We left on Saturday morning and actually took a bus for part of the mountain, since it would be far too long to hike the whole time. When we got off, we had to walk on a path to the temples. But before this walk I think I had three separate warnings about the monkeys. The monkeys are mean and want to take whatever food you may have. I was even told that another student in the past actually got bitten and they had to go to the hospital. So I was pretty worried. But when we got there it was not too bad. We saw about five monkeys on a roof of a building, but they were not really concerned about us. After that walk, we had to take an extremely crowded cable car. By crowded, I mean I was pressed against the wall. It was a pretty short trip though, so we got to experience fresh air pretty quickly.
The top of the mountain was beautiful. There were statues of elephants all along the steps to the temple and around the temple. We were not able to see the outside of the large temple because they are working on preserving it, but we still got to go inside which was nice. There was a giant Buddha standing tall all plated in gold with several smaller Buddha statues around the room. As you walked along the wall, you could look at each one. The pillars had really beautiful engravings as well. The main impression that stayed with me was the gold. It was everywhere. It continued into the next temple. In there, I think I saw over a hundred Buddha statues at once, from tiny to large. There was even a mural inside the temple. Walking around the top of the mountain, you felt like you were inside the clouds. Everywhere you looked was white. We even went to the edge of the mountainside and it felt like the edge of the world.
These sights were beyond beautiful and totally worth all the travel time.