Located 70 kilometers (approx. 43 miles) northeast of Baotou, near a valley named Wudang Gou, the Wudangzhao Monastery is the biggest and the best preserved lama monastery in Inner Mongolia's Autonomous Region. 'Bada Gele Monastery' is its Tibetan name, meaning white lotus. 'Wudangzhao' in Mongolian means 'willow'. Willows are prosperous in the valley, thus the name.
Built in the Tibetan style, the Wudangzhao Monastery is a group of white architectures built on the hills according to the principles of physiognomy. The white monastery stands out against the background of the green trees, making it appear very majestic. The main buildings in the Wudangzhao Monastery are composed of six halls, three living Buddha residences, and a funeral hall where the relics of several living Buddhas are preserved.
The six halls are Suguqin Hall, Dongkuo'er Hall, Queyiri Hall, Dangge Xide Hall, Ahui Hall and Ribenlun Hall. The Suguqin Hall is the uppermost one where all the lamas in the monastery gather to recite the lections. The floor is covered with red carpet, and the walls are covered with the colorful paintings depicting Buddhist stories. Queyiri Hall is situated to the west of Suguqin Hall. The Laughing Buddha is worshipped here. The hall is in fact a department where the Buddhist sutra and the religious philosophy are studied. Dangge Xide Hall is also named Jingang Hall, for several Jingang Buddha statues are worshipped there. Dangqi Xide Hall is the smallest hall in the monastery with several Buddhist statues, among which the most notable one is a Buddha, named Daweide, who has nine heads, 34 arms and 16 feet. There are over 1,500 Buddhist statues and abundant fine murals which reflect the historical characters, customs, myths and beautiful landscape. All the collections in the Wudangzhao Monastery are precious materials for studying the history and culture of minorities.
Tips: Taking regular buses in the square out front of the eastern passenger transport station of Baotou, you will reach the monastery after a journey of about four hours.
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