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Wai Lingding Island

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Wai Lingding Island seen from the cove

Wai ("Outer") Lingding Island, a small island of some 4½ square kilometers under the jurisdiction of the Municipality of Zhuhai, Guangdong Province, is part of the Wanshan ("Ten Thousand Hills") Archipelago. Wai Lingding Island is situated about 7 nautical miles south of Hong Kong in the South China Sea, and about 30 nautical miles east of Macao, which, in turn, is just off the coast of mainland China south of Zuhai. The developed islands of the archipelago are serviced by ferries, of which some are high-speed catamarans.

Most of the islands of Wanshan Archipelago that are developed have been developed only in the recent past. The Chinese government undertook to offer the rights to these islands to certain individuals and entities who were deemed capable of developing the islands of the Wanshan Archipelago in a sustainable manner that would contribute to the welfare both of the islands and the islanders. Wai Lingding Island enjoys a reputation as a pearl among these developed islands, a place of unique beauty where time seems to stand still, so tranquil is the atmosphere on the island.

The island is renowned for its natural beauty, its fresh sea air and its mild climate. Situated where the mouth of the Pearl River meets the South China Sea, Wai Lingding Island is the perfect island hideaway for the tourist in search of peace, harmony, and beauty. It is also the venue for a number of conferences and retreats, both large and small. And because of the island's location in the food-rich, tranquil waters of the mouth of the Pearl River, the tourist may be rewarded with the sight of the highly sociable Chinese White Dolphin (Sousa chinensis chinensis), which feeds and breeds here.

Wai Lingding Island is beautiful in every respect: it is small and gracefully shaped with ample bays, its shoreline is defined by exquisite beaches in some places and peppered with exotic stones in others, its waters are crystal-clear, and – perhaps best of all – the island is not too touristy. The most prominent beaches are found at Lingding Bay, Tower Bay and Dadong Bay. They are ideal places not only for sun-bathing and swimming, but also for surfing and fishing. The island's sightseeing highlights include Wai Lingding Peak, the scenic area of Stone Park, the stone carvings on Mo Rock, the mirage on the Xiang River, and the morning bell of North Emperor Mountain. There is also an amusement park near the beach at Dadong Bay. There are excellent tourist facilities on the island, such as those offered by Lingding Sea Hotel and by Russian Mountain Resort.

Luxuriant flowers and vibrant trees grow in abundance on Wai Lingding Island year around. The island's highest peak, Lingding Apex, is some 310 meters above sea level. From the island's higher vantage points one can see numerous islands dotting the blue waters of the surrounding sea. On a clear day, the blue of the sea around Wai Lingding Island merges with the blue of the sky, creating one of the most radiantly blue backdrops that the tourist is likely ever to experience, causing sand, grass, trees and rocks – not to speak of boats of all sizes and shapes – to stand out sharply.

At sea on a day with scattered, low-lying clouds, the curtain of watery mists can suddenly lift before your eyes, magically revealing a brief glimpse of a quintessentially Chinese shore scene before the mists close again and the ephemeral experience seems like a mirage or a fantasy. At dusk on a cloudy or misty day, the rays of the setting sun catch the clouds and mists in a short-lived display of color that begins vibrant and fiery and ends in muted hues, and whose image is reflected onto the shiny surface of the sea, only broken here and there by the occasional profile of a sailboat or a fishing boat in the distance. Wai Lingding Island is truly an enchanted, unspoiled south-sea-island escape.