I have about 20 days in China. I was thinking about possibly climbing Tai Shan en route from Beijing to Shanghai. Do you think its worth it? What are your experiences of the mountain?
Skip it,travel from Shanghai and go to Huang Shan in Anhui province instead, there is a saying throughout China that translates as something like 'there's no need to see any other mountains in the country after Huang Shan'. My Chinese co-workers tell me it is the most beautiful place they have seen.
I have been to Huang Shan and it is very beautiful, so if you have the choice do go there. If you go, do try and spend one night at the top, there is so much to see, and some of the scenery is just amazing.
Tai Shan is different, because it has religious significance with many temples etc. I haven't been myself, but there are blogs on this site with information. My opinion is that travelers should try to experience one Chinese mountain, it is certainly very special because the Chinese has this unique relation to their (famous) mountains. Don't expect it to be a solitary experience of nature though, it will be as crowded as High Street on a Saturday.
Although it's said that Huang Shan is the most famous of China's 5 great mountains, Tai Shan's landscape is more charming than Huang Shan.Huang Shan belongs to the Southern part of China mountain tange, and it shows its independent beautiful of Southern style.
Hi Ross, I lived in Tai'an (Taishan) for a year and climbed the mountain 3 times. There are some beautiful places to see. It is a popular thing to climb late in the afternoon and stay overnight to watch the sunrise next day. Although it is the number 1 sacred mountain in China, I had the climbing experience at Huashan (near Xi'an and Terracotta Warriors) It is known as one of the most dangerous/exciting mountains to climb, using harnesses to shimmy around the rock faces. Note that the shimmy part is higher up (there are 5 peaks to this mountain) and you may need to stay up there for a night so that you can fit this in. Or, you can take the cable car to the North Peak and climb further from there to the shimmying point. I have to say that because China is such a huge country, your biggest problem is choosing what to do. Good luck! Here's a pic from Huashan hike to whet your appetite.
[Edited: 2011 Jul 12 22:30 - The Dangling Carrot:125458 - photo caption]
[Edited: 2011 Jul 13 23:33 - phaedrus:19950 ]
What the hell are you all talking about? Taishan, Toi Sun, or Tai Shan? Which is it?
The mountain: Mount Tai, 泰山, Taishan or Tai Shan (it's written many ways), is in Shandong Province. This is on the main train line between Beijing and Shanghai, which may be why Ross was wondering if he should stop there at all.
Ross, if you want to do something a little different in your short time in China, I can tell you this. As a couchsurfing host in Tai'an when I lived there, I met many surfers who were doubtful about stopping in this small-ish town (only 1 million pop). However, once they had achieved the 7851 steps each way, walked through forests of cypress trees 1300 years old, saw the magnificent sunrise, they were very glad they had included it in their itinerary.
The procession of ancient red gates as you enter the path up Tai Shan...pass the steles & rocks carved by emperors...over 7,000 steps to go...definitely worth a visit...you may reach Heaven...but after you are down...fit in a visit to the walled town of Qufu nearby...the home of Confucius.
Yeah, Taishan really worth a visit. I've been there once and deeply fascinated with its distinctive elegant glamour. Labled as " Mountain Number One", Taishan, or Mount Tai is one of the most beautiful and breathtaking mountians in China. As the embodiment of both picturesque precipitous natural scene and supporting body of gorgeous traditional Chinese cultural deposits,Taishan has seized the hearts of myraids of guys both at home and abroad to pay a visit. From my personal experience and humble opinion, it is the most fantastic thing to stay overnight at the top of sun-viewing peak to catch the glimsp of the spectacular sunrise. From the earlist time to the present there are 12 emperors paid the Mount Tai in succession praying for the prosperity of the country. their steps are followed by us ordinary guys to enjoy the grandeur, precipitousness, tranquility and elegance of Taishan. So it really worth a visit to the world cultural and natural heritage.
I have a small question that If I want to climbing Taishan, can I go alone or need to find guides or any travel companies here?
You don't need a guide unless you would like the history and information about certain parts of the walk. It's very difficult to get lost on this trail. The traditional start of the walk is at the north gate of the Dai Temple, follow the street with the mountains in the distance and keep going until you reach the Jade Temple at the top. You can see one of my trips up Taishan on this blog. The Taishan Stairmaster 7851