Talking to a journalist recently. He asked me: I’m thinking of going to China in Sept. or Oct. to do a story on China’s holy mountains. Have you been to many of them? Any particular one worth profiling?
Here is my answer:
I am sure you’ve researched, two different definitions of China’s holy mountains:
Wuyue, Five sacred mountains:
1. Tai Shan, Taoist mountain of the east, Shandong
2. Heng Shan Bei, Taoist mountain of the north, Shanxi
3. Hua Shan, Taoist mountain of the west, Shaanxi
4. Heng Shan Nan, Taoist mountain of the south, Hunan
5. Song Shan, Taoist mountain of the center, Henan
Four Buddhist mountains:
1. Wutai Shan in Shanxi
2. Putuo Shan in Zhejiang
3. Ermei Shan in Sichuan
4. Jiuhua Shan in An’hui
Shame to say, I’ve only been to Er’mei, which is stunning. Most of these places are very crowded with tourist, but if you opt for hiking up the mountain the same way the monks did years ago, it’s still really beautiful. Jiuhua Shan is close to the Yellow Mountain. There are some lovely villages nearby that’s worth your visit – Crouching Tiger and Hidden Dragon was filmed there – all those bamboo forests.
If you include Tibet on the list, then I have been the holiest of all Mt. Kailash. I hiked around the mountain myself for 2 days. It’s a once in a lifetime experience.