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Beijing Top Ten Temples to Visit during Chinese New Year


No. I: Yonghe Temple(雍和宫): the Biggest Lamasery in Beijing

Feature: Once the mansion of Qing Emperor Yongzheng before he came the throne, Yonghe Tempmle is the biggest Tibetan Buddhist temple in Beijing. It is also the most popular Mecca among monks, pilgrims and commoners.

"man should visit Yonghe Temple, while lady should visit Huoluo Temple". Rumors had it that Buddha here can guarantee all your wishes come true. The endless flow of pilgrims to this temple testifies to its palpable spiritual energy and timeless allure. The 1st and 15th lunar day will saw Yonghe Temple mobbed with pilgrims. Photo opportunities abound, however.

Highlight 1: A 12m-tall bronze statue of Tsong Khapa, the founder of the Yellow Hat Sect of Tibetan Buddhism

Highlight 2: A hill studded with over 500 arhats made of gold, silver, copper, iron and tin

Highlight 3: Fabulous murals illustrating the life of the Buddha adore the east and west walls

Highlight 4 A rare sand mandala preserved under glass on the west side of the building

Highlight 5: A 18m-high effigy of the Buddha, with an additional 8m underground, which was carved from a single Tibetan sandal wood tree.

Timetable of Festivities

Jan 1(lunar month): New Year Grand Pray Festival
monks chant the Buddhist scriptures to pray for the wellbeing of Beijingnese and the prosperity of the county

Apr 13-15(lunar month): Buddha's Birthday: It commemorates the birth, convension and nirvana of the Buddha.

Dec 8(lunar month): Laba Festival: Monks chant sutras and hand out bowls of Laba porridge in front of the Hall of Heavenly Kings, for free.

Add: 12, Yonghegong Street, East District, Beijing
Tel: 86-21-64044499
Hour: 9:00--16:30 (Apr. 1 to Oct. 31) 9:00 to 16:00 (Nov. 1 to Mar. 31)
Explore Time: 1.5 hours
Fee: ¥25
Get in: Bus Te 2, Te 12, 909, 116, 684, 62, 13, 44, 18, 75, get off at Yonghegong Qiao Dong Station.
Metro Line 5: Get off at Yonghegong Station, and get out of the station from Exit C (Southeast Exit).
yonghe palace beijing absolutechinatours

No.2. Tanzhe Temple (潭拓寺): the Most Ancient Temple in Beijing

Feature: Tanzhe Temple is a sparkling gem cradling at the foot of 9 undulating hills. Revered as the most ancient temple in Beijing and the biggest temple in the outskirt , Tanzhe allures not only for its 1700-year-old history, but also for its astounding complexes spreading along a north-south axis. During its heydays, over 999 quarters stood here. Nowadays, 937 rooms, survive and thrive. It is said even the mighty Forbidden City, which boasts 9999 rooms, was modeled on it. Its resplendent pray halls, unstirred meditation rooms,flower-peppered gardens and incense-perfumed courtyards, promise endless vistas.

Emperor Kangxi and Guangxu all came here to pray. It was also a choice destination among imperial courts and officials during the Qing Dynasty.

Guide to Pray
The Maitreya Buddha Statue in the first Hall of Heavenly King is in charge of promotion in career
The Guanyin statue in the West Guanyin Cave can bring you good health, promotion in career
The Great Buddha's Hall, which is devoted to Sakyamni, can ensures all your wishes come true

Timetable of Festivals
During the past, locals also throng the Dragon King Temple and pray in front of the stone fish, for timely rain

Jan1(Lunar calendar): It is the birthday of Maitreya. It is alive with fervent religious rituals.

During Chinese New Year(Spring Festival), assorted activities will be staged, such as knock the bells for 108 times.

During the 1st and 15th day of each lunar month, it stages festivities to bring in good luck

When April sets in, its two 500-year-old Magnolia trees will come in full blossoms.Many people flock in to see their stunning petals. One kind of precious herb trees also thrive here. It is said its leaves, trucks and flowers possess magical medicinal property. Maybe too powerful,for they are dug out to the verge of distinction.

Add: Tantuo Mountain, Mentougou District
Tel: 86-10-6-861699
Hour: Summer: 8:00 to 16:30 Winter: 8:30 to 16:00
Fee: ¥55
Get in: Take Bus 7 at Qianmen,or Bus 931 at Pingguoyuan.
Metro Line 1: get off at Xice Bus Station(西侧公交站), change to Bus 931 and get off at the terminal.
beijing tianzhe temple

No.3. Jietai Temple (戒台寺): it has the Biggest Ordination Platform in China

Feature: Jietai Temple boats the biggest ordination platform in China. The ordination ritual is the most sacred ritual for monks. During the 14th century, the permission from an emperor was required to carry out this ritual. In addition to mansions, pavilions, courtyards and corridors, its ancient trees and exotic flowers well worth sightseeing. Wander at random through the cobbled laneways and secluded corridors and you’ll come across pray halls, residences and pavilions, offering rare insight into various aspects of life in old China.

Timetable of Festivals
Chinese New Year Eve: strike the bell for 108 times for good luck
Double Fifth Festival: give out Zongzi (Glutinous Rice Dumplings, wear scented pocket bags and strike the bell to pray for good luck.etc.
Apr to May: Lilac Festival

Add: Mt Ma’anshan, southeast of Mentougou District, Beijing
Tel: 86-10-69805941
Hour: 8:00--17:30
Fee: ¥45
Get in: Bus: 931, get off at Jietaisi Bus stop
How far away from Beijing: 25km
Since: 581~600
beijing jietai temple

No.4. Dajue Temple(大觉寺): Temple perfumed by Mongolia Blossoms


Feature: The over 946-year-old Dajue Temple faces east, which reflects the Qidan tribe’s sun-worship tradition. Buddhist mansions occupy the central axis, north of it sit the living quarters of the monks, south of it spread the temporary residences of emperors. It is home to a 300-year-old magnolia tree and a millennium-old ginkgo tree. The spring and summer blossoms bring a fragrant and floral aspect to the gardens, especially in the heavy petals of its Magnolia grandiflora.

Add: Anhe Township, Sujiatuo Town, Haidian District, Beijing
Tel: 86-10-62456163
Hour: 8:00--17:30
Fee: ¥20
Get in: Bus 346,633
How far from downtown Beijing: 23km
Since: 1068
How far away from Beijing: 70km
dajue temple
dajue temple 

No5. Yunju Temple(云居寺): an Walled museum with the biggest collection of stone tablets

Literally means “Temple amid Clouds”, Yunju Temple is noted for 14,278 pieces of stone tablets bearing sutras scripts. It took over 1039 years to carve them. These relics crystallize almost every aspect of the past dynasties. It is the biggest, oldest and best-preserved sutras on earth. Over 22,000 volumes of paper sutras, 77,000 pieces of wooden sutras as well as over 10 stone-brick pagodas with distinctive styles, well worth sightseeing.

See and Do
During spring, people go here to plant a lucky tree, or enjoy the blossoms from April to May. In April 8(lunar calendar), the birthday of the Buddha, Yunju Temple radiates for the mesmerizing activities occurring here.

Add: Dashiwo Town, Fangshan District,Beijing
Tel: 86-10-61389612
Hour: 8:00--16:30
Fee: ¥40
Get in: Bus 917(Shi Du Subline), get off at Yunjusi Bus Stop.
Take Train 7085 at Beijing South Train Station and get off at Yunjusi Bus Stop
beijing yunju temple

No. 6 Fahai Temple(法海寺): the Oasis of Frescoes

Feature: Fahai Temple boasts the most intact and biggest Ming-era murals across China. From some sense, it rival Mogao Grottoes’. Spanning 236.7 square meters, these murals depicting Buddha, Bodhisattva and flying Apsaras, are bright, vivid and infectious.
Add: Moshikou Village, Shijingshan District, Beijing
Tel: 86-10-88255260
Hour: 9:00--16:00
Fee: ¥20. An extra fee of RMB 100 is needed to see murals in the Great Buddha’s Hall (photo forbidden)
Get in: Bus 336、959、746、941、977, get off at Shougang Community
Since: 1439
beijing fahai temple

No. 7 Fayuan Temple(法源寺): sutras and the Biggest Inclined Buddha in Beijing

Feature: The over 1,300-year-old Fayuan Temple is one of the oldest in Beijing. Along its south-north axis rise its main mansions and halls. China Buddhism Institute is housed here. Its dazzling collection of Buddhist scriptures and books, are one of the biggest and most prized throughout China. Buddha statues spaning over 1000 years can be found in its innermost chamber. Among them, the Ming-era wooden effigy of Buddha on the cusp of entering nirvana, is the most precious. It is the biggest inclined Buddha in Beijing.

Add: 7 Qianjie, Fayuan Temple, Xicheng District, Beijing
Tel: 86-10-63533966
Hour: 8:30 to 11:30;13:00 to 15:30 (closed in each Wednesday)
Fee: ¥5
Get in: Bus 381,603,613, get off at Nanhengjie Street or Bus 626 and get off at Niujienankou Bus stop
Since: 645AD
beijing xuanwu fayuan temple

No.8.  Guanghua Temple (广化寺)

Its convenient location in downtown Beijing makes your odyssey less frustrating. Its 329 mansions are grouped into three clusters. Its core buildings along a north-south axis, is flanked by meditation rooms, study rooms and dining rooms to the east, as well as living quarters and retirement rooms of the eminent monks to the west. Its quadrangle houses containing small ones inside, which, in return, makes your exploration especially engaging. The beauty of Guanghua Temple culminates during September when chrysanthemum blossom large and vividly.
Fee: ¥20
Add: 31, Ya’er Hutong, Xicheng District, Beijing
Tel: 86-10-64076395
Hour: Jan 1 to 15 (all the mansions are opened to the public), the rest of the year, it is partially opened

No.9. Imperial Temple of Emperors (历代帝王庙)

Feature: The mere mention of its name sends a shudder down the spine of temple enthusiasts. It is an epic shrine to Chinese emperors from various dynasties. Over 188 emperors, 79 eminent government officials as well as Guan Yu, are worshiped here. It is one of its kind in entire China.

Add: 131, Fuchengmen, Xicheng District, Beijing
Tel: 86-10-66120186
Fee: ¥20
Get in: Bus 101、102、103、13、42、409、603、709、812、814、823、846、850and get off at Baitasi Bus stop
Since: 1530
 beijing imperial temple of emperors

No. 10. Beijing White Pagoda Temple (北京白塔寺)


Feature: It is a 50.9m-tall three-storey pagoda that gives the Jokhang both its name and spiritual potency. As China’s oldest and biggest Tibetan pagoda, this stone-brick structure is designed by a Nepalese architect in 1271. Its tappers to the sparkling gilded summit topped with a huge copper umbrella. This auspicious umbrella is fringed with bells, sutras and Buddha motifs.
Add: 171,Fuchengmen Inner Street,Beijing
Tel: 86-10-66160211
Fee: ¥20
Get in: Bus 823、695、604、42, get off at Baitasi Bus Stop
 beijing white pagoda temple
Author: Sophia          Posted on Jan 18, 2014
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