Located in Qixia Temple on Qixia Hill in Naniing, the pagoda is said to have been built originally in 602 during the Sui Dynasty, but it was destroyed later. During the Five Dynasties Gao Yue and Lin Ren of the Nantang regime (937-975) had the pagoda rebuilt. The existing pagoda is believed to be that building.
The octagonal pagoda of five storeys, about fifteen meters high, was built entirely of stone. The lower part is an exquisitely carved stone pedestal with lotus petals in three layers. The first storey is proportionally high, and the five levels of eaves extend far from the body of the pagoda.
The value of the Sarira Pagoda at Qixia Temple lies not only in that it is one of a few multi-eared pagodas from the Five Dynasties in south China, but also, and more important, in that it is covered with exquisite, beautiful carvings. It can be regarded as a gigantic work of art. All the carvings and ornamental patterns on it are extremely refined and charming, including sea waves, fish, crabs, shrimp and other things on the base, relief sculptures of the eight images of Buddha around the pedestal, guardian attendants, small Buddhas, eaves, roof tile ridges, and ornaments on the roof corners on the body, and ornamental patterns and sculptures on the steeple.