Lianyungang, not just the birthplace of the Monkey King

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During this Lianyungang trip, we spent several hours in the so-called "Eurasian Continental Bridge bridgehead" coastal city. We directly go to Haizou from the airport, where there is a scenic area known as “Taohuajian”, despite the peach blossom had just withered, but we did not regret coming here because our goal was the “general rock paintings” in the area.

It is said that there were original a group of human and horse rock paintings here, so named. The whole area is more than forty meters long, and twenty meters wide, with flat, bright and mix color of granite, as well as marine erosion traces, perhaps it was a vast sea long time ago.

In the south part of the rock, there are three groups of rock paintings on the surface of the rock, chiseled with rough human faces, animals, nebula and other patterns. These rock paintings were discovered in 1979, and it was said that the lines were very clear at that time, but now, after thirty years,they has become blurred in some places. The rock paintings are in unique pictographic art, showing a clear original style, all the characters on the rock are carved with hatching lines, some lines are carelessly straight, some have pointed dome ornaments, some of textured headdress, the faces are engraved with the messy lines, independent parts are relatively brief, and mostly without limbs and body. Compared to the other rock paintings with complete body and limbs found elsewhere, rock paintings here are more original. There are even seedlings crops patterns on the rock paintings, it is indeed a rare and important discovery.

What’s more, there are some stones on the hillside, one of them has many round artificial fossas on th surface. According analysis from the rock paintings, stones and the landform here,there should be a primitive religious worship place here. Experted by the State Bureau of Cultural Relics, these relics came into being 4000 years ago, is oldest rock art ever found in China. Described as "a very important heritage, a rare major discovery, the earliest bible in China" by the State Administration of Cultural Heritage. 

Came out from the “general rock paintings” and in the direction to the urban areas, there is a Kongwangshan Mountain, under which there are stone statues in late East Han Dynasty. Statues are carved on the cliff, a total of more than one hundred, the maximum one is more than half of a meter, while the smallest one is only ten centimeters.

The content of the statues can be summarized in three types: firstly, the content of Buddhism, the Buddha, Bodhisattva, disciple,and strong man and so on. Secondly, the content of Taoism, mainly convey the image of Taoist worship. Thirdly, the secular content, such as the common "feast" of Han Dynasty. Group of statues are carved with single line, flat-line, bas-relief and high relief in simple style.

In less than 200 meters away from the Cliff there is a stone eleghant, carved with a complete natural stone, nearly three meters high, five meters long and weighs more than two hundred tons, has been here for almost 2000 years. Cultural researchers have accidentally discovered there are inscription on the left foreleg, reads "Yongping April 1994 Fragrance" with the official script chirography. 

As an important part of the East China Sea Temple, the stone status on Kongwangshan Mount should clearly recorded the life scenes, faith, and the hope to go to the Western Paradise of Liujiang, an officer in the past time. There is also an age-old stone frog and several carved cliffs in the sceneic area, the Kongwangshan Mountain is not very high, there is also a statue of Confucius and his disciples on the Peak, but unfortunately we did not have time to climb the mountain and drove directly to the Yuntaishan Mountain.

There is a Haiqing Temple under Yuntaishan Mountain, which was built in recent years, but hight tower in front of the temple was built during the Northern Song Dynasty.

The 8.5 earthquake occurred in Kangxi years(1688) had destroyed many houses, but surprisingly, this tower stayed on. There are several monks come from Taiwan in Haiqing Temple, without the general business feeling.

Although Haiqing Temple is a new one, but there are many precious Ming and Qing statues displaying at the two sides of the gallery, the most notable one is the eighteen arhat(we really had not seen before!)

Yuntaishan Mountain is in the back of Haiqing Temple, now also called Huaguoshan as its common name. Not allowed into the mountains by car, we had to switch to the expensive GMB in the scenic area, but we just went to one in the middle of the famous Water Curtain Cave, that is the base area for the monkey jumped out from the stone in novel.

The main peak is the Lady Summit, six hundred and twenty meters above sea level, although the altitude is not high, but it is the highest peak in Jiangsu Province. On the peak, breeze, some rugged rocks and cliffs, but also a group of chattering monkeys, the landscape is rather good.

There is a unique bamboo on Huaguoshan Mountain, with very strong ability of enduring cold, called "Jin Xiang Yu-chu" in Chinese.

Mountain of Flowers and Fruits

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