Nine Carp Lake is located in Zhongshan Town, Xianyou. I recommended tourists from nearby cities like Fuqing and Quanzhou to come at weekends, enjoying fresh air in the mountain and different scenery.
In the scenic spot, walk as indicated by signboards, and you will pass Lei Hong Ji and Tongxian Bridge. From the Relic of Ancient Glaciers, pass a winding track downhill, and you will catch sight of Zhu Lian Ji - the most magnificent waterfall in Nine Carp Lake, measuring 45 meters high. I think Zhu Lian Ji is the highlight of Nine Carp Lake as water pours down, creating thunder-like sounds and white splashes.
According to the website of Nine Carp Lake, rainbow will emerge over Zhu Lian Ji if the sun shines again after rain, however I didn't get the sight of rainbow even though rain stopped and the sun shines at the time I reached there. Walk on along mountain tracks, you will reach the ticket office of Dong Feng Zhai. If you don't buy the ticket for Dong Feng Zhai, you have to walk a longer distance uphill and then downhill to see the last cascade - Shi Men Ji. I found some tourists taking this time-consuming way. In fact, when those tourists finally reached Shi Men Ji after a long walk, they had to return via the same route to leave the scenic spot.
In my opinion, the tour of Nine Carp Lake is not complete with Dong Feng Zhai. With RMB 25, you can enjoy following benefits:
1. You can see Shi Men Ji after the chain bridge instead of walking a long distance (Walk uphill from the ticket office and then downhill to a place below the fall). I returned halfway because staff warned me of snakes there, and tracks (steps) are getting steeper.
2. Touring Dong Feng Zhai through chain bridge is in fact a process of mountain climbing, and you can see sceneries in the distance from the high which are not available in the area of Nine Carp Lake. However, it was a pity that I didn't find the 100 meter high fall indicated by the map in the ticket. In Dong Feng Zhai, I saw a white fall in the distance, wondering whether it was the fall that I missed. What's more, you can enjoy different scenery at the other side of Dong Feng Zhai: rocks extrude on the mountain and a long wide valley stretches down, at the end of which lies a building (maybe Kowloon Valley). These beautiful sceneries are rare to see at ordinary times.
3. Leave Dong Feng Zhai, turn right and walk up a few meters to a smooth concrete road. You can take battery cart (price included) here back to the gate. No need to climb steps on the way back. As walking on mountain trails is a big challenge for me and my legs often ache in less than 10 minutes for stairs climbing, I decided to buy the ticket so as to enjoy a ride of battery cart.
1. Find at least one companion on weekdays for better photo taking.
2. High-heel shoes are not recommended given tough and steep steps.
3. Apply floral water before trip to prevent irritation of wild plants or mosquito bites.
4. Be sure to buy the ticket of Dong Feng Zhai, or you will miss a lot. I hope that visitors who visit in future can advise the staff to combine the ticket of Dong Feng Zhai and Nine Carp Lake.
5. The area is not very big, and two hours is enough to see all attractions roughly. One-day trip is recommended. You enjoy scenery along the way, play in waters and sit down for a rest when you are tired. Just take your time!