Chaonei No.81

In central Beijing there is a beautiful 19th century mansion built in the French Baroque style. It lies abandoned and overgrown with weeds which is perhaps surprising given that this is prime real estate in the middle of one of the world’s biggest cities. The reason is that Chinese buyers shun this building because of its reputation as a haunted house.

Yan Di – The First Chinese Emperor

The legendary Yan Di or "Flame Emperor" is said to have ruled a stone age tribe around the area of Yang Tou Shan (Sheep’s Head Mountain) just north of Baoji in Shaanxi province, China. There are few facts known about Yan Di as historical records do not exist from the time he supposedly lived.

Mount Everest

The peak of Mount Everest stands at 8,848 metres (29,029 feet) above sea level, making it the tallest mountain on Earth*. Over the years it has claimed many lives as people have attempted to reach the summit and one of these climbers is thought to haunt the slopes after he died in 1924.

Drum Hill, Fuzhou

Drum Hill can be found on the northern bank of the Minjiang River, in the eastern suburbs of Fuzhou, Fujian Province. It is thought that it gets its name from a huge boulder, shaped like a drum that sits on the summit of the hill.

Mongolian Olgoi Khorkhoi (aka Mongolian Death Worm)

The following I was told near Xiangshawan Gorge in the Gobi desert. The guides seemed to genuinely believe this tale rather than treating it as a legend. The Mongol people of Mongolia and northern China are tough. They are skilled archers, hunters and wrestlers. They also among the most famous horsemen in the world, learning to ride almost as soon as they can walk.

Vegetable Lamb of Tartary

When I was told this story just outside Ordos City, the guides certainly didn’t believe the tale. They seemed to take a kind of smug satisfaction that the western explorers who took this legend back to Europe came to such a ridiculous conclusion. I think it could possibly been a medieval Chinese/Mongol equivalent to the Scottish "Wild Haggis" story often told to mislead tourists!

Baoxie Plank Road

An ancient Chinese proverb states "The road to Sichuan is harder than climbing the sky". Certainly before the advent of modern roads and rail the Sichuan basin was impossible to reach without a long and dangerous journey through harsh mountains where cold, fatigue, hunger, bandits and wild animals waited for those entering the region.

Undead Lover

Many years ago a Chinese nobleman was woken each night by the sound of someone walking by his house. One night, he peered out of the door and saw a beautiful and well dressed lady carrying a peony lantern.

Jiang Shi: The Hopping Vampire

In Mian county, in China’s Shaanxi province, rural folk never venture out of doors after dark. The reason for this is that they fear the Jiang Shi: the hopping vampire.

Yeren

In the remote forests of the western part of China’s Hubei province people believe passionately in the existence of the Yeren- the "wild men". The creatures have been believed in since time immemorial and sightings are frequently reported even today.