On the September 3rd long holiday weekend commemorating the “70th anniversary celebrating the end of Second World War”, I planned a trip to Huangshan.
On the first night, a visit on Tunxi street is a must. Although it is a cliche of tourist street set in the location of Huangshan, there is still the unique tea shops selling Huang Shan Mao Feng tea and freshly made pickled vegetables and chili. But, if we are to compare apple to apple, it is not a whole lot different from Hangzhou and it’s Longjing teashops.
Celebrated as one of the five must-see mountains in China, Huangshan is claimed as the #1 mountain site to visit as well as, a UNESCO site. As with most culturally significant destinations in China, traveling during public holidays can be a nightmare. With the one-week October National Day holiday in a month, I thought the three-day holiday weekend would be as peaceful as my Dragon Boat holiday trip to Lijiang. Boy, was I wrong. There was a 5 hour queue to ride in the cable car that will take us to the top of the mountain and, another 5 hour cable car queue to get off the mountain, There were people standing in all directions trying to cut the queue and tempers were fiery.
The forecast on the day we visited Huangshan was not in our favor. There were light rains and heavily overcast skies. The main view I managed to enjoy were the clouds, not the scenery. In spite of it all, Huangshan is a beautiful beast. Lucky, my hotel took care of me and arranged all my transportation for my site seeing as well as, in room foot massage that coming back to the hotel every evening turned into a real treat.
Near Huangshan there is an ancient village of Hong Cun, also a designated UNESCO site famous for it’s Ming dynasty and Qing dynasty architecture. Key principle scenes from the movie, “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” was filmed here. It’s picturesque scenery attracted art school students for live-drawing exercises.
An hours drive away from Huangshan is Emerald Valley. It boasts Emerald green waters and is also one of the locations where they filmed “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon”. It is quiet and void of tourists. The beauty of Huangshan can be seen in the background and the sounds of the running waterfalls bring peace to the area.
Tunxi Old Street