EXPLORE CHINA’S MOUNT HUANGSHAN with this slideshow, check the location map and get all the facts and information below

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Map showing the location of Mount Huangshan world heritage site in ChinaFactfile

Website Categories: Mountains; Temperate & Boreal Forests;

Area: 161 km2

Inscribed: 1990


  • Outstanding natural beauty (vii);
  • Significant number of rare, endemic and/or endangered species (x);
  • Cultural criterion (ii)

Location and Values: Mount Huangshan was amongst China’s first world heritage sites, and has been described as ‘the loveliest mountain of China’. It is a spectacular, isolated mountain capped with steep granite peaks and dissected by deep gorges, with innumerable granite towers, spires and balancing rocks where gnarled pines cling to life in the most unlikely places. It has provided inspiration for landscape artists, poets, writers and hermits over the centuries and is listed for both its cultural and natural attributes. Although it is a relatively small site it covers a wide range of altitude (from around 500m to 1864m) and supports a correspondingly rich flora with many endemic species. For example, half of China’s fern species are recorded here and a third of its bryophytes (mosses and liverworts).

Conservation Status and Prospects. According to IUCN’s Conservation Outlook Assessment (2014) the conservation status of this site is ‘good’. The IUCN report notes that ‘the outlook for maintaining the aesthetic and natural values of Huangshan looks promising with a core area largely uninhabited and a well-funded and well-staffed management system in place. The major threats of increasingly large numbers of visitors are being dealt with and prospects for continuing to control these threats are good. Given its celebrity status as “the loveliest mountain in China,” attention will continue to be lavished on the site and there should be improvements in interpretation and in managing visitor flow to reduce congestion at popular locations in the park.’

Google Earth
Official UNESCO Site Details
IUCN Conservation Outlook
UNEP-WCMC Site Description
Birdlife IBA

Slideshow description

Images of Mount Huangshan World Heritage Site in China

The slideshow is intended to ‘tell the story’ of Mount Huangshan, and features a portfolio of photos from a visit by Peter Howard in May/June 2017. The slideshow begins with the cable car at the eastern steps, which reduces the steep climb to the summit area to a short 12-minute ride. At the summit the crowded paths connect some spectacular vantage points which look out – through the haze-over the forested valleys below and across to dramatic rock formations around adjacent peaks. Many of the photos in this portfolio are from the ‘West Sea Canyon’, a steep gorge with a particularly high concentration of spectacular rock stacks and formations where a narrow walkway attached to sheer rock faces and through some tight rock ‘squeezes’ allows visitors to experience one of the ‘wilder’ (and less crowded) parts of the mountain. Much of the remaining part of the slideshow covers the ascent of ‘Heaven Capital Peak’ which has to rank amongst the top experiences of a visit to China. The climb is made possible by the construction of steps, carved into impossibly steep rock faces with ropes and handrails provided at critical points. Depending on the weather, it may not be possible to see the route ahead (or the view from the summit) but the experience of such a climb is at least exhilarating.

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