WHERE: Hua Shan Teahouse, Shaan’Xi Province, China
There is nothing more ceremonial than a pilgrimage to the summit of Hua Shan, China, for a fine cup of tea. If your grit is higher than the scale of the mountain – standing at 2,160 meters tall – we challenge you to hike it. The road to heaven is a surreal and vertigo-inducing experience a thrill-seeker would not want to miss. Aptly named Plank Walk in the Sky, it is paved with narrow pathways precariously bending around the edge of the mighty cliff.
For those who are deterred, you can choose to take the cable car ride from the East Gate to the North Peak to catch a glimpse of the beautiful vista over the mountain valleys.
At the end of the journey sits an ancient Taoist temple, a sacred sanctuary that has been converted into a tea house. Travelers will be rewarded with a warm cup of hard-earned tea and a settling sense of Zen, the perfect coda to a long physical and spiritual trial.
Tea has always been part of Taoism’s modus operandi in its pursuit of spiritual wisdom, mental and physical well-being. A good place for such soul searching would be on the altitude of the Hua Shan mountain, where you can enjoy a tea ceremony conscientiously prepared with the natural water sourced from the range’s snowmelt, rain and mountain springs. Every sipping of the tea next to the breathtaking panorama is an elevated experience.
Park entrance fee: mandatory for all visitors
- Busy season (1 March to 30 November): ~S$35
- Off-season (1 December to 28 February): ~ S$19
Cable cars: alternative to walking to the summit
- North peak cable car: ~S$15 one way.
- West peak cable car: ~S$27 one way (lasts 20 minutes).
Access to the cable cars: mandatory for all visitors using a cable car
- North cable car station: shuttle bus from East Gate visitors center, ~S$4 one way.
- West cable car station: shuttle bus from East Gate visitors center, ~S$8 one way.