Wudang Mountain, also named Taihe Mountain and Canshang Mountain, stretches for 800 miles of spectacular scenery with secluded valleys and picturesque peaks. There are about 72 peaks, about 24 streams, about 11 caves, pools, and ponds. The main peak is called Tianzhu Peak and has an elevation of 1,612 meters. The other peaks surround it and the peaks and streams are a special sight.
Wudang Mountain is renowned for its magnificent architecture. The whole group of buildings exemplifies the Taoist ideal of "Zhenwu Training to be Immortal" with imperial architectural design laid out to match the surrounding landforms. Some buildings are built on the peaks of the high mountains, some are between cliffs and in valleys, and some are in forests in harmony with nature. In China, it is thought of as a place that exhibits the achievement of ancient Chinese architecture. In 1994, the ancient architecture group on Wudang Mountain was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Wudang Moutain's Major Attractions
Xuanyue Gate is the common name for "Zhishi Xuanyue" Memorial Arch. It is a chiseled stone building with three rooms, four pillars and five floors. It was built in the 31st year of the Jiajing Period in the Ming Dynasty (1552 AD). It is 12 meters high and 12.8 meters wide. Four Chinese characters “Zhishi Xunyue” (Govern the World, Profound Name治世玄岳) that were written by Emperor Jiajing are carved on a tablet.
Its full name is "Xuantian Yuxu Palace". It was the biggest building complex on Wudang Mountain. It was built in the 11th year of the Yongle Period in the Ming Dynasty (1413 AD) and renovated in the 31st year of the Jiajing Period (1552). The complex was built with 2,200 temples or rooms. Most of them were damaged in the 10th year of the Qianlong Period in the Qing Dynasty (1745 AD), so now there are four.
Mozhen Jing Palace
It is also named "Chunyang Palace". It's 12 kilometers south of Laoying. The palace was first built during the Yongle Period in the Ming Dynasty. The existing Mozhen Jing Palace was rebuilt in the 2nd year of the Xianfeng Period in the Qing Dynasty (1852 AD). In the 1984, it was renovated to be almost the same as before. There are over 50 rooms and a surface area of 1,700 square meters.
Taizi Po Palace
It was built in the 10th year of the Yongle Period in the Ming Dynasty (1412 AD). It is also called "Fuzhen Guan". It was renovated in the 1st year (1662 A.D), 23rd year, and the 29th year of the Kangxi Period in the Qing Dynasty. It is now smaller than it used to be, but it is still one of the larger building complexes.
South Rock Palace (Nanyan in Chinese)
It is said to be the "Taoist sacred ground" where Zhenwu attained the way to fly and be immortal. People say that this South Rock Palace area has the best scenery. It was renovated in the 11th year of the Yongle Period in the Ming Dynasty (1413 AD). There are about 150 buildings such as palaces, housing for Taoists, temples and pavilions. It has a tablet with the words “Dasheng Nanyan Palace.” In the 31st year of the Jiajing Period (1552 AD), the palace was enlarged. There were once 460 rooms. Stone Palace, Nantian Gate, Stele Pavilion and Liangyi Palace still exist.
Qiongtai Guan Palace
It is southeast of Tianzhu peak and about ten kilometers from it. It is at an elevation of 1,350 meters, and it has upper, middle and lower sections. It was called "Qiongtai Palace" in the Yuan Dynasty. Then during the Ming and Qing dynasties, it was renovated and enlarged for 24 Tao sanctuaries and hundreds of temple rooms. It was destroyed in the war of the 6th year of the Xianfeng Period in the Qing Dynasty (1856 AD). Some of the temple rooms have been restored. It is the starting point for a cable way for the Wudang Mountain Scenic Area, so it has become a tourist tranport center.
Built in the 11th year of the Yongle Period in the Ming Dynasty (AD 1413), it originally had more than 860 palaces, porticoes and pavilions. There is a tablet with the words "Taiyuan Zixiao Palace". Zixiao Palace backs against Zhanqi Peak and faces Zhaobi, Santai, Wulao, Lazhu, Luomao and Xianglu peaks. Leishen Cave, Yuji Pool and Baozhu Peak are on either side. The title, "Zixiao Merry Land", was conferred on the area by Emperor Yongle of the Ming Dynasty.
Golden Palace (Jin Palace)
This nationally protected site is at the top of Tianzhu Peak at an elevation of 1612 meters. The Golden Palace was built in the 14th year of the Yongle Period in the Ming Dynasty (1416 AD). Inside there are three edifices that are 5.54 meters high, 4.4 meters long and 3.15 meters wide. All of them are built with gilded bronze. It is said to be a world masterpiece of copper architecture.
Wulong Palace (Wulong means Five Dragons)
Wulong Palace is beneath the Lingying Mountain peak. During the Zhenguan Period in the Tang Dynasty (627-649), "Wulong Ancestral Hall" was built by imperial order. In the 10th year of Yongle Period in the Ming Dynasty (1412), about 215 temples, mountain gates and other buildings were built. There were about 850 rooms or buildings in the complex, but in 1930 this temple was also destroyed by fire. There are many relics and remains.
- Address: It is in the eastern side of Daba Mountain and is a part of Danjiangkou City in the northwestern area of Hubei Province.
- Special Distinction: It is a famous Taoist area, and is one of China's best national park areas, and is considered a world cultural heritage.
Questions and Answers About Mount Wudang
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I updated this article on July 18, 2012
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