While most of Pandora in this year's blockbuster movie 'Avatar' is a figment of Mr. Cameron's vivid imagination, it seems that the 'hallelujah' or floating mountains' were inspired by an actual peak of quartz-sandstone that lies deep in the mountains of South Hunan in China.
The 3,554 ft. column is one of a number of jagged peaks that lie in the rugged terrain of the Zhangjiajie national forest and was until recently called the 'Southern Sky Column'.
However, after seeing the rush of people trying to get a glimpse of Earth's 'Hallelujah,' Chinese officials have changed its name to 'Avatar Hallelujah Mountain' and are now offering tours called 'Magical Tour to Avatar-Pandora' or 'Miracle Tour to Avatar's Floating Mountain'.
The government website that is marketing these tours entices tourists with taglines like - 'Pandora is far but Zhangjiajie is near' and, 'Welcome to Zhangjiajie to see Avatar's Hallelujah Mountains and see the real 'Pandora'.
We have no doubt that millions of people will flock to the site, given the frenzy the movie is still generating. Just earlier this week, with $1.84 billion USD in ticket sales, it became the top-grossing movie ever, surpassing Mr. Cameron's previous blockbuster 'Titanic'.