Dalingshan is steeped in a relatively modern history. It was from here that the famous Dongjiang Column (later known as 3rd Brigade of the Dongjiang Column) took up anti-Japanese guerrilla fighting from their base in Dawangling Village and masterminded counterattacks not only in the Guangdong region, but also in the New Territories and Kowloon, Hong Kong.
Dalingshan is on the busy thoroughfare of the National Road 107 which stretches all the way up through the country and is a precursor to the freeways that are the current standard of inter-province travel, as such this means Dalingshan is a busy town. Some of the famous names are based here such as Toyota and Fuji-Xerox. Dalingshan is also known for its furniture production and holds the title of “No. 1 Town in Furniture Export of China.”
In 2002 the cultural square was completed with the aim to give at least one activity per day, one performance per week and a different theme each month. The square is a focal point for residents where they take up regular exercise and enjoy the surroundings.
What Can I Do?
If we go into Dalingshan or Daling Mountain we can find the area is abound with flora and fauna. Taking a quiet drive around the mountain takes about an hour without stopping and along the way there are many side-roads that can get you lost. Around the mountain there are numerous points to park and go deep into the wooded mountainside along pre-determined routes that can have you walking for hours, just try not to forget where you left the car.
Another interesting point along the way is the abundance of goat-farmers who have dozens of goats grazing in the fields. During the right time of the year
Dalingshan is famous for its Lychee groves that encourage you to come and pick-your-own for a small fee, eating them directly from the tree is also allowed and no time-limit is imposed so try to eat as many as you can.
Being the former base of the Dongjiang Column it would only be right that a museum commemorating their heroic battles would be built here and it is the site next to
Dawangling village that was selected. Here is an exhibition venue covering around 5,300 sq. meters with 2,000 sq. meters of exhibition area, while the rest is dedicated to parkland available for perusing and enjoying the fresh air. At the museum there are many displays featuring anti-Japanese war efforts from around the country and has some interesting exhibits that feature lighting and sound to give a real feel of the times. In total there are over 140 cultural relics from the Dongjiang Column along with 450 pictures and artwork. The Memorial of Dongjiang Column is also a National Youth Education Base.
If you are a food lover then Dalingshan is your second home, but maybe not if you’re a dog person. In Dalingshan they have a saying: “delicious snake, beautiful goose and fragrant dog meat.” True to the phrase they serve snake soup, Dalingshan roast goose and dog meat casserole. Other traditional foods are based mainly on the Hakka local style that is predominant in the town and the dog meat casserole is the most famous local dish according to the locals I met.
Dalingshan also has within its borders the Camdor Harbour Golf Club which has 18 holes set among hilly grounds making it a challenging and beautiful course built along the Songzi Lake.
Being located on the 107 means Dalingshan is easily accessible from downtown Dongguan. If driving it should take around 30 minutes, although at present, due to construction on the roads, there are a few bottlenecks that can make the journey a little longer.
To get directly to the Dongjiang column you should take the K2, which takes you to downtown Dalingshan then transfer to the local No.4 or No.6.
Location: South East Dongguan
Area: 110 sq. kilometers
Journey Time: Around 30 minutes
Local Attractions: Local Hakka Cuisine, The Memorial of Dongjiang Column, Cultural Square, downtown Dalingshan, Camdor Harbour Golf Course