Taishan is a county-sized city located in Jiangmen Prefecture in the southwestern region of Guangdong Province, China. The name often causes confusion because of Tai Shan (Mount Tai) which is located in the Shandong Province and not in Guangdong. Taishan City is known as the 1st home of the overseas Chinese because nearly 1.3 million overseas Chinese coming from 80 different countries have settled. This is greater than its local population of 1 million.

As a consequence, Taishan City is a modern urban area with a strong Western influence, although the classic Chinese customs and traditions are still followed by the people. Being on the Pearl River Delta Taishan City consists of 95 islands and small islets, of which some have become very popular seaside holiday resorts. In Mandarin, the word “shan” means mountain, and Taishan City is named so because almost every village within the city’s precinct has a picturesque hill as a backdrop. The ancestral graves are usually located on or near the hills. Every village becomes a hive of activity during the “Tomb Sweeping Festival” month. It is the ancient practice of giving offerings to ancestors after the Chinese New Year which is still followed. The graves of ancestors are decorated with flowers. Paper money is burnt and firecrackers are burst as part of the ceremonies. Later, there is a feast of roast meats (usually goose or pork) and cakes which is attended even by overseas Taishanese people.

The modern Taishan City is a beach-lovers paradise. The climate is very mild and temperatures range between 18oC in winter and 32oC in summer. The clean beaches, warm sea waters, and water sports activities attract tourists to the city in large numbers throughout the year.

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What to See in Tai'an

The tourist attractions near Tai’an City are centered on Tai Shan. There are magnificent peaks, deep valleys, dense virgin forests of ancient pines and cypresses, breathtaking waterfalls, unusual rock formations. The numerous attractions in the Tai Shan Scenic Area can be seen by following different climbing routes. They include:

East Route – This climb consists of 6,000 steps and is called the Imperial Route. It is dotted with unmatched natural beauty and manmade structure. The route starts from the Dai Temple and passes along the Eighteen Bends, Dai Zong Archway, Jing Shi Valley, Red Gate Palace, and Hu Tian Pavilion.
West Route – This climb consists of two sections. The first section is a high-level walkway which starts from the Heaven & Earth Square and reaches the Mid-Heaven Gate. Here, a cable car service is available to reach the Jade Emperor Summit. The attractions along this route are the Heaven & Earth Square, Tomb of General Feng Yuxiang, Black Dragon Pool, Longevity Bridge, etc.

Peach Blossom Valley Route – This is the easiest route to reach the summit of Tai Shan. One can get taxi cabs or buses along the national highway that passes through the Peach Blossom Ravine. The cabs or buses transport tourists up to the cable car station. Then one can take the cable car to reach the top. This route is a favorite of naturalists and photographers because the cable cars pass over miles and miles of pristine peach blossoms forests that lend a splash of color. The peach blossoms are in full bloom in the month of April. The route is designed so that visitors can see all the sights from the air without needing to climb uphill.

Tianzhu Peak Route – This route is popular with hikers, trekkers, and climbers because it is a rugged and tough route. The Tianzhu Peak is steep and almost vertical like a gigantic candle and has a tall ancient pine tree at the top. The tourist attractions along this route are the Big Tianzhu Peak and Small Tianzhu Peak, General Peak, Eight Immortals Cave, Hou Shi Wu pine forest, etc.

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