Places of Worship in Xian Tour (Self Guided), Xian

Xian looks like a melting pot of different cultures and religions in Asia. If you visit the places of worship in this city you will realize this. Here you can admire pagodas, temples (holy places for Buddhists) and mosques (place of worship for the followers of Islam). If you like exploring other religions you will enjoy taking this self-guided tour.
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Places of Worship in Xian Tour Map

Guide Name: Places of Worship in Xian Tour
Guide Location: China » Xian (See other walking tours in Xian)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 6
Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 7.5 Km or 4.7 Miles
Author: helenp
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • West Wutai Temple
  • Great Mosque
  • Du Xian City God Temple
  • Wolong Temple
  • Wang Ji Temple
  • Baxian An Temple
1
West Wutai Temple

1) West Wutai Temple

The Wutai temple is situated in the western part of Xian city. The temple is located far away from the tourist zone, which isolates it from all the noise and bustle. The design of the exterior is outstanding - the temple is situated on a high stone foundation. Once you climb the stairs, you can enjoy a picturesque, panoramic view of the city.
2
Great Mosque

2) Great Mosque (must see)

The Great Mosque in Xian is the place of worship of the Muslim population especially the Hui people. It is the oldest, largest and best preserved mosque in China.

The Great Mosque was built in Xian during the reign of the Tang Dynasty in 742 AD. Several additions were made to the original structure during the reigns of the Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties. Xian is located at the beginning of the historic Silk Route and Muslim traders from other parts of Asia came here for purchasing silk and selling products from their respective countries.

The Great Mosque has a traditional Chinese design unlike those in Arabia and Persia. There are no minarets. The Mosque complex covers an area of 6000 square meters and has four courtyards. The first courtyard has a tile covered wooden arch constructed in the 17th century. There are chambers on either side with furniture dating back to the Ming and Qing Dynasties. The second courtyard has a stone arch and steles engraved with calligraphy. The main prayer hall with enough space to accommodate a thousand worshippers is found in the fourth courtyard. It is the only mosque open to visitors in China. Non Muslims are not permitted to visit the main prayer hall when prayer is in session.
3
Du Xian City God Temple

3) Du Xian City God Temple

Du Xian City God Temple is situated in the center of Xian. This temple is very popular among locals, who visit it every week to pray and meditate. Though it is situated in the Muslim quarter, it has a typical Chinese exterior.
4
Wolong Temple

4) Wolong Temple

The Wolong Temple is a Chinese Buddhist temple located one block north of the Forest of Stone Steles Museum in Xian. Wo Long means Sleeping Dragon and the temple is also called the Sleeping Dragon Temple.

The Wolong Temple was built over 1800 years ago during the reign of Emperor Lingdi of the Han Dynasty between 168 and 189 AD according to the details recorded in a stone stele. It was called the Fu Ying Chan Yuan temple during the reign of the Sui Dynasty. During the reign of the Tang Dynasty, a painting of Guanyin, Bodhisattva associated with compassion, by artist Wu Doazi was installed here and the name was changed to the Guanyin temple. It got its present name, Wolong Temple, between 976 and 997 when the emperor Taizong of the Song dynasty ruled Xian. The name was that of a revered Buddhist monk who rested within the temple after his many travels.

In 1901, the Emperor Guagxu and the Empress Dowager Cixi fled to Xian after the boxer Rebellion. They expanded the temple and ordered statues from Mongolia and Tibet. There is also a large bell cast in the year 1033. The recently restored Wolong temple continues to be an active place of worship for Buddhists in Xian.
5
Wang Ji Temple

5) Wang Ji Temple

Xian city has many important historical sites and Wang Ji Temple is one of the most well-known among them. It is a small, but beautiful temple, constructed in 705 by princess Taiping. In its heyday the temple used to be the place of considerable political importance. Wang Ji Temple was dedicated to princess Taiping's mother, Empress Wu Zetian, and obtained its name from the Classical Chinese statement “wang ji”, meaning “unlimited gratitude”.
6
Baxian An Temple

6) Baxian An Temple

Baxian An Temple, or "The Eight Immortals Temple", is situated on the outskirts of Xian. It is the biggest and most popular Taoist temple in the city. The Eight Immortals represent characters of Chinese mythology, especially esteemed by the Taoists. Each Immortal possesses a supernatural power that can either give life or annihilate evil.

The Ba Xian Temple covers an area of 73,000 square meters. It has five halls in the entrance dedicated to the Taoist Protector Deity, Wang Lingguan. The next section has two halls. The hall at the back has painted figures of the eight immortals, Han Zhongli, Zhang Guolao, Han Xiangzi, Tieguai Li, Cao Guojiu, Lv Dongbin, Lan Caihe and He Xiangu who are regarded as guardian angels. The third section has the main hall where sacrifices were made to important Taoist deities. Taoist monks still reside in the nearby monastery and perform rituals here even today.

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