Huangshan is one of China's top destinations famous for the iconic beauty of Yellow Mountain and idyllic views of Huizhou Villages. From ancient times, swarms of poets and painters sought inspiration from Huangshan. Till now, it is still a big lodestone attracting travelers, artists, shutterbug and especially trekkers.
Obviously Yellow Mountain is a great place to enjoy the featured landscape as well as stretch your legs. However, hiking trails among Huangshan's charming villages is not in the least inferior. You get a wonderful opportunity to exploring Huangshan or old Huizhou by visiting the old villages and following the Huizhou merchant's steps.
We select 4 most recommended hiking routes featuring in different scenery. In these journeys, you can not only enjoy the happiness of hiking, but also explore the fantastic natural landscape and peaceful rural life of the local farmers.
Length: 8.2km (5.1 miles), about 3.5 hours
Highlights: Undisturbed Landscape, Wildlife, Hongcun Village, Xidi VillageXi Hong Ancient Pathway Hiking Map
Xi Hong Ancient Pathway was once was the vital communication line for the trade caravan who came from southwestern Huizhou but wanted to do business in northern area. Now, it becomes the essence of Yixian National Hiking Trails. Starting from Yuanyuang Valley (鸳鸯谷) in Xidi Village and ends in Qishu Lake (奇墅湖) in Hongcun Village, it well connects the two UNESCO World Cultural Heritages Sites. Besides, the scenery is so natural and charming that you may wonder whether you step into a secluded world – no dust, no hissing car and no cellphone signal. The hiking is also quite easy and can be finished by most people.
Yuanyang Valley, the entrance of Xi Hong Ancient Pathway is about 4 kilometers (several minutes' driving) from Xidi Village Scenic Area. As your hiking begins, you will be attracted by the primitive beauty of the valley. In the summer, some families will visit Yuanyang Valley to get a shade from the hot weather. In the dry season, you can clearly see the fishes swimming in the water. When you trek ahead, you will see quite different landscape. The winding streams tree-capped peaks, deep pond, old flagstone walkway, wild plants and various insects like butterfly, dragonfly, etc. will overwhelm your eyes. You could also see some local houses but no people reside there now. Your hiking journey will ends at the picturesque Qishu Lake.
1) Transfer: People usually plan a Xi Hong Ancient Pathway hiking with visit to Hongcun Village and Xidi Village. You are suggested to rent a private car or call a taxi to transfer between Xidi and Yuanyang Valley as well as Qishu Lake and Hongcun Village. It takes about 10 minutes to drive from Xidi Village Scenic Area to Yuyang Valley and about 15 minutes to drive from Qishu Lake to Hongcun Village Scenic Area
2) Best Time: Usually, it is available to trek along Xi Hong Ancient Pathway all the time. But in rainy summer, the simple bridge made of stone stages might be drowned by the water. So trekkers need to wade across the river by bare feet.
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Length: 10km (6.2 miles), about 3 hours
Highlights: Xinan River Landscape, Local Villages, Local Farmers' Life, Rural ViewXinan River Trekking Map
Xin'an River Landscape Gallery, located in Shexian County, is a poetic section of Xian River. Usually, there are two most popular ways to admire the beautiful scenery of Xianan River Landscape, including cruise and hiking. Hiking is a much freer way for you can take stop for sightseeing whenever you want. The hiking route is one part of Xin'an River Landscape Gallery, from Nanyuankou Village (南源口村) to Xiongcun Village (雄村).
It is an easy and enjoyable Hiking. You will take a ferry to the other bank from Nanyuankou Village first and then start your hiking there. During the hiking, you will pass through several local villages to experience the farmers' life and admire the residential houses with traditional Huizhou Architectural style. In the planting season and harvest season, you can see many farmers doing their field production activities. Some plants like the tea bushes, mulberry trees, orchards (loquat and orange) can be seen during your hiking. It is also available to visit the local families' silkworm houses to see the baby silkworms in April. You could also visit the bean curd workshop to see the villagers making tofu.
1) Transfer: During 06:15~18:15, there are 4 shuttle bus lines transferring Shexian. It is available to take a shuttle bus from Shexian County downtown to Nanyuankou Village and from Xiongcun Village to the downtown. The buses depart in every 15 minutes usually. However, there are many stopover stations. If you want a quick transfer, you can choose a private car.
2) Best Time: Hiking along Xinan River in different months permits you to enjoy different views. The best time is in spring when you can admire a large sea of rape flowers (full blossom in March ~ April ). Autumn is also a good time to have a hiking along Xinan River Landscape because the rice in the paddy fields are ripe and you can see the farmers enjoy their harvest and reap their rice in the fields.
Length: 7.2km (4.5 miles), about 3 hours
Highlights: Lingshan Village, Chengkan Village, Natural Landscape, Local Farmers' LifeTongling Ancient Pathway Trekking Route Map
Tongling Ancient Pathway is located in Huizhou District of Huangshan City, extending from Shuyuan Village (蜀源村) in north and Chengkan Village (呈坎村) in east to Lingshan Village (灵山村). Built in Ming Dynasty (1368~1644), it used to be a main route for Huizhou merchants to go out for business traffic. This road was mainly made of granite slabs and gravel. Connecting three old villages together, you have a lot things to do during your about 3 hours' hiking experience.
You are suggested to start your trekking from Shuyuan Village to Chengkan Village. On your hiking journey, you will take a wonderful view of idyllic scenery and get a better understanding of profound Huizhou culture and long history. There are over 40 old Huizhou-style buildings with white walls and gray tiles along the road. You can see many families still live there and retain their old life style. Moreover, it is available to enjoy the amazing nature by passing by hills, trickling streams, green woodland and bamboo forest. Visiting peaceful Lingshan Village and mysterious Chengkan Village will make you trip more interesting.
Lingshan Village: Surrounded by green hills and bamboo forest, Lingshan Village is a peaceful village featuring in outlet buildings. The pavilions, bridges, archways are all ancestral halls are well-proportioned. The villagers have a deep relationship with the bamboo and many of them can make bamboo wares. So you can appreciate their traditional folk arts and crafts made of bamboos.
Chengkan Village: Chengkan Village is the famous Eight Diagram Village built in accordance with traditional Chinese Fenghui theory. It enjoys a long history of about 2,000 years. Because of its outstanding architectures of both in quantity and quality, it is honored as the Museum of Chinese Ancient Architecture art. Here you can appreciate its exquisite layout and a large number of elaborately built Hui-style architectures, some of which are national treasures.
Length: 16km (10 miles), about 6 hours / 2 days
Highlights:Natural Beauty, Peaceful AtmosphereHuihang Ancient Pathway Trekking Map
Hui Hang Caravan Trail was a caravan trail to transport tea from Huizhou for grain exchange in Hangzhou in old times. Firstly constructed in Tang Dynasty, Hui Hang Caravan Trail is said to be the third famous ancient road only after Silk Road and Tea-Horse Trading Route. Instead of previous road via Yuling Pass, Hui Hang Caravan shortened the walking distance between Huizhou and Hangzhou approximately 50km (31 miles). The preserved Hui Hang Caravan Trail, also the highlights of the whole Hui Hang Caravan Trail, extends from Fuling Town, Jixi County, Xuancheng City (宣城绩溪县伏岭镇) to Zhejitian Village, Lingan District, Hangzhou (浙江省杭州市临安区清凉峰镇浙基田村). The trekking rail is only about 16 kilometers long but rather rugged, so it is recommended to spend 2 days completing the trekking.
On first day's trekking, the road always traverses the hillside of the valley. Both sides are dense mountains and breathtaking cliffs. After you walk the road made of narrow and steep stone steps, you will get to Huangmaopei (黄茅培) where you can have some simple meals and drinks. Crossing through the bamboo forest, there is the flat muddy road. There are some small pieces of fields grown with vegetables. Late in the afternoon, you will arrive in a village hidden in the high mountains. You can take a rest in the local gust house and enjoy a simple but healthy countryside meal. Accommodating there allows you to experience the tranquility of the valley and have a peaceful night with the primitive nature. The second's trekking is a little tough but you will be rewarded more splendid landscape. Climbing to Lantianao (蓝天凹) – the highest point of Hui Hang Caravan Trail delivers a fantastic view of extensive grassland, undulating mountains and azure sky. Then get down through a forest and walk to terminus of the trekking.
Transfer: The public transportation of Huangshan City to the entrance of Hui Hang Caravan Trail and exit to Huangshan City are rather complicated. Using a private car will make your journey much more convenient and comfortable.
For qualified trekkers, hiking among Huangshan Villages is not enough. If you need a more challenging trekking, Huangshan Mountain waits. Huangshan Mountain, also known as Yellow Mountain, is attractive with it four wonders - beautifully-shaped pines trees, fantastic rock peaks, sea of clouds and hot springs. Trekking is a physically demanding but eyes-rewarding way to travel Yellow Mountain. There are three most popular trekking routes in Yellow Mountain to enjoy different spectacular scenery in Front Mountain, Back Mountain and West Grand Canyon. Front Mountain features in magnificent peaks and far-reaching views while Back Mountain is famous for idyllic scenery of smaller peaks and shapely pine trees, and West Grand Canyon is known for the thrilling stone steps and interesting rock formations. The trekking routes on Yellow Mountain can be tailor-made according to your energy, interest and trekking time. Learn more about Yellow Mountain Trekking Routes.
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China Discovery has helped lot of overseas travelers finish their Huangshan tours with trekking experience. We offer customers private cars with skilled drivers, so there is no need to worry about transportation. Our local travel guides are knowledgeable of trekking routes and Huizhou culture. With their help, you won't miss the highlights on your trekking. With good relationship with the villagers in some local villages, we can take you to get a close sight of the local life.
Want to plan a worry-free trekking experience in Huangshan now? Don't hesitate to contact our professional travel guide. You are also warmly welcomed to contact us and customize your Huangshan tour in your own style.
Wearing: Some sections of the trekking trail might be wet muddy road, so you are suggested to prepare a pair of waterproof sturdy shoes to make your hiking much easier. Warm, comfortable and firm clothing is helpful to protect you from cold and wind in winter.
Food and Drinks: Except for on Hui Hang Caravan Trail, there are seldom food and drinks in sale on the road. You need to bring some snacks and food for supplement.
Trekking with a Guide: There are road signs marking the direction to the right to your trekking destination usually, but some signs are too blurred to distinguish. You'd better be accompanied by an experienced partner or a local guide.
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