Qixianling or “Seven Fairies Mountain” in Baoting is the best opportunity for hiking in a tropical forest in Hainan.
If you like to experience the magic of tropical rainforest, roughing it out along those mountain tracks and return to a 5-star ambience, you must not miss Qixianling and Narada Resort in Hainan.
Though Hainan is famous for its beaches such as Yalong Bay, Sanya Bay, Dadonghai, with abound of international beach resorts, and other tourist spots which include the Ends of the Earth and the Nanshan Cultural Tourism Zone, both of which are on beaches too, the best Hainan can offer which I think is its tropical rainforest. For those travellers looking to experience the magic of tropical rainforest, Qixianling Natural Forest Reserve is only a stone throw away from Sanya.
Qixianling or “Seven Fairies Mountain” in Baoting is the best opportunity for hiking in a tropical forest that I have found in Hainan.
Qixianling is unlike any other tourist spot I have been to in Hainan. The trail includes boardwalks and stairs to get you over the most difficult terrain, but for the most part it is natural and just challenging enough to make it enjoyable.
It takes about two and a half hours to hike to the top of the mountain from Narada Resort and Spa if you go at a leisurely pace. For most of the way, the trail runs next to a small stream, which is among the most pristine I’ve seen anywhere in the world. I wouldn’t drink it, it is a tropical forest, but it is cold and perfect for dipping your head into when the going gets hot. You can see small fish in the stream, tiny frogs in the damp ground surrounding it, and all kinds of other wildlife as you make your way up the hill. Particularly interesting are the mountain crabs, which are colourful, but fast. I tried to take a photo of them, but they are quick to run away, and are good at finding little nooks and crannies to hide in. Lizards are plentiful as well, and you can watch them change colour as they move from one area to another.
Just before you reach the very top, you have to climb up a rock formation with the help of chains that are bolted to the rock. At the top, you will get a spectacular view of the area surrounding Baoting. However, there is a chance that it will be cloudy when you reach the top, even if it was perfectly clear when you started out at the trailhead. The weather in Baoting changes frequently from clear to cloudy to rainy. For me, the hike was worth it despite the clouds when I reached the top, and there are a few good vistas on the way up, so you should have plenty of chances to overlook Baoting.
Qixianling was the most natural tourist spot I have ever seen in Hainan. The best thing about it is that you will be sharing the trail with very few other tourists. It’s not crowded like many other spots in Hainan, as only a few tourists or mostly nature lovers actually want to hike for two or three hours along a difficult trail just to reach at the mountain top. But that’s the beauty of it for me. When you reach the top, there is nobody trying to sell you beads or a photo of yourself climbing the mountain or anything like that. In fact, the only things I saw for sale during the whole hike were a few drinks at about the half way point, which were actually quite welcome. I also ran into a lady who just happened to be making her way up the trail with a basket of wild jungle fruits which I could not name in English. They were delicious, and I have never seen the same fruit again anywhere else.
If you visit Hainan and you want to go for a hike in a tropical forest, Qixianling in Baoting is a perfect place to do it. Do remember that the hike is not exactly easy, be ready to sweat, and come prepared for rain and mist. A rain jacket is something you should definitely consider packing. Also, if you bring a camera, which you should, remember to have a plastic bag or something to keep it dry if the weather does turn wet. It also wouldn’t hurt to pack some snacks, and of course plenty of water. Going down is the hardest part, so remember that on your way up. You will feel tired after all that hiking, and luckily, you will be in Narada Resort and Spa, and will be able to sink into a nice hot spring and relax after your tropical forest adventure, and reward yourself with a big dinner at either its Chinese restaurant or the Western restaurant.
SOURCE: Django for WOS
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