The four Chinese Buddhist Mountains are each believed to be dominated by a major buddha; Mount Putuo is regarded as the sacred mountain of Guanyin, the Goddess of Mercy, and so statues of Guanyin are a dominant theme here. In Chinese Buddhism, Guanyin has been popular among ordinary worshipers for the belief that the buddha is able to save people from poverty, disease and sorrow.
On the Peak of Longwui hill stands a 33m statue of the grand Buddha, erected in 1997 in bronze and gold. Since the completion of this imposing statue, the Buddha has been visited and worshipped by millions of pilgrims annually. The statue itself is a great piece of art, visable by boat far from the island. Today, the statue has become one of Mount Putuo's most symbolic sights.
There's a little village near Puji Si with lovely winding streets and shops filled with religious offerings. Definately take a stroll through the backstreets...
At the center of the village is a square containing a large lily pond -- just off this central square is Putuoshan's oldest temple, Puji Si, whose yellow tiled roofs and sweeping eaves are overshadowed by the spreading branches of massive trees. I'd recommend spending an hour or two exploring Puji Si and the area nearby.
I had both lunch and dinner here. Everything was nice. My lunch was vegetarian and they did a good job on that too.
The boat leaves Shanghai around 9.15am, it takes 2 hours and 30 mins to Putuoshan.
There is an RMB60 general admission to the island.