It is part of the Moganshan National Park and at its base is the small village of Moganshan.
Known for its cool temperatures during the scorching summers, it has long been the playground of the Shanghai elite in the past. Today, Moganshan mixes a country lifestyle with a mix of local inns and old villas built early in the 20th century.
According to Chinese legend, in the Spring and Autumn Period of 770- 476 BC, China’s most talented swordsmith Ganjiang, arrived in the mountains. It was here that he cast and forged a pair of special swords on the demand of the Emperor of Wu. Gan’s wife was called Moye, hence the name Mogan Mountains and the main tourist attraction Sword Pond.
The crisp refreshing breezes of Mogan Mountain first enchanted foreigners in the 1880’s, where rooms and houses were rented from locals. This ideal summer retreat soon attracted the foreign community in Shanghai who came together, dug deep into their pockets and bought the mountain top for 50 dollars.
Large European style villas, houses, churches and public halls were built for missionaries, businessmen, customs officials and their families. Many of these villas and houses are still standing, with some being turned into hotels and guesthouses operating today.
By 1910 approximately 300 foreigners, mostly Americans and British, had set up summer homes on the hill. The foreigners left the mountain top with the rise of the Communist party in 1949, where the villas were handed out to different work units or “danwei’s” from Hangzhou and Shanghai.
Moganshan is a major bamboo area, with lush bamboo forests on its slopes and surrounding areas.
Moganshan receives a variety of Chinese and foreign visitors for relaxation, hiking, and visiting a variety of scenic and historical spots, including the post-WWII villa of Chiang Kai-shek.