There are many Buddhist temples all over China. During the last decade, religion has been more openly practiced in the country and some of the oldest temples are starting to get enough attention to being rebuilt and conserved. Some of the temples are declared UNESCO World Heritage Sites which proves their cultural and architectural value.
Most important Buddhist temples in China
Temple of the Azure Clouds
Also known as Biyunsi, the temple is located the eastern part of the Western Hills in Beijing. The temple was built in the early 14th century and was extend in the 16th century and again in 1748. In 1954, the temple was rebuilt and renovated. Inside the grounds you can find the Bell Tower and Drum Tower.
Jade Buddha Temple
The temple is located in Shanghai and was founded in 1882. It contains several important Buddha statues including two reclining Jade Buddha statues (a smaller one and a larger one). The temple contains a public restaurant where vegetarian dishes can be served (one of the most popular is “double mushroom noodles”)
This is an ancient temple located in Dengfeng in Henan province. The temple contains Chinese pagodas built during the Tang Dynasty (618-907). Inside the square-based stone tower there is a shrine and a jade statue of Buddha.
Fa Yuan Temple
It is also known as the Temple of the Origin of the Dharma and is located in the Xuanwumen area in Beijing. It’s one of the most important Buddhist temples in the capital. Its present name dates from 1734 and it was built to honor the officers and soldiers who lost their lives in battles. The temple comprises and area of 6,700 square meters (1.7 acres) and contains a lot of cultural artifacts. In the past the temple was also famous for its lilac gardens.
The temple is located close to the city of Hangzhou in Zhejiang province. It was originally built in 598. The temple has 600 rooms in 14 different halls. This was the temple where Chinese Buddhism branched away from Buddhist teachings and doctrine commonly found in India.
This is one of the most important tourist attractions in the Datong area. The temple was built more than 1400 years ago and is unique both for its location — built into a cliff — but also because it includes Buddhist, Taoist, and Confucian elements.