Shizhusi (Stone Bamboo Temple) is situated on Shizhu (Stone Bamboo) Mountain in Fuqing, Fujian Province. Legend says that one who stays overnight in the temple’s Jiuxian (Nine Immortals) Tower will have a beautiful dream and have all his or her wishes realized.
The mountain is covered with verdant bamboo groves and pine trees. With a summit of 534 meters above the sea level, the scenic area’s beauty lies in its precipitous peaks, queer crags and deep caves. Among its scenic attractions are the peaks of Purple Grinder, Lion, Elephant King, Zhuangyuan (No.1 scholar in the highest imperial examination) and Daughter of Dragon, in addition to rocks given such names as Crane Shadow, Twin Carps, Chessboard, Tiger-Conquering and Arhat. Among the most famous caves are Purple Cloud Cave, Cave to the Heaven, Taoyuan Cave. At the foot of Shizhu Mountain lies the Dongzhang Reservoir with a vast expanse of blue water. The water and the mountain enhance each other's beauty, creating an ideal natural resort for travelers.
Shizhu Temple was built half way up to Zhuangyuan Peak in 874 during the Tang Dynasty. It consists of a series of buildings, including the Nine Immortals Tower, the Jade Emperor Palace, Jialan Hall, Wenchang Pavilion, Temple of the Earth God, Guanyin Hall, Stone Buddha Palace, etc. It is said that in the Han Dynasty (206 BC – AD 220), the He brothers from Fuzhou practiced austerities here and later became immortals. So there is the belief about its effect on people’s dreams. The temple draws a continuous flow of Buddhists all year round.
Transport: One should go to Fuzhou first. From downtown Fuzhou, you can take a long-distance bus to Honglu Town and the journey takes two hours. Then take a tricycle or walk towards the west to reach Dongzhang Reservoir, from where you can see the mountain. The 488-meter-long cableway can take you up the mountain.
Admission: Stone Bamboo Mountain Park: 5 yuan (US$0.6); Stone-Bamboo Temple: 8 yuan (US$1).
(china.org.cn Janaury 28, 2003)