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Fangshan Geopark

Overview

Located at the convergence where Beijing City greets Hebei Province and 40km southwest of Beijing downtown, Fangshan Geopark stretches an area of 953.95 square kilometers and consists of eight scenic sites. Priding itself on the abundant and complete geological relics which spanning Archean, Proterozoic, Paleozoic, Mesozoic and Cenozoic periods and mirroring the earth’s evolution of billions of years in North China, this geopark is famed as a “Natural Geological Museum”. The term “Yanshanian Movement” which stands for the eastern China's Mesozoic orogenesis is derived from the widely scattered and distinctive geological remains here which reflect the intra-continental orogenesis. Besides, it is the place where China embarks on the earliest geological study.

Featuring the typical semi-humid semi-dry temperate zone Karst Landform in North China, Fangshan Geopark boasts massive soaring mountains, enchanting valleys such as Zhanggu Valley which zigzags its way along the steep cliffs thousands of miles before disappears into the remotest corner, the unique Karst landform distinguished by marble-granite double layer construction in Baishishan and the sediment caves of high aesthetic and scientific value in Shihuadong. The long history has bestowed Fangshan Geopark with rich cultural heritage: ancient architecture, stone grottoes, sculptures and tombs which are embedded into this green land like diamonds. For instance, Yunju Temple is decorated with numerous delicate stone sculptures, Haotian Tower highlights the essence of ancient tower architecture and Great Wall of Ming Dynasty in Baishishan District is well-preserved, one can discern the original outlook of that era easily.

In 1929, with the unearth of "Peking Man" in Zhoukoudian Scenic site, Fangshan Geopark shocked the world and becomes the cradle for paleo-anthropological studies as well as hot tourism destination. Due to its high geological value, enchanting Karst landform, eye-dazzling underground caves, as well as profound culture and ancient history, it is listed by UNESCO as World Geopark and World Cultural Heritage in 1986 and 1987 respectively. Besides, it is the first trans-provincial geopark and one of the few comprehensive parks in China that integrates camping, trekking and geotourism.
 

 the Eye-dazzling Stone Formations in Shihuadong Scenic Site



Highlights: Eight Scenic Districts of Fangshan Geopark

Zhoukoudian Scenic District (“Peking Man” paleo-anthropological site)

Located in Zhoukoudian Town, Fangshan Area, Beijing City, Zhoukoudian scenic district covers an area of 25.52 square kilometers. In 1929, the sensational unearth of the first “Peking Man” arose accumulating interests worldwide, archaeologist, anthropologists and common tourists throng into this site to see the primitive man’s relics and animal fossils. During the massive and organized excavation waves in the following years, 40 individuals’ over 200 pieces of skeletons, ten thousands of stone tools and 200 kinds of animal fossils ranging from 500,000 to 10,000 years ago are excavated. Among the 27 relic sites stretching an area of 4 square kilometers, there is the “PekingMan” (500thousand years ago) Paleo-anthropological Site,” the “New Cave Man (100thousand to 200thoudsand years ago) Site “and the “Upper Cave Man (18thousand years ago) Site”, etc. Zhoukoudian Scenic District’s collection of fossils and primitive man relics &remains are the most complete and representative ones of Old Stone Age. The primitive man’s relics spanning from700 thousand to 10 thousand years ago cover three critical phrases of human evolution, embodying the evolution of ecological, biological and human in an all-round way, thus is identified as one of the origination site of civilization. In 1987, this site was listed as world culture heritage by UNESCO. By now, the 1000m2 Zhoukoudian Museum embraces tourists with open arms.

Shihuadong Scenic District

Located in Hebei Town and Fozizhuang Village,Fangshan Area,Beijing City, the 36.5 square kilometers Shihuadong Scenic District comprises of near one hundred caves(include Shihua Dong, Qingfeng Dong, Yinhu Dng,Tangren Dong and Kongshui Dong,etc.) along the Dashi River’s grey granite with history over 490 to 450million years. It is the typical semi-humid semi-dry temperate zone Karst Landform in North China as well as in the world. The magnificent Shihuadong shelters a profusion of stone bamboos, columns, curtains, waterfalls,flowers, corals and boasts the most complete and diversified Stalactites, the most densely distributed and biggest Karst Caves in North China, thus is renowned as the Underground Geological Wonderland and the Museum of Karst Caves. Yinhudong has a water cave stretching nearly 800 meters long, and the snow white dangling “silver fox” of unrivalled beauty is one of the most splendid artworks of nature. 
  

 Shihuadong Stone Formations

 Shihuadong Stone Formations

 Shihuadong Stone Formations

 Shihuadong Stone Formations



Shidu Scenic District

Located in Shidu Town and Zhangfang Town, Fangshan Area, Beijing, the 313.69 square kilometers Shidu ranks as the biggest and most typical Karst landform in North China with soaring peaks, steep cliffs and labyrinthine of dizzying and bizarre caves. Shidu is the only natural scenic spot characterized by Karst peak forests and river valley topography meanwhile in North China. The 10 segments of Juma River are all assigned with a ferry, hence derived the name Shidu which means '10 ferry crossings' in Chinese. Shidu owns extremely rich travel resources: rare seen grotesque Karst caves, eroded stone formations, various sediment formations, enchanting water scenery such as waterfalls, pools, springs, brooks and rivers. Besides, the cultural sites such as Sanhezhuang stone sculpture and ancient tower add much color to it. This site is home to abundant flora and fauna species. Among the over 100 sites, there are mainly 11 sites (Gushan Zai, Xianfeng Valley, Wangjingxiangou, South Grand Valley, Pudu Mountain Mansion, Martyrs' Cemetery, Xianqi Dong, MT Tianchishan, Xihu Guang, Hongye Grand Valley) embedded inside, connected by the Juma River which directs its course freely. You can enjoy the entertainment activities here to your heart’s content also. Juma Amusement Park, Jiudu Drift, Badu Boating Site, Liudu Boating site, Qingjiang Jiulongtan provide various activities include Bungee jumping, cableway, cliff climbing, drifting, pedal boat, surging, swimming and horse riding, etc.
 

Shidu's various entertainment activities

Juma River



Baihuashan - Baicaopan Scenic District

Located in Fangshan Area, Baihuashan (literally means hundreds of flowers mountain) is made of volcanic rocks of Mesozoic Period which can be traced back 160million to 137million years ago, with the 2161-meters-high Baicaopan as its highest peak, which adopts distinctive views with the alternating of seasons. Baihuashan is an ocean of flowers include Prunus armeniaca,lily, chrysanthemum in Spring, Summer and Autumn. Climate vary dramatically along the mountains, each June, when spring is everywhere at the foot of Baicaopan, there are still 100-meteres long glacier lingers in the peak. Trekking along the 8000 meters long mountain ridge, you can reach Baihuashan on Northeast. Qianfo peak and Guanyin Peak are the two main peaks of Baihuashan Mountian. The grotesque stone formations are the remains of the fourth ice age. Home to 200 kinds of flowers, 400 kinds of herbs, 811 kinds of Vascular plants, 166 kinds of animals, this place is famed as the Natural Botanic Garden of North China. A marvelous 150-meters-high waterfall plunges from the mountain and forms a deep pool, producing thundering voices which echoes among the valleys, and the splash water can refresh you instantly during the hot summer.

Yunju Temple - Shangfangshan Scenic District

Situated in Fangshan Area, Beijing, the 31.37 square kilometers Yunju Temple - Shangfangshan Scenic District boasts the best preserved original forest in North China and rich flora & fauna species. It is divided into Shangfangshan Scenic Site and Yunju Temple Scenic site. Shangfangshan, the national-level forest garden is a comprehensive site with bridges, pavilions, temples, palaces, caves, stones, peaks, forest scenery. Just as the saying goes: Shangfang is North China’s Suzhou and Hangzhou city. Yunshui Dong is the earliest Karst Cave open to tourists in China, the essence part of Shangfangshan Scenic site and one of the biggest caves in North China, with over 120 stone formation wonders scatter among its six halls. According to geologists, this 600-meters-deep cave was an ocean from 600millions to 400millions years ago. The sediments of limestones accumulate over hundreds of meters high. During the uplifting process, ocean rises to mountains, and the limestones are shaped into caves and stone formations under the erosion of acrid underground water. Against the light and music, the scene is absolutely intoxicating and you will feel like Alice in Wonderland.
 

 Twin Bells of Qingfengdong

 Xianqidong, delicate stone formations



The over 1300 years old Yunju Temple spans six dynasties and houses 1,122 plates (3,572 volumes, 14,278 pieces) of stone inscriptions of sutra, which is a unparallel magnificent undertaking in the world’s culture history. Aside from the stone sutras, Yunju Temple has stored 22,000 editions of paper sutras, 77,000 plates of wood sutras, seven towers built in Tang Dynasty, all of which are priceless treasures.

Changxin Monestary: First built in 1404AD during Ming Dynasty, this architecture combines Buddhism and Daoism, which is a rare phenomenon.

Sacred Rice
Sacred rice is not rice, it is quartzite grains resembling rice, which is a very unique geological relics.

Shenglianshan Scenic District

Located in Shijiaying Village, Fanghsan Area, 90km from Beijing downtown, the 28.1 square kilometers Shenglianshan Scenic District boasts picturesque scenery, classic Buddhism and Taoism architecture and rich cultural context. The Sacred Rice (a unique sediments of rocks) of 2.6million years ago can be spotted here also, bring mystery into this site. Less hunted by tourists and is relatively more tranquil, this place with annual average temperature of 10.8℃ is an idea summer retreat. This site contains over 700 species of plants and 100 kinds of animals. Mountains stretch all the way to horizon, valleys run in four directions widely, the majestic stone cliffs erect like shields, and the waterfalls lose their way into the forest. Along the cliffs, Buddhism architecture clusters are built, the 4-meters-high Xishan Holly Mother Statue is the best preserve sculpture here.

Yesanpo scenic district: the Utopia
 

Yeshanpo Scenic Site



Located in Laishui County, Hebei Province, Yesanpo Scenic Site consists of three 52.5-kilometers-long deep valleys resembling the shape of a deer’s horn. The representative Karst landform together with waterfalls, caves, cliffs and bizarre stones, complete the scene of the bewildering land of wonder. Juma River meadows its way along the Juma River Scenic Site like a silver ribbon. Mt Fodongta derives its name from its shape and the Buddha statues inside of its caves. On top of this mountain grow 70 giant pine trees. Standing on the peak of this 1027-meters-high mountain, one can have a splendid view. Among the Mt Fodongta lies a spring which keeps churning out fish, which is a very interesting phenomenon in the world, and listed as one of the eight bizarre Spring in Hebei Province. Within this site, there is a well-developed bridge called Tiansheng Bridge(Nature Bridge), which is shaped by hands of nature and have high aesthetic and study value. The biggest waterfall jumps 36 meters from the mountain, like thousands horses racing down and making thundering voices.

Baishishan Scenic District
 

Baishishan Among the Mist



Located within Laiyuan County, Hebei Province, Baishishan Scenic District resembles a giant crown sits on a red castle, covering an area of 60 square kilometers. It has the only marble landform in China. Within the boundary of this site, mountains gather together, rocks competing with the utmost bizarre shapes, waterfalls and springs compose the symphony & lullaby to mountains alternately. The winding Juma River is originated from this area. Longhu Spring(Dragon and Tiger Spring) with a altitude of 1300m is the origination place of Shibuxia Waterfall, which is composed of over 10 waterfalls, among them, Shuanglong Waterfall is the biggest, it plunges 50 meters into the pool by two steps, producing splashes like broken jades when hit the rocks,sometimes you can see a rainbow. Jumayuan Spring Clusters is composed of seven springs, the surrounding areas is blessed with lush plantation, tranquil atmosphere and enchanting landscape. Except the charming landscape, cultural sites include Xingwen Tower, Geyuan Temple, Baishishan Great Wall enrich this site with profound background.

Baishishan Great Wall
Baishishan Great Wall, starts from Huairou Area of Beijing city, runs across Badaling southwest to Laiyuan County before marching into Shanxi Province. It is built during 1573 to 1576, one of the best preserved Great Wall of Ming Dynasty, the original flavor of that period is maintained very well. Baishikou is a very important stronghold in ancient times.

Xingwen Tower
Located in Laiyuan County, Xingwen Tower was first built during 744AD in Tang Dynasty. It is 21.5 meters in height, this five-layer octagon brick tower is composed of Base, body and Tasha. The peak of this tower is leaning, this is the only leaning Buddhism Tower remains in the world.

This scenic site is blessed with the most complete type of chemical sediments, the largest number of stone shields (over 200 stone shields formed by deposit of penetrating water through cracks), the first and best-developed moonmilk stone and the utmost crystal bedding of stalagmites deposited by dripping water. Inside of these multi-layer caves, Caves here has layers amounting to 7, the largest number in China. Layer 1 to 6 are limestone caves and layer 7 is an underground river. At present, layer 1 to 4 is open to public, more than 2,500m long tour route is developed within 18 scenic areas including over 120 landscapes and 16 halls and chambers.
 

 the Dangling Silver Fox

 Xianqidong

  

 shihuadong, stone formation

 Shihuadong, stone formation resembling clouds

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