Climbed Tianmenshan (4 hour punishing hike in the hot weather...never again...feet are burning...but what a way to get a six pack!!...)...never going to do that again...tough mountain to climb but spectacular views...in the middle you feel like giving up...but something inside you says "keep going!".
Tourists can walk on kilometres of paths built onto the cliff face at the top of the mountain, including sections with glass floors. An 11 kilometres (6.8 mi) road with 99 bends also reaches the top of the mountain and takes visitors to Tianmen cave, a natural hole in the mountain of a height of 131.5 metres (431 ft).
1. It is not as dangerous or scary as the media portrays it as. Everything is safe. If you do not wish to climb the cave, there are elevators that take you to the top (I only found out AFTER I hiked to the top with a 12KG bag behind my back!).
2. Allow a day to see the cave. Start in the morning at around 9am and finish by 4pm. One day is enough. The cost per person is RMB 250 at the time of writing.
3. Be prepared to walk. Wear good quality walking shoes.
The Cable Car
Tianmen Mountain Cableway is claimed to be the "longest passenger cableway of high mountains in the world", with 98 cars and a total length of 7,455 metres (24,459 ft) and ascent of 1,279 metres (4,196 ft). The highest gradient is an unusual 37 degrees.
It will take around a 3 to 4 HOURS wait for you to get onto the cable car (both directions, to go up and come down). It is much quicker if you take one of the free shuttle buses (price is included in the ticket). There is hardly a wait for the shuttle vans.
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