Yonghe Lamasery (also known as The Lama Temple, 雍和宫 in Chinese) is located at the northeast corner of the Beijing city. It is considered as the largest and most perfectly preserved lamasery in China.
The construction of Beijing Yonghe Lamasery can be dated back in 1694 during the Qing Dynasty. Emperor Yongzheng was living at Yonghe Lamasery when he was a prince. After Emperor Yongzheng died, his son Emperor Qianlong reconstructed the Yonghe Lamasery and changed it to a lamasery in 1744. Since then Yonghe Lamasery became the national centre of Lama administration.
It is a stunning example of Chinese imperial architecture and features Tibetan, and Qing Dynasty imperial architectural styles. The lamasery occupies an area of over 66,400 square meters and consists of five main halls and a large number of secondary halls. Main halls of Yonghe Lamasery consists of Falun Hall, Tianwang Hall/Yonghe Gate, Zhaotai Gate, Yonghegong Palace, Yongyoudian Hall and Wanfuge Palace.
Falun Hall – Beijing Yonghe Lamasery Travel
Falun Hall is unique in the lamasery for its layout and design. The hall is built with a gilded vase and five copper gilded, Tibetan styled towers on its roof. The hall was the location for Lamas to read Buddhist Sutras and conduct ceremonies.
There is a 6.1 meter high sculpture of Lama Tsongkhapa sitting on a giant lotus base in the center of the Falun Hall. Behind the sculpture is a mountain with 500 Arhats carved of red sandalwood. Each Arhat is unique and was crafted of gold, silver, copper, iron, and tin.
Tianwang Hall/Yonghe Gate – Beijing Yonghe Lamasery Travel
The gilded sculpture of Monk Budai is sitting at the center of this hall. Four Heavenly Kings are situated on each side of the Monk Budai sculpture.
Zhaotai Gate – Beijing Yonghe Lamasery Travel
Mounted with three gatehouses, the Zhaotai Gate is the front gate of Yonghe Lamasery. The gate has three arched openings guarded by huge wooden doors. The central opening was for the exclusive use of the emperor. Located in front of this gate are a drum tower, a bell tower, and two stele pavilions.
Yonghegong Palace – Beijing Yonghe Lamasery Travel
Yonghegong is the main palace of the Yonghe Lamasery. Inside the palace, there are statues of Kasyapa Mantanga, Maitreya, and The Buddha. On both sides of the hall are 18 Arhats, which are The Buddha’s disciples.
Yongyoudian Hall – Beijing Yonghe Lamasery Travel
Originally, Emperor Yongzheng’s living room, and the place where his coffin was placed before being moved to his tomb, Yongyoudian Hall houses a statue of Bhaisajya-guru.
Wanfuge Palace – Beijing Yonghe Lamasery Travel
Wanfuge (Pavilion of Ten Thousand Happinesses) is the tallest building in Yonghe Lamasery complex. Inside this pavilion there are tens of thousands of Buddhas displayed along every level, and in the centre there is an enormous statue of Maitreya positioned on a white marble base.
|Admission Fee:||CNY 25|
|Opening Hours:||9:00 to 17:00|
|Recommended Time for a Visit:||1.5 hours|
Subway Line 2: get off at Yonghegong Station, get out of the station from Exit C (Southwest Exit), and walk south about 400 meters, then you’ll find it on the east side of the road.
Subway Line 5: get off at Yonghegong Station, and get out of the station from Exit C (Southeast Exit).
Take bus 13, 116 or 117 and get off at Yonghegong Station.
Take bus 18, 44(小), 44(大), 62, 75, 116, 606, 800(内), 800(外), 909 or 特2 and get off at Yonghegong Qiao Dong Station.
Take bus 125 and get off at Yonghegong Qiao Bei Station.