Before taking the bus to Hengshan West station, I visited Nanyue Temple.
Nanyue is a large, and very popular, Taoist and Buddhist temple. It is opposite the entrance to Hengshan scenic route.
In China, tortoises are a symbol of longevity, wisdom and peace. It is also one of the 4 sacred animals, representing the North and winter.
In Taoism, the tortoise supports the weight of Heaven. Its shell represents the Heaven whilst the underside is Earth. It is therefore the animal that has supported the universe since the beginning of the creation.
The children were very excited by the turtles swimming around. (Turtles have shorter lifespans and therefore don’t represent longevity)
All the shops, restaurants and hotels were selling incense in Hengshan.
Hunan region is known for its spicy food.
The hotel lady kindly gave me a red date yoghurt as a parting gift, which I treated myself to on the bus.
Lituo bus station:
A statue of Mao decorates the security check point.
I took a small snack whilst waiting for the bus.
There aren’t any alternatives other than taking the bus if leaving in the afternoon from Changsha. For some reasons the trains only leave in the morning or in the evening, which is a shame as the bus’ A/C wasn’t working great in the 30+°C heat.
After 4 hours of sitting in a bus full of increasingly upset Chinese people (The bus was running 1 hour late), I finally started to see mountains.
Sunset view through the dirty bus window:
I eventually arrived at Zhangjiajie.
Speed walking across the bridge to the hotel.
There was a mishap in the booking (ie. They completely forgot about me) so my plans changed and I ended up in a slightly more spacious (and more expensive) room then planned.
I noticed this ice cream place on the way to the hotel. I wasn’t really sure what I was ordering and instead of ice cream, I ended up with bubble tea. 😅
The smell of this small restaurant attracted me. I pointed at the picture of fried food cuz that was something I thought I could handle easily but then I got served the ramen that was in the picture next to it.
Another chopstick challenge! (Super cheap though, 13 yuan)
There was pretty much everything in there. Slices of tomato, mushrooms, tofu skin (maybe), sausage, cabbage, chilli, egg…