Sunday, April 22, 2012

Guanzhai Mountain, Longyan

Located 0.6 miles to the eastern suburb of Liancheng County in Fujian Province, Guanzhai Mountain is renowned for its majestic, attractive scenic sight as well as the unique Danxia landscape.

The shape of the mountain is like the crown of Xiezhi that is a strange beast in Chinese ancient legend, hence the mountain’s name “Guanzhai”.

Guanzhai Mountain is one of the two Danxia mountain wonders of Fujian Province, Wuyi Shan in the north and Guanzhaishan in the south.

The scenic spot is composed of five parts: the Guanzhai Mountain, Shimen Lake, Zhuan stockade village, Qishi stockade village and Jiulong Lake, displaying a fantastic view with magnificent mountains, remote valleys and grottoes.

The Mountains cover an area of 123 square kilometers.  Tremendous biodiversity on the mountain mirrors different zones of elevation and bedrock type, and many isolated communities of plants and animals are found nowhere else, making Guanzhai truly unique.  The Danxia landforms are well developed in Guanzhai with pillars of sandstone rising through erosion of the many crevasses formed by joints and faults formed during tectonic interactions between ancient plates.To see the whole area would take a lot of time and energy and you have to choose one of the scenic spots to go.

Our driver told us the main Guanzhai Mountain entrance would require quite a bit of mountain climbing and suggested we take a boat ride at the Jiulong (9 dragons) Lake where we can also see the scenic views of the mountain. There is also a boat ride at the main entrance but the admission ticket is CNY115 which includes the boat ride and the climb. We went for the Jiulong Lake boat ride which is CNY80.

The lake is quite a distance from the ticket booth so we paid another CNY5 each to ride a buggy to the lake. It is worth the spending as the weather was rather cold and we also save time and energy. There weren't many tourists around. In fact we were the only two passengers in the boat. Some locals came to have a swim. What a crazy idea! Brrrrr.

On the way to the mountain we stopped for lunch at the foothill. I read about the famous Liancheng white duck and wanted to try it. We were quite disappointed with the duck soup. Nothing special, just a herbal duck soup. And the duck meat was so tough. Even our driver complained about it.

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