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Longhua Temple

Accolades

  • The pagoda used to be the tallest building in Shanghai until modern times.
  • The temple complex is the biggest temple complex in Shanghai.
  • It may be the most popular complex in terms of people visiting each year.
  • The 7-story pagoda is a Shanghai landmark.
Address2853 Longhua Lu, Xuhui, Shanghai.
Price:10 RMB and free incense.
TimeDaily 7 - 4:30 pm.
Recommended time for a visit:1.5 hours

How to Get There

1)Take bus 41, 44, 733, 734, 864, 809, 933 and get off at Longhua Station.
2)Take Subway Line 3 and get off at Longcao Road Station. Get out from Exit 1 and walk eastwards for 15 minutes to the temple.

Introduction

If you are having a Shanghai package tour,our Shanghai travel guide introduce you to see the Longhua Temple,which is one of the Shanghai tourist attractions,thus giving you a complete sightseeing in Shanghai.
Located on the Longhua Road at the south of the city, Longhua Park is famous for the ancient Longhua Temple, Longhua Pagoda, the Evening Bell-Striking Ceremony and the peach blossoms.

History

It isn't clear when a temple was first built in the location, but it is thought that some buildings and the Longhua Padoga were built during the era of the Song Dynasty. The brick tubular shell of the pagoda is said to have been first built in 977. The wooden staircase and the 7 roofs are said to be of recent construction. Most of the current buildings are thought to have been built in the middle to late 19th century during the Qing Dynasty era. There was a major reconstruction effort in 1954. With the help of donations from wealthy Overseas Chinese, a lot of money has been spent for restoration and upkeep, so the whole complex is well refurbished and well decorated.

Features

The Longhua Temple is the largest temple in Shanghai, and the pagoda is the only one in Shanghai that existed before modern times. It has a main south to north axis along which five of the buildings are located. The axis is 194 meters or 637 feet long. In order, the five buildings are the Maitreya Hall (Mile Dian), the Emperor of Heaven Hall (Tianwang Dian), the Grand Hall of the Great Sage (Daxiong Baodian), the Three Sages Hall (Sansheng Dian), and the Abbot's Hall (Fangzhang Shi). Along with these, other highlights are a vegetarian restaurant, the temple fair, a side room with 500 golden statues, the Bell and Drum Tower and the Longhua Pagoda.

Bell Tower & Drum Tower

These buildings are off the axis. In the Bell Tower, there is a bronze bell that weighs 3,000 kilograms or 3.3 tons. It was cast in 1894. On the evening of New Year's Eve on December 31st, it is a tradition to strike the bell 108 times to ring in the year. People can pay about 50 RMB or 7.50 USD to strike it three times. Bell ringing on New Year's Eve is a common tradition in Buddhist temples that have a bell in East Asia.

The Longhua Pagoda

The 33.7-meter-high ancient imperial Tian'anmen Gate on the northern side of the Tian'anmen Square actually comprises the Tian'anmen Rostrum, which is of typical traditional Chinese architectural style with 60 huge pillars. When the gate functioned as an imperial structure in the ancient time, it was the place on which imperial edicts were officially issued, e.g. emperors' ascending the throng and marriage, or sacrifice to the heaven.In front of Tian'anmen Gate is the Jinshui River , above which there are seven bridges made from white marble. The seven were used to strictly prescribed for people in different classes: the widest middle one for emperors only, the two on both sides of the middle for the imperial family, the more outside for official at three-grade and above (nine grades for classification of officials' positions in ancient China), and the outermost two for official at four-grade and below.

Room with 500 Golden Statues

Just outside of the main entrance of the third hall called the Daxiong Baodian where there is a big golden sitting Budda statue, there is a side hall where you can see 500 little gold statues arranged in rows. They shine and glitter in the light. From the austere courtyard with the smoke of fires and burning incense, the golden and bright statues are a striking contrast.

Temple Fair

There is a temple fair on the 3rd day of the 3rd month of the lunar calendar. During this time, people can see the peach blossoms.

Vegetarian Restaurant

It is common for active Buddhist complexes in China to have a vegetarian restaurant or cafeteria. There is one behind the fourth hall. It serves basic meals between 11 am and 2 pm.

The Grand Hall of the Great Sage (Daxiong Baodian)

The third hall will probably be the most impressive of the five main halls on the axis. In it, there is a big golden statue of Buddha along with several statues of arhats. Chanting music is played, and people bow and kneel in front of them.

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