilions, temples and stone inscriptions.Lushan National Park is a popular tourist destination featuring stunning landscapes and large numbers of Taoist and Buddhist temples.
Temple of the East Wood
The Temple of the East Wood (Donglin Sin) on the northwest slopes of Mount Lushan is of extraordinary significance for Buddhists, as it was here that the monk Huiyuan (334-416) founded the School of the Pure Country (Jingtu Zong), a Buddhist sect. In 381 the monk had the temple built and lived in it for many years, interpreting and commenting on the teachings of Buddha.The Pagoda of the West Wood, which rises up to the west of the temple, dates from the 8th C.
Guling is a spa situated in the middle of the Lushan massif at an altitude of 1167m/3829ft. Often referred to as the ''Garden among the Clouds'', the resort has several modern hotels providing accommodation for visitors.
Dragon Head Rock
2km/1mi to the southwest of Guling stands the Dragon Head Rock (Longshou Ya), from which there is a magnificent view across pine-woods, waterfalls, criss-crossing paths and highly unusual rock formations.
Three Precious Trees
The Three Precious Trees (San Baoshu), about 1km.75mi south of Guling, are said to have been planted by the Buddhist monk Tan Xi 1500 years ago. They are described in the ''Travel Sketches of Xu Xiake'', which date from the Ming period (1368-1644).
School of the White Stag Cave
The School of the White Stag Cave (Bailudong Shuyuan), situated in the valley of the Wualo Feng, is one of the four most famous places of learning of the Song era (960-1279), in which the famous Confucian philosopher Zhu Xi (1130-1200) taught. Behind the school there is a cave with the stone sculpture of a white stag dating from the 16th C. It was fashioned to commemorate the brothers Li Bo and Li Shu, who sought refuge in the cave in 785 and spent their days there in the company of a white stag.
Cave of the Immortal
The Cave of the Immortal (Xianren Dong) is 10m/33ft deep and lies to the northwest of Guling. According to legend, it was once the dwelling of the immortal Taoist monk Lü Dongbing (b. 798). The inscription at the entrance to the cave dates from 1255.
The Floral Path (Hua Jing), which lies to the east of the Cave of the Immortal, was celebrated by the poet Bai Juyi back in the Tang period (618-907). A stone tablet with the inscription ''Floral Path'', which is said to have been engraved by Bai Juyi himself, is kept in the main pavilion.
Pavilion of the Imperial Stele
The Pavilion of the Imperial Stele (Yubei Ting), not far in a northwesterly direction from the Cave of the Immortal, was built by the Ming Emperor Taizu in the 14th C to commemorate a meeting with the immortal Taoist Zhou Dian. The inscription on the stele dates from the time of this emperor.
Hanpokou Hill, about 2km/1mi southeast of Guling, is dominated by two pavilions, Hanpo Ting and Wangpo Ting. From the hill the visitor has a picturesque view of Lake Poyang Hu and the Changjiang.
Sandie Quan Waterfall
The Sandie Quan Waterfall, which lies in the eastern part of the Lushan massif, forms a series of three cascades as it tumbles down into the valley below.
Summit of the Five Old Men
The Summit of the Five Old Men (Wulao Feng) in the southeast of the massif resembles, as its name suggests, the shape of five old men or five lotus blossoms.