Dazhao Temple

Dazhao TempleDazhao Temple

 

Dazhao Temple (Dazhao si), situated in the old quarter of Hohhot to the southwest of the train station, is the largest Gelukpa (Yellow Hat Sect) temple in town. First established in 1579 during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644 AD) and rebuilt in 1640, Dazhao Temple received fame in the early periods of the Qing Dynasty through a visit by the Emperor Kangxi. After his soujournment, a few days, the temple was dedicated to him, and a gold tablet proclaiming in characters "Long Live the Emperor" was set before the silver Sakyamuni. In respect to this imperial favor, from this time onwards the temple also became one of the few in the province that nullified the practice of choosing a new living Buddha after the old had passed away.

The complex of the Dazhao Temple is also known as the Silver Buddha Temple (Yinfo si), after the 400-year-old statue of Sakyamuni inside, that was cast mostly from silver. The Temple holds many interesting artifacts, including some antique Buddhist scriptures and many musical instruments. The Dazhao Temple is interesting if you are into your Chinese architecture, especially of the Ming Dynasty period. Despite recent renovations, there are a few halls that retain their original style, especially the well preserved Ming wooden hall that holds the silver Buddha and various murals depicting the emperor's visit. If this does not hold your attention, then the houses around the temple are also of interest, old, adobe constructions with colored glass windows, and small windy lanes.

How to get there:
It is just 15 minutes walk south of the Great Mosque, along Tongdao nanjie to Danan jie. 

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