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Mount Emei Scenic Area, including Leshan Giant Buddha Scenic Area*
UNESCO World Heritage Site

State Party Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg China
Type Cultural and Natural (Mixed)
Criteria iv, vi, x
Reference 779
Region** Asia-Pacific
Inscription history
Inscription 1996  (20th Session)
* Name as inscribed on World Heritage List.
** Region as classified by UNESCO.
Mount Emei
Elevation 3,099 metres (10,167 feet)
Location Sichuan, China
Coordinates 29°31′11″N 103°19′57″E / 29.51972°N 103.3325°E / 29.51972; 103.3325

Template:ZHdot Mount Emei (Chinese: 峨嵋山; ||pinyin]]: Éméi Shān; ||Wade-Giles]]: O2-mei2 Shan1, literally towering Eyebrow Mountain) is a mountain in Sichuan province of Western China. Mount Emei is often written as 峨眉山 and occasionally 峩嵋山 or 峩眉山 but all three are translated as Mount Emei or Mount Emeishan.

At 3,099 m (10,167 ft), Mt. Emei is the highest of the Four Sacred Buddhist Mountains of China.[1] The patron bodhisattva of Emei is Samantabhadra, known in Chinese as Puxian (普贤菩萨). 16th and 17th century sources allude to the practice of martial arts in the monasteries of Mount Emei[2] made the earliest extant reference to the Shaolin Monastery as Chinese boxing's place of origin.[3]

A large surrounding area of countryside is geologically known as the Permian Emeishan Large Igneous Province, a large igneous province generated by the Emeishan Traps volcanic eruptions during the Permian Period.

Mt. Emei was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996.[4]

The Emei Shan Liocichla, a passerine bird is named after the site.

Sunrise and Clouds sea

Great spectacles of Mount Emei include the sunrise and Clouds Sea seen from the Golden Summit of the mountain.

The sunrise is very varied, but optimally begins with the ground and sky being in the same dark purple, soon showing rosy clouds, followed by a bright purple arc and then a semicircle where the sun is coming up.[5]

The Clouds Sea includes several cloud phenomena, e.g. clouds appearing in the sky above, in addition to the regular clouds beneath.[5]


This is the location of the first Buddhist temple built in China in the 1st century CE.[4] The site has seventy-six Buddhist monasteries of the Ming and Qing period, most of them located near the mountain top. The monasteries demonstrate a flexible architectural style that adapts to the landscape. Some, such as the halls of Baoguosi, are built on terraces of varying levels, while others, including the structures of Leiyinsi, are on raised stilts. Here the fixed plans of Buddhist monasteries of earlier periods are modified or ignored in order to made full use of the natural scenery. The buildings of Qingyinge are laid out in an irregular plot on the narrow piece of land between the Black Dragon River and the White Dragon River. The site is large and the winding foot path is 50 km, taking several days to walk.[6]

Cable cars ease the ascent to the two temples at Jinding (3,077 m), an hour's hike from the mountain's peak.[1][7]


Visitors to Mount Emei will likely see dozens of monkeys who can often be viewed taking food from tourists. Local merchants sell nuts for tourists to feed the monkeys. Some monkeys may be seen eating human food such as potato chips and even drinking soda from discarded bottles. While most of the monkeys look healthy, other monkeys appear out of shape from apparently being fed human food that is not native to the monkey's natural habitat.

Images of Mount Emei

Coordinates: 29°31′11″N 103°19′57″E / 29.51972°N 103.3325°E / 29.51972; 103.3325

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 Hayes, Holly (2009) Emei Shan, Sacred Destinations. Updated 24 July 2009.
  2. Zhāng Kǒngzhāo 張孔昭 (in Chinese). Boxing Classic: Essential Boxing Methods 拳經拳法備要 Quánjīng Quánfǎ Bèiyào. 
  3. Henning, Stanley E. (Fall 1999a). "Academia Encounters the Chinese Martial Arts". China Review International 6 (2): 319–332. doi:10.1353/cri.1999.0020. ISSN 1069-5834. .
  4. 4.0 4.1 "Mount Emei Scenic Area, including Leshan Giant Buddha Scenic Area". UNESCO. Retrieved 2007-09-06. 
  5. 5.0 5.1 Dreams Travel - Four Great Spectacles of Mt. Emei Retrieved on April 12, 2009
  6. Dazhang, Sun (2002). Chinese Architecture -- The Qing Dynasty (English ed.). Yale University Press. pp. 328–329. ISBN 0-300-09559-7. 
  7. Gluckman, Ron (2002). Getting to the Top, Silk Road, December 2002. Hong Kong; Dragon Airlines.

External links

Template:World Heritage Sites in China Template:Sacred Mountains of China

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