My Trip to TaishanVisiting Dai Temple
After taking a shower, drinking a bottle of water and smoking a cigarette, I begin my trip in Tai'an July 11, 2008. My first highlight is Dai Temple. It is located in the city center. It was the place where the ancient emperors came here to worship the god of Mt. Taishan. It was first built in Han Dynasty, then expanded in Ming and Qing dynasties.
The main building is Tiankuang Hall, one of the three most famous halls in China, the other two are Dacheng Hall in the Confucius Temple in Qufu, the hall of Supreme harmony in the Forbidden City in Beijing. It was built in a palace-style with eight gates. 4 corner towers and numerous halls.
The entrance to Dai Temple
Tiankuang Hall of Confucius Temple
Tiankuang Hall in Song Dynasty
Exploring the red gate ( Hongmen )
I decide to climb Mt. Taishan next day. But I have no idea how to get to the summit of the mountain. There are four routes to the summit of Mt. Taishan. The most popular routes are Middle Route and West Route. The middle route starts from the Honmen ( Red Gate ) at the south foot of Mt.Taisan, just to the north of Dai Temple. People taking the middle route tend to have a bold idea to climb up to the top of Mt.Taishan. Taking the west route is much easier for travelers to get to the top - first taking a mini bus to the middle of Mt. Taishan - the Middle Gate to the Heaven, then connect the cable car to the south Gate to the Heaven, the summit. The middle route and west route meets at the Middle Gate to the Heaven. So people walking through the middle route can take the cable car to the top at the Middle Gate to the Heaven. From the foot of Mt. Taishan to the top, if you plan to climb to the top, you will pass through three gates - the Red Gate, the Middle Gate to the Heaven and the south Gate to the Heaven. The Middle Gate to the Heaven is the middle of the mountain.
I don't know whether I'm strong enough to get to the summit on foot. So I walk from the north gate of Dai Temple to the starting point of Middle Route - Red Gate for the inspection. I try to see, feel and touch the Red Gate area to decide whether I take the middle route or the west route.
Some photos of the Red Gate area
The night of the city of Taian
In each city I visit, I prefer to find the local night snack at the backstreets. In Taian too, I walk out of my hotel and happen to find a back street lined with many restaurants offering all kinds of night food. The street is down south of Yingsheng Lu. Local people like to eat barbecu lamb. I see the longest barbecue stove with easily operating charcoal - 8 meters long!! Generally, the streets in Taian are very clean, a booming city.
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