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The Snub-nosed Monkey National Park

The Snub-nosed Monkey National Park is situated in Tacheng Township of Weixi County, Diqing Prefecture. Situated in centre of the "Three Parallel Rivers" Area, the Park covers an area of 125 square kilometers.

Highlighted by the snub-nosed monkeys (also called “golden monkeys”)-that inhabit in virgin forests-and Dharma Cave, the Park mainly includes the Wildlife Rescue Station in Xiangguqing Valley, Dharma Cave, Qizong Spring, the Centuries-old Ginkgo Tree in Qibie Village and the pastoral landscapes around Lapu River etc.

(1)-The Wildlife Rescue Station

As the major habitat for the snub-nosed monkeys, which have been listed as one of the first-class state protected animals, Xiangguqing Valley has conserved an excellent eco environment dominated by coniferous forests (such as firs). It appears to be the best arena to watch and carry out research on sub-nosed monkeys.

The snub-nosed monkey is the very species among monkeys that live and multiply in the alpine coniferous forests with the altitude of over 3,000 meters above the sea level. According to incomplete statistics, there live in Xiangguqing Valley more than 360 snub-nosed monkeys. Xiangguqing Valley is also the hometown of "Lingling"-the mascot monkey for "1999' China-Kunming World Horticultural Exposition".

(2)-Dharma Cave

Dharma (Bodhidharma) Cave is located on Xiangbi Mountain (Elephant Trunk Mountain) in Qizong Village of Weixi County, Diqing Prefecture. It is said that Dharma became a Buddha after 10 years’ meditation in the cave. (Bodhidharma, ?-536 , an Ancient India Monk, the founder of Zen Sect in China; the most impressive picture of him is “Crossing over the River on a Reed Withe”)

In Dharma Cave, there is a temple built with wood against the cliff and shaped after the cave, forming a unique view of a stone cave being the monks’ dormitory. On each lunar April 1, the date when Dharma is said to reach his final cultivating stage as a Buddha, plenty of pilgrims come to pray and circumambulate around the mountain.

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