On the last leg of our trip we went on a day-trip to Laoshan [嶗山] on the outskirts of the Qingdao city. The information from various sources were very vague and especially hard to find during the low season.
In the end we took the public bus, which only cost us a few RMBs but rumbled through the different districts. Paddy laughed at me when I started nodding off on the bus.
Upon entering the main visitor center, all the visitors have to purchase their entrance tickets and transfer to the designated buses. We were quite amused by their new ticketing system which checks the fingerprints!
The landscape of Laoshan and Tai Shan are very different. At 1133 meters it is the only mountain whose peak is over 1000 meters and the highest mountain along China’s 18,000-kilometer-long coastline.
The mountain is also known for the Taoist Temples. In its prosperous time, there were 9 great palaces, 8 great temples, and 72 nunneries.
Many pilgrims come to the mountain to tie their wishes and blessings on trees along the paths.
The big boulders stacked on top of each other, making up this imposing mountain. In the summer, Laoshan has many natural springs and waterfalls. Laoshan Mountain mineral water is a speciality, which claims can be used to cure diseases.
Switchbacks near the top of the mountain.
We were amongst the handful of visitor that day, but you can see the stalls lining along the trails waiting for the travel season to begin.
We had actually made a wrong turn, but then stumbled across this beautiful town cascading down to the sea.
On the bus back to town we saw rows and rows of fishing boats and just jumped off the bus.
“Do you know if there are any more buses today? We are about 20km away from Qingdao….”
The boats had finished their catch in the morning and now safely anchored in the harbor.
Eventually we did find the right bus and got back to town. Inside a big department store the New Year celebration is in full swing. Many variety of gifts and traditional food to prepare for visits.
A quick stroll through the market before packing up and heading to the airport.
I should have brought back a few feet of those sausages back to Hong Kong.
The whatever it takes attitude in China can be seen clearly by this bicycle-mopper inside the airport terminal. Genius!
They didn’t even try to dress up the bike, the man here probably uses the same bike to get to/from home each day.
Goodbye Qingdao, that was fun!