Qixia Mountain, named as Sheshan Mountain in the ancient times, locates at the northeast suburban area of Nanjing with Mountains all around except north which is facing Yangtze River. The total area of the scenic is about 860 hectares, with the highest peak of 286 meters high. It was called as "the first bright and elegant mountain of Jinling"by Emperor Qianlong.
There is a saying as "Fall Qixia" from Ming Dynasty. "Red maple of Qixia" is one of the new forty sceneries of Jinling. There are kinds of red leaves on Qixia Mountain, esp. the sweet gum, including red maple, Japanese Maple, Buerger Maple, 'Acer palmatum, Zelkova, Chinese pistache etc. when it's late fall, the mountain is full of red just like the splendid sunglow falling. its special charming appeals many tourists to visit. It's one of the four famous red maple scenic areas in our country.
There are historic interests all over Qixia Mountain with beautiful mountain sceneries and profound culture meanings. There is a saying, "one Qixia mountain is a half of Jinling's history." In history, there are five kings and fourteen emperors climbing up on Qixia Mountain. Among them, Emperor Qianlong came to Jiangnan six times and five times he visited Qixia Mountian. In the scenic area, there are three national cultural relic protection units, several provincial cultural relic protection units and more than 80 historic interests site, assembling religious culture, emperor culture, green culture, civilized customs, geological culture, stone carving culture and tea culture. The dangerous peaks, strange stones, famous springs, deep gullies integrate with old pines, green cypresses, peaches and red maples, naturally made by God. Se li Tower of Sui Dynasty, Mingzheng Memorial of Tang Dynasty, Thousands Buddhas Rock, Yu King Memorial, Xanadu of Qianlong, mountain and room with ten thousand of pines, Ancient Banruo Ting site, Tai Xu Pavilion, Speaking Hill Pavilion, Lu Yu Tea house etc are all around. The ancient temple with thousands years, the ancestor of Buddhism "three theories", Qixia Temple as one of the "four sections" of Buddhism locates at the west side of Qixia Mountain, with lingering chanting, morning bell and dawn drum is just like the worlds wonderland.
Qi Xia Mountain, 313 meters above the sea level, has a dense forest and a great deal of springs tricking sluggishly all the year round. The Zhen Spring and Bay Ru Sping are the most famous for 200 Buddhist monks living in Qi Xia temple had taken advantage of them as drinking water. Qi Xia Scenic spot including Qi Xia Temple, the Thousand-Buddha Cliff, the Sheli Tower, the stone carving for tombs of the Nan Chao and so on, have a history of over 1500 years by now, which is one of the holy lands of our country. In the Nan Song (420-479), a recluse lived here in seclusion and rebuilt his house to be a temple. Later, Li Zhi, the founder of the Tang Dynasty enlarged it adding 49 beautiful halls. In the Nan Song Dynasty, the forest around the Temple, together with the forests around Ling Yan Temple in Shan Dong, Yu Quan Temple in Hu Bei, Gou Qing Temple in Zhe Jiang were taken as the Four Thickest Forests Under The Sun. The Sheli Tower carved the stories about Sakyamuni finely and imaginatively was built in the Sui Dynasty (601) and is one of the main ancient remains in Qi Xia scenic spots. It is 18 meters high.
The Thousand-Buddha Cliff was started to cut in the Nan Song (484-511) year by year. There are 394 Buddha-inches in different size and 515 Buddha statues were placed in them. So, it is called the Thousand-Buddha Cliff. As time past, the spare of Cliff was extended more and more in the Dynasties of the Tang, Song, Yuan, Ming. Finally, 700 Buddha statues in total were set on there, the largest tens meters high, the smallest mere inches short.
Qixia Mountain also has many profound geological details, with many fossils of ancient biology. It is the naming place for many geological scientific names and is called as "natural geology museum" and "textbook of geology" by experts.
Since recent years, the scenic area has been developed a lot on the aspects of construction of the scenery, greening of the gardens, protection of cultural relics, protection of zoology etc and turned "the first bright and elegant mountain of Jinling" which integrated by natural mountains and rivers, stone forests and historical civilization scenery into the a resort with the main function of visiting, touring, pilgrimage and science archaeology.