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Mt Emei (Emeishan)

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At 3,117 meters (10,226 feet) tall, Mount Emei is the highest of China’s four sacred mountains of Buddhism. Buddhist monks have made pilgrimages to the temples and monasteries of Emei Shan for nearly 1,800 years. As a nod to the religious and cultural importance of Emei Shan, in 1996 UNESCO opted to name the entire mountain as one of its World Heritage sites. Though a cable car now carries most visitors to the lofty summit, those wanting to commune with the mountain can trek the same pilgrim trails as those from centuries past. For a rewarding cultural experience it’s also possible to punctuate the journey with an overnight stay in a monastery. While a two-day trek to the summit to catch the Sichuan sunset is a favorite activity among local trekkers, all visitors must walk through the forests of wild monkeys who have become accustomed to human handouts. Consider bringing a stick.

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