When speaking of Nanjing, people always think of the Sun Yat-sen Mausoleum, or Qinhuai River. Nanjing was known to the world as the capital of Republic of China and also a traditional ancient city through many dynasties. Besides the well known attractions, QixiaMountain is a special choice, especially in autumn. The maple leafs there are the best view of the city.
After September ends, Nanjing, or the south Yangtze River Region starts to enter the fall. Nanjing is a city with hills and mountains surrounding. QinhuaiRiver, XuanwuLake, and the mountains form a fabulous and attractive image of the city. Starting from November, it is time to visit the Qixia Mountain which offers plenty of maple trees in colorful scroll.
Known as the No.1 delicate mountain of Nanjing, Qixia mountain has also been the Buddhism site since South Dynasty from history. In fall, the red and yellow maple leafs, along with the temples, make a picturesque view, as nice as its name.
QixiaMountain is located 22 km northeast of Nanjing city. It has another name of “SheMountain”. In South Dynasty, there was a Qixia Boutique Residence in the mountain. So the name of the mountain came from the residence. The whole mountain consists of three hills and two falls. The main hill is called Sanmao with an altitude of 286 meters. The hill on the northeast looks like a lying dragon, it is called Dragon. The northwest one looks like a tiger, so it is TigerMountain. There are too many tourist attractions on QixiaMountain. Since South Dynasty, it has been the Buddhism site. QixiaTemple is seen as the top among all the sites. QixiaMountain is certainly more famous for its deep red maple leafs. In 2000, the Dongfeitian Grotto was discovered and it soon became a tourist attraction.
Actually the altitude of QixiaMountain is not very high. It is not as steep as ZhongMountain. But it is quieter and more attractive with scenery. The cultural relics spread everywhere on the mountain. Especially in fall, the golden maple leafs make the mountain another wonderland. It is seen as the best place to appreciate the beauty of fall in Nanjing by local people.
QixiaTemple, the main attraction, is the largest Buddha temple in Nanjing, now there are Shanmen, Tianwang Hall, and Bilu Hall, Depositary of Buddhist Sutra, Jianzhen Memorial Hall and other buildings. QixiaTemple is located in west of the middle mountain. In Tang Dynasty, it is called VirtueTemple. There were more than 40 temples being built. It was then one of the four big temples in mountains. In Qing Dynasty, the temple was ruined by fire and then it was reconstructed. Currently it remains the largest temple in Nanjing.
The No. attraction of Qixia Scenic Are is MirrorLake; it is located at the west gate of QixiaTemple. Built in Qing Dynasty, there is a pavilion at the center of lake and a ZigzagBridge connecting with the land. The Dongfeitian Grotto is one of the 102 niches. The niche is very small with 5 Buddha statues. It is known as the most east Dunhuang Grotto relics. The Buddhist Relics Pagoda was built 1400 years ago, it was originally a wood pagoda and it was ruined in Tang Dynasty. The current pagoda was built by Gaoyue and Lin Renzhao in South Dynasty. The pagoda is built in white stone with five floors and eight sides. There are cameos on the exospores which are very vivid. The stories of Sakyamuni and other Buddhism stories were engraved on the pagoda base.