Wuzhi Mountain, also known as Wuzhishan Scenic Area, or the Five Finger Mountain, is located in Wuzhishan City. With an altitude of 1,867m,it is the highest peak in Hainan Island. In fact this mountain is 343m higher than Mt.Tai, long regarded as the premier peak of China's five most famous mountains.
What to see?
Wuzhi means five fingers in Chinese and the mountain owes its name to its formation. The overall shape extends like the five digits of a hand. Tradition has it that this is the hand of Sakyamuni and that the legendary Monkey King cannot escape from its control.
The Five Finger Mountain is the symbol of the island. The region has been listed by the International Tourism Organization in recognition of its supreme natural scenery which comprises one of the few natural rain forests surviving in the world today.
A visit to this area will reward you with the scenic wonder of the main peak, impressive waterfalls and for the adventurous an opportunity to float down the mountain streams. Here too you can have a taste of the special customs and culture of the minority of Miao and Li.
The first finger of the five main peaks reaches skywards with a height of over 1,300m. The second finger is the highest, all of 1,876m. There is a natural bridge formed by a huge rock linking the two peaks. Legend tells us that wonderful children and fairies often play on this heavenly bridge. Both peaks are accessible and you can climb to the top for a bird's eye view of the very significant grandeur of their surroundings. The three other peaks are hard to climb but the effort to climb the main peaks is justly rewarded when you feel the experience of riding the clouds and surmounting the mist.
Five Finger Mountain is high and steep, with a complex land form, and verdant forest. The abundant water resources feed groups of waterfalls, the most impressive being the Five Finger Mountain Waterfall on the north face of the first peak. This has a height of 1,000m, and is a grand sight. The various water falls have created a series of deep ponds as they cascade down to the great Five Finger Mountain (Wuzhi Shan) Canyon.
A boat ride through the great Canyon is a thrilling experience. Starting from the dam at its head a gentle current carries you through picturesque surroundings. Above you is a blue sky dotted with white clouds as you wonder at the green forests and rocks shaped by the water over thousands of years. However, this placid drift does not last as the water begins to plummet down the steeper reach resulting in the excited screams and laughter of the passengers.
You will have the chance to witness and feel something of the lifestyle of Li and Miao nationalities: getting to know their customs, appreciating their folk song and dance, tasting their special foods. The 3rd of March of the lunar calendar is their traditional festival when the young people set out to pursue love and happiness. On that day, everyone will wear their finery, drinking, singing and dancing in the open air till the midnight. By planning the time of your visit you will be able to enjoy something of this happy event.
The best time for visiting the Five Finger Mountain is between November and April the following year, while the best time for taking a trip down the canyon is from July to October. This area is an ideal place to visit if you want to avoid sunburn while escaping from the cold of more northern climes.
There is no direct transportation to reach the mountain but you may choose from any of the following routes:
From Haikou to Wuzhishan City: 223km/139 miles, 4hrs
From Sanya to Wuzhishan City: 88km/55 miles, 1.5hrs
From Wuzhishan City to Shuiman Village (the foot of Five Finger Mountain): 38km/24 miles, 1.5hrs
If you wish to participate in the challenging boat ride, you will find the starting point at the Yapai Power Station in Shuiman Village (14km/8.7 miles, 0.5hr)