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Yandangshan Mountain
11/14/2008 12:03:29 AM    Author : ANDY    Browse : 793

Zhejiang Province, on the coast, 80km (116 miles) N of Wenzhou, 378km (233 miles) SW of Hangzhou, 470km (292 miles) S of Shanghai

Although most Chinese have heard of these famous religious peaks, very few have actually been here. Subsequently, although as impressive as its counterparts, it is far less commercialized than the Five Sacred Mountains, with lower ticket prices, better-value hotels, and few rip-offs. Yandang Mountain was named a World Geopark by UNESCO in 2005.

Named after the flocks of wild geese that gather in the marshes around the lake at the top of the mountain, Yandang Mountains are situated in the southeast of Zhejiang Province. This is the largest among the 44 key scenic resorts of the country, covering an area of 450 sq. km (176 sq. miles). The mountain range was formed 120 million years ago, and belongs to a complete and typical rhyolitic paleovolcano dating from the Cretaceous Period of the Mesozoic Era, in the edge of the volcanic belt of Asia surrounding the Pacific Ocean. The belt is older than the Andes and the western part of the United States.

Master Xu Xiake, renowned monk/geographer, visited Yandangshan twice and it became widely known during the Song dynasty (960-1279). He wrote that "to fully appreciate the beauty of Yandangshan, you would have to be a flying spirit!"

The mountain used to be serene with various natural brooks. However, excessive extraction of groundwater has drained many of the those.

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