Wudang Mountain Travel Guide
Wudang Mountain, one of the most famous Taoism holy land, south to Shennongjia primitive forest, north to Danjiangkou Reservoir, locates in Danjiangkou, Shiyan City, Hubei Province. Wudang Mountain was listed as World’s Cultural Heritage by UNESCO, China National Scenic Area, the origin of Taoism and Wudang Boxing, reputed as everlasting fairy mountain. Ancient emperors praised Taoism in Wudang Mountain and reached a peak in Ming Dynasty. Emperor Yongle, the third emperor of Ming Dynasty, ordered the construction the Forbidden City in Beijing, and repaired temples on Wudang Mountain in the south. So, Wudang Mountain was regarded as imperial Taoism Mountain. In late Ming Dynasty, Taoist Sanfeng Zhang combined all of his acknowledge and practice to create Wudang Martial Arts.
Wudang Mountain consists of 72 hills, 36 rocks, 11 caves, 3 ponds, 9 springs, 10 pools, 9 wells, 10 stones, and 9 pavilions, highlights in Heavenly Pillar Peak Area (Tianzhu Peak), which includes Eighteen Bends, sightseeing of 72 peaks pointing to the Golden Summit, temples’ foldover, etc. It was estimated there were more than 500 temples and 20000 rooms on the mountain in Tang Dynasty. At present, we still can see well-preserved ancient buildings of 129 sections, chambers of 1182, exhibiting like a display on Chinese ancient architecture complex. Except for the old buildings, Wudang Mountain owns over 7400 pieces precious relics, especially Taoism relics.
Going up to the mountain, visitors can hike from the bottom to the Golden Summit. Enter the entrance, here comes to Yuxu Palace on the right, Xuanyue Gate and Yuzhen Palace on the left. Going up from the famous line there are Huilong Temple, Needle Grinding Well, Taishang Rock, Laojun Hall, Taizi Slope, and then to the Xiaoyao Valley. The next area comes to Zixiao Palace, Nanyan Palace, Yellow Dragon Cave, three sky gates, and last to the Golden Summit.
Xiaoyao Valley, the Macaque Valley, has all kinds of animals in the jungle. Sometimes, visitors may see the monkeys jumping into the river, picking up peaches, even asking visitors for food.
Nanyan Palace is one of the most important Taoist palaces on Wudang Mountain. Since the building of this palace in the 13th century, there had been some Taoist practicing in the palace. The palace is under the Duyang Rock, has existing two buildings and some well-preserved attractions, such as Tianyi Zhenqinggong Zhidian, Liangyi Palace, Guangjing Hall, Bafeng Pavilion, Dragon-Tiger Pavilion, Dabei Pavilion, and South Heavenly Gate.
Zixiao Palace, means Purple Cloud, a well-preserved ancient building complex, was built in 1413, under the Heavenly Pillar Peak, Wudang’s main peak. It’s the largest complex of the Wudang buildings, consisting total 29 buildings with an area of 6854 square meters. From the bottom of the compound, there are 860 buildings of different shapes of palaces, verandas, abstinence halls, pavilions, terraces, and towers.
Taizi Slope, means Prince Slope in Chinese, has another name of Fuzhen Temple. The temple was built on the Lion Peak, which is a steep slope in ninety degrees. So, the ancient buildings on the slope were considered as the classic masterpiece among the construction in the steep slope. The attractions are Huilong Temple, Chuan Yang Palace, Laojun Hall, Baxian Temple. The complex is large but stands for a long line along the road. So, transportation is convenient.
Golden Summit, standing on Heavenly Pillar Peak, is the highlight and symbol of Wudang Mountain. Looking distance from the summit in beautiful weather, panoramic landscape of Wudang Mountain is all in sight. The scenic spot of Golden Summit has Middle Temple, Yellow Dragon Cave, Chaotian Temple, three gates to Heaven, Taihe Palace, ancient bronze palaces, and so on. These ancient buildings are precious architecture in China history, witnesses the brilliant foundry technology and the wisdom of Chinese people.