Mount E'mei, located in E'mei City more than 140 km southwest of chengdu ,Sichuan ,is about 3 100 m above sea level. For its majesty and beauty, Mt.E'mei is reputed as "the most beautiful mountain under heaven". As the famous senic spot and the Buddhist mountain in China. Mt.Emei has inscribed in the World Natural Heritage List by UNESCO.
Mt.E'mei is one of the four sacred Buddhist mountains in China. The other three are the Wutai Mountain in Shanxi, the Putuo Mountain in Zhejiang and the Jiuhua Mountain in Anhui. As Buddhism flourished in China in the second century, more and more temples were built on Mt.E'mei. In the sixth century, it became a national Buddhist sanctuary. Over the past century, every year pilgrims have been visiting the mountain for their worship. The famous Baoguo Monastery, the Fuhu Monastery, the Qingyin Pavilion, the Xixiang Monastery and so on locate on the sheer cliffs or lovely valleys while the Woyun Nunnery sits on the peak of the mountain ("the Golden Summit").
It is said that Mt.E'mei used to be the area where Samantabhadra, one of the disciples of Sakyamuni, practicing religious rites. Therefore, the temples on the mountain mainly serve to worship Samantabhadra. In the Wannian Monastery, there is a giant bronze statue of Samantabhadra riding on a white elephant. Many historical and religious treasures such as scriptures, relics, calligraphy and paintings, tablets and inscribed boards are preserved in the temples here.
In addition to its attraction as a Buddhist sanctuary, Mt.E'mei is worth visiting for its natural beauty. Here can be found precipitous cliffs, clear wells and springs, crystal water and falls, spectacular caves, virgin forests, beautiful sunrise and sunset, precious species of plants and animals, Buddha light, seas of clouds, and mischievous monkeys. The major scenic goal of Chinese hikers is to witness a sunrise or sunset over the sea of clouds at the summit. On the rare afternoon there is also a phenomenon known as Buddha's Aureole where rainbow rings, produced by refraction of water particles, attach themselves to a person's shadow in a cloud bank below the summit. So far as wildlife is concerned, Mt.E'mei is a rich natural museum. Here exists some 3 000 species of plants including precious dove trees and firs, and more than 60 varieties of azalea. The rare animals found here include lesser pandas, silver pheasants, faded-leaf butterflies and bearded frogs. What is the most attractive is the monkey. They come and go on the winding corridors of the temples or on the small paths in the woods near the Jiulao Caves and the Xixiang Monastery. The monkeys chase each other, beg for food from passers-by and play with them. To be true, it is one of the impressive experiences for tourists to Mt.E'mei.
Nation-dedicating Temple (Baoguosi)
The Nation-dedicating Temple is the first temple one meets along the mountain way and stresses love and patriotism. It was built in the 16th century, enlarged in the 17th century by Emperor Kangxi and recently renovated. Its 3.5-meter porcelain Buddha, made in 1415, is housed near the Sutra Library. To the left of the gate is a rockery for potted miniature trees and rare plants. The first hall here is the Laughing Buddha Hall dedicated to the Laughing Buddha. Stepping out of the first hall, tourists can find the Great Hero Hall dedicated to Sakyamuni, sitting on a lotus flower. On both sides of the hall, there are 18 arhats. Following from the hall, is the Seven Buddhas Hall. The seven Buddhas, molded in gold and each 20 meters high, sit cross-legged on a blue-brick-base. The last hall in the temple is the Hall of Universal Benevolence God. The hall has two stories. The first story is dedicated to the god of Universal Benevolence, and the second floor contains the depository for Buddhist doctrines. Besides the four main halls, there are several pavilions, platforms and guestrooms within the temple. The temple has the typical structure of Chinese ancient garden covers an area of more than 10 acres. Every yard of the temple is quite different from another by its unique and wonderful landscape with a nearby forest enhancing a sense of tranquility.
"Crouching Tiger Monastery", as it is known in Chinese, is sunk in the forest. Inside is a seven-meter-high copper pagoda inscribed with Buddhist images and texts.
Reconstructed in the 9th century, the Temple of 10000 Years is the oldest surviving E’mei monastery. It’s dedicated to the man on the white elephant, the Bodhisattva Puxian, who is the protector of the mountain. This statue, 8.5 meters high, cast in copper and bronze, weighing an estimated 62,000kg, is found in Brick Hall, a domed building with small stupas on it. The statue was made in 980AD.
Named the Pure Sound Pavilion because of the sound effects produced by rapid waters flapping around rock formations in the area, the temple itself is built on an outcrop in the middle of a fast-flowing stream. There are small pavilions from which to observe the waterworks and appreciate the natural music.
According to legend, the Elephant Bathing Pool is the spot where Puxian flew his elephant in for a big scrub, but there's not much of a pool to speak of today. If very lucky, you'll meet some monkeys here. The monkeys have got it all figured out-Xixiang Pond is the place to be. If you come across a monkey "tollgate", the standard procedure is to thrust open palms towards the outlaw to show you have no food.
Golden Summit Temple
At 3077 meters, the magnificent Golden Summit Temple is as far as most hikers make it. It has been entirely rebuilt since being gutted by a fire several years ago. Covered with glazed tile and surrounded by white marble balustrades, it now occupies 1695 sq meters. The original temple had a bronze-coated roof, which is how it got the name Jinding (which can mean "Gold Top" as well as "Golden Summit").
Emeishan Travel Guide