Yong Tai is about a 25 minute train ride from Fuzhou and has many trails to hike. The Hikes range from short and easy to long and hard but all are gorgeous. With the help of one of our amazing senior teachers a group of us planned a weekend away for some hiking and relaxation.The hotel, Qingyushan Yuwenquan, we stayed at was gorgeous. Located on top of one on the mountains we had spectacular views from wherever we were.
Though we had many options for hikes there were three that our fellow teachers had recommended. Our plan was to do the two smaller hikes on the first day and the big hike on the second day.
The first hike was by far the easiest. It was mostly flat and the trail was wide. We walked along a river for the most part until we got to a temple at the end. This temple was beautiful with a hidden shrine behind it. To the side of the temple was a large bell. Each of us took turns in ringing it, which was surprisingly a bigger challenge than any of us assumed.
As we were leaving this trail to go to our next one we were cornered by a local, who we named “Shouty Brian”, who encouraged us to go for food at his ‘restaurant’. None of us could understand him very well and most of our side of the conversation was “ting bu dong”- “I don’t know”.
Our next hike was were I showed off my clumsiness, I think I fell over three or four times. This was partly due to all the hiking trails in China being cement rather than natural trails.
As always with China, we found many mistranslated signs on this hike, which offered us a great source of entertainment. At the time I thought of taking photos of the funniest ones but chose not to and as I sit here typing I wish I had.
This hike was slightly harder than our first but had two main waterfalls. The first was the bathing pool for ancestors and known as the Fairy Lake. The second waterfall was big and beautiful. At this waterfall there were rafts to take you to the temple behind the waterfall but sadly they had been locked to stop them from floating away. We sat looking at this waterfall and eating pistachios for quite some time until half the group decided to head back to the hotel and the rest of us ventured on.
At the top of this hike was another temple, this one with a man serving tea. He enjoyed trying to communicate with the lao wais although once again the conversation was filled with many “ting bu dongs”.
When we had got back down to the end of the trail we decided we were all in need of food. We caught a bus to where we had seen small restaurants and stopped at the first one. We order what could have easily been a feast for ten. The food was delicious, little did we know that it was in fact Shouty Brian’s place.
Unfortunately the second day was very wet and many of the hiking trails were washed out. That included the big hike that we had planned. We were fortunate enough to find one that was open. So we hopped in a bus, the hotel organised for us, and went to pick up our friends who had ventured off earlier in the rain and went for our hike.
This hike was still quite long and we had a couple of options of which way to go. The way we chose had many ups and downs and we were constantly walking behind, through and around waterfalls, which made the views even more spectacular.
Due to the rain the trail was extra slippery and I fell over whenever I wasn’t using some kind of support. This did not interfere with my enjoyment of the hike though. Instead it offered me an opportunity to laugh at myself.
All three of these hikes were worth doing. I look forward to going back one day soon to do the big hike that we had planned. Fortunately it’s close to home and the train ticket is cheap. And yes I would also go back to Shouty Brian’s for another feast. If you enjoyed reading this post please, like, comment, share and subscribe.