© Heiner Lamprecht

Where Hollywood gets it’s inspirations

We spent the weekend in Zhangjiajie, Hunan. The area is not really known among foreign tourists, but there are some very scenic and spectacular spots here, like Zhangjiajie Forest Park and Tianmen Mountain.

I was especially stunned by the bizarr rocks in the Forest Park. These tall and partly woody piles are several hundret meters height. They also inspired the guys in Hollywood for the film Avatar.

There are several trails for visitors throughout the park. But it’s a bit strange for European visiters, that all these trailes are paved, and there are always stairs. No real fun at 38° and hight air moisture. Besides, the area is really crowded, as usual in China. Chinese tour-guides always carry microphone and speaker to treat their groups. And there are a lot of groups here. When meeting at one of the hot spots, the guide try to drown out each other, making it hard to find a nice spot for relaxing and enjoying the gourgous landscape.

We stayed inside the park and took a quiet way down through a lonesome valley back to the park exit. Just two carriers and four tourists on the whole way.

Back in the town of Zhanjiajie, we took the cable car to Tianmen Mountain. Up there, one can have a walk along paths built onto the cliff face. Parts of the walk have a glass floor, offering a stunning view down into a valley about one thousand meters deep.

However, main attraction is the Tianmen Cave, a natural hole in the mountain, about 130 meters height and some 30 meters wide. There are busses going from the middle station of the cablecar to a place below the cave. From there a steep staircase featuring 999 stairs is leading the last few hundred meters.

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