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Updated by Joanna James on Jul 27, 2020
Headline for Five Places to Worship in Xian – A Melting Pot of Religious Places
Joanna James Joanna James
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Five Places to Worship in Xian – A Melting Pot of Religious Places

One of the oldest cities in China, Xian thrives on various cultures and religions. It is also one of the three highly populous cities in Western China. At Xian, you'd be greeted with a myriad of temples, pagodas, and mosques where you can explore various religions.


Wolong Temple

Literally meaning the Sleeping Dragon Temple, the Wolong Temple is of Chinese Buddhist heritage that was built many centuries ago under the rule of Emperor Lingdi of the Han Dynasty. It is situated towards the north of the Forest of Stone Steles Museum in Xian. According to the details carved on a stone stele at this location, it is believed that the reign of the Han Dynasty prevailed through 168 and 189 AD. The Wolong Temple bore several names during its existence such as Fu Ying Chan Yuan Temple and Guanyin Temple until its present name was recorded. The name Wolong was that of a Buddhist monk who used to seek respite at this temple during his many travels.


Baxian An Temple

Draping the outskirts of Xian is the Baxian An Temple, which can be translated into "The Eight Immortals Temple." The significant Taoist temple in Xian is specifically named after the characters of Chinese mythology, which are highly revered by the Chinese Taoists, who believe that these immortals possess powers that can control life or annihilate evil. Sprawled over an area of 73,000 square metres, the Baxian An Temple, houses many halls depicting the hidden gems of a bygone era. Each hall offers something unique and mesmerising to its visitors. The third section brings you to the main hall where sacrifices are made to the Taoist deities.


Great Mosque

The oldest mosque in China, the Great Mosque is the oldest place of Islamic worship in the country, which holds a special significance to its Hui population. Located less than six kilometres away from a variety of accommodation in Xian the likes of Citadines Gaoxin Xian, it is the largest and the most carefully preserved mosque in China. Although this site is hidden down an alleyway that is full of street stalls and vendors, once, inside its premises, you'd be mind blown by its ornate gardens and the traditional Chinese design unlike the mosques found in other countries of the Islamic faith. Within a spectacular area of 6,000 square metres, it houses four courtyards that showcase various architectural gems such as tile-covered wooden arches belonging to the 17th century and furniture that dates back to the Ming and Qing Dynasties.


Daci'en Temple

Boasting of a history of over 1350 years, the Daci'en Temple is a world-famous Buddhist Temple. According to ancient records, this historic temple bore its name as Wulou Temple before being settled on its present name. It is said that a particular king of the Tang Dynasty expanded the temple site to commemorate his mother, and named it Daci'en, which means "to remember his mother's love." With many garrets and temples that juxtapose with the intricate architecture that is heavily influenced by Buddhism, this temple site offers beautiful vistas to its visitors.


Wang Ji Temple

A small but beautiful temple that is well-known in the city of Xian, the Wang Ji Temple is immersed in its cultural and historical significance. It was constructed in 705 when it was also considered as a place of significant political importance. Princess Taiping, who reigned during the construction of this temple, dedicated it to her mother, Empress Wu Zetian, and named the temple Wang Ji. It was obtained from a classical Chinese statement meaning "unlimited gratitude."

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