Hiking Taishan

One of the most sacred mountains in China, Taishan has more recently become a tourist hotspot - attracting visitors from all over China and abroad. I made the last minute decision to move on from the rather expensive city of Chengde and took an overnight train to Taishan, which even has its own train station. … Continue reading Hiking Taishan

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Pule Temple

This lovely temple sits at the base of the Sledgehammer Peak Scenic Area, and is a lovely quiet spot off the main tourist track in Chengde. Built in 1766, the temple consists of two parts - the first a Han style courtyard and hall, while the rear of the temple was modelled after the Hall … Continue reading Pule Temple

Xumi Fushouzhi Temple (Temple of Sumeru Happiness and Longevity

Built in 1780 for the Panchen Lama (from Tibet), this temple combines Han, Tibetan and Mongolian features. It was intended as an imitation of the Tashihunpo Temple in Tibet, from where the Panchen Lama was coming from to visit Chengde for the Qianlong Emperor's 45th birthday. After walking through the entrance gate and past a … Continue reading Xumi Fushouzhi Temple (Temple of Sumeru Happiness and Longevity

Potalaka (Putuozongcheng) Temple

Built in 1771 AD, the Potalaka Temple is the largest of the eight outer temples of Chengde. It was intended as an imitation of the Potala Palace in Tibet, aiming to impress visiting Tibetans in order to encourage greater unification of the further regions China and appease minority groups. I really enjoyed the style of … Continue reading Potalaka (Putuozongcheng) Temple

Pingyao Ancient Town

Around a days travel by train from Beijing (via Taiyuan, which I visited previously), Pingyao is a fantastically well preserved ancient walled town and well worth a visit. While the town is full of small sights and temples, actually the main attraction is just exploring and getting lost among its narrow streets. With that in … Continue reading Pingyao Ancient Town

Lama Temple

Apparently the centre of Tibetan Buddhism in Beijing, the Lama Temple is a popular tourist sight and one that's been on my to-visit list for years.Inside, we passed through several temple halls and courtyards, each with the usual incense burners and Buddhas.There were also Chinese style bell and drum towers.Inside, the Buddhas were particularly golden … Continue reading Lama Temple

Terelj National Park and Ariabal Monastery

The Terelj National Park is one of the most popular in Mongolia, famous for its rock formations and beautiful landscapes. I started the day wandering around the ger camp where we had just spent the night, soaking in the atmosphere and enjoying the scene. Next, we headed out to explore, starting with the famous Turtle … Continue reading Terelj National Park and Ariabal Monastery