Mountain Tianmu has an aged geologic foundation. At the end of Ordovician period, sea beds rose and folded to form terrene. The major body of the mountain was formed 150 million years ago in a strong volcanic orogenic movement called Yanshan Movement. This area is also known as “the sample of old glacier relic in east China”. Prominent crags, strange rocks and numerous valleys are magnificently spectacular. The beautiful natural landscape is featured by 4 streams, 5 pools, 6 caves, 7 gullies, 8 terraces, 9 ponds, 12 rocks, 27 stones, and 28 peaks. It is coined as “wonder mountain of Jiangnan” due to the fact that its particular geomorphology and unique Buddhism culture foster theprotection of flora and fauna of the region and Mountain Tianmu becomes a region with a large group of higher plants in China's central-subtropical forest zone. Mountain Tianmu Nature Reserve preserves the representative forest vegetation of the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River. The forest landscapes are known as “ancient, giant, high, rare, plentiful, beautiful”. “Ancient”: Mountain Tianmu preserves living “fossil” of the Mesozoic Era such as wild ginkgo, a survivor plant. This species in naturally wild form is found only in Mountain Tianmu Nature Reserve across the world. There is a natural scene of wild ginkgo family called “five generationsliving together”. “Giant”: Mountain Tianmu is famed for “giant trees with huge baldachins”. There are almost 400 trees with a diameter of 1 meter or larger. This gives a good name of “the Kingdom of Giant trees” to Mountain Tianmu. “High”: the golden larch (Pseudolarix kaempferi Gord.) here is the highest among the same species in China. The highest one is about 56 meters high, coined as “skyrocketing tree”. “Rare”: there are many unique tree species in Mountain Tianmu, among which the foremost is Tianmu ironwood (Ostrya rehderiana), which is on the edge of extinction worldwide. Only 5 survivors are found in Mountain Tianmu. Other rare and precious trees are Jambolan tree (Emmenopterys henryiOliv), Leading spring tree (Euptelea pleiospermum Hook.f.et Thoms), Katsura tree (Cercidiphyllum japonicum Sieb.et Zucc.), Tapiscia sinensis Oliv. etc. “Plentiful”: the vegetable species of Mountain Tianmu Nature Reserve is so plentiful that it enjoys the name of “Natural Arboretum”. “Beautiful”: numerous plants form a splendid forest picture. The beautiful scenes of tree and branches and layers of mountains can be seen in all seasons.
Mountain Tianmu enjoys obvious location advantages. It is on “the golden tourist line” between two national tourist places of Hanzhou and Mountain Huangshan. It possesses the easy access to Shanghai and Hanzhou in its east, Nanjing in its north and the Lake of Thousand Islands in its south. Fantastic natural scenery, pleasant montane climate, centuries-old religious cultures, convenient transportation and perfect accommodative facilities all make Mountain Tianmu a famous tourist attraction, a summer resort, and a scientific exploration spot.