Mt Emei is one of the four sacred Buddhist mountains in China. It is in the Sichuan Province and a UNESCO world heritage site. We stayed at the Buddhist Baoguo temple for one night. We arrived late in the day while there were still visitors but when everyone left we had the place to ourselves. The accommodation was basic: simple rooms, squat toilets and outdoor showers, but it was incredible being up on the mountain with big open skies, total darkness and just the sound of insects. The smell of incense and candles still in the air. We went out for a simple dinner and had an early night. I walked around quietly to see the buddha statues and candles still lit up without anyone else around before bed. I could hear and see through tiny gaps, the monks chanting their night time prayers.
I woke up at 5am to the sound of the monks prayers, drums and bells. It was a beautiful sound. We had fried egg and banana sandwiches for breakfast and set off with a packed lunch for a day of hiking. It was humid and we climbed a lot of stairs from one monastery to the next. Every pore on my body sweated with every step. But it was beautiful. There were peaks, springs, waterfalls, tall ancient trees and abundant flowers. Butterflies, birds, beetles and a snake. Chickens wandering about and people selling handmade goods all the way. We were mostly in amongst trees but every now and then they opened up to a breathtaking view. We went out for dinner, I took a last walk around the quiet monastery and then crashed. A wonderful experience I won’t forget.
Last Stop: Chengdu
Next Stop: Lijiang