Mount Huaguo (Chinese: 花果山; pinyin: Huāguǒ Shān; Wade–Giles : Hua1kuo3 Shan1; Japanese: Kakazan; Vietnamese: Hoa Quả Sơn) or Flowers and Fruit Mountain, is a major area featured in the novel Journey to the West. It is also the name of popular tourist destination based on the novel.
Journey to the West
In the novel, this mountain is located in the country of Aolai (傲來) in the Eastern Continent of Superior Deity (simplified Chinese: 东胜神州; traditional Chinese: 東勝神州; pinyin: Dōng Shèngshenzhōu; Wade–Giles: Tung1Sheng4shen1Chou1), also known in Anthony C. Yu's translation as the "Pūrvavideha Continent". It is known as the birthplace of Sun Wukong, one of the novel's main characters. The large mountain counts many demons and monkeys in its population and contains many hidden areas, such as the Shuilian Cave. After Sun Wukong bravely rushes through a large waterfall and into this cave, every individual in the mountain acknowledges him as their king.
After Wukong becomes king, this mountain becomes exceedingly civilized and well trained for various future conflicts such as war. These traits are seen in the fact that Sun Wukong often left this mountain for reasons, including his eventual task of protecting the Tang monk Xuanzang on his journey to India. Due to the natural and civilized ways of this mountain set by Wukong, this mountain continues to thrive even after 500 years of conflict.
Mount Huaguo is located in Yuntai, seven kilometers southeast of Lianyungang City. It lies 625 meters above sea level and covers an area of 84.3 square kilometers, with 136 peaks. The area is a popular tourist attraction as a result of its appearance in the well-known Chinese novel Journey to the West.
Mount Huaguo is a popular tourist attraction, with over 100 scenic spots and thousands of visitors every year, especially because of its role in Journey to the West. Since the novel is very influential and popular in China, the mountain has many statues based on its heroes, such as a sculpture of the head of Sun Wukong, the Monkey King, one of the novel's most powerful characters, who was also said to be born on the mountain. Near the entrance stand sculptures of the four main heroes, along with 109 stone monkeys welcoming visitors as they enter and six stone lions guarding the place. Other attractions related to Sun Wukong include Monkey Stone, Water Curtain Cave, Sanyuan Palace, Yuvu Peak and the South Gate of Heaven, etc.
People call it “Monkey Stone” because from a distance it looks like a monkey. Because of this, people like to relate the stone with the Sun Wukong, who rules and protects his home just as this stone monkey seems to protect this place.
Water Curtain Cave
Water Curtain Cave is natural waterfall over a cave that was formed by a ground fissure. What makes it unique is that in front of the cave, there are many ancient carvings, and the letters were written by emperors from different dynasties, such as “印心石屋", which is written by Qing dynasty Emperor Daoguang. Inside, there are tunnels leading to a platform inside the cave. There is a spring inside called Lingquan Spring; it is not big, but it is always full of water, even when there is a draught. There is also a story behind it: it is said that the spring can lead you to the Dragon King’s Palace.
San Yuan Palace
San Yuan Palace is the biggest and one of the most ancient buildings in Huaguo Mountain. It was initially built during the Tang Dynasty. It contains three statues that represent the three gods of Heaven, Earth, and Water.