Top 10 attractions in Hangzhou, China

By Xu Lin
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 Lingyin Temple(灵隐寺)

Lingyin Temple, one of the 'top 10 attractions in Hangzhou, China' by

Lingyin Temple [File photo]

Lingyin Temple, or the Temple of the Soul's Retreat, is the oldest Buddhist monastery in Hangzhou. It was founded in 328, during the Eastern Jin Dynasty (316-420), by an Indian monk name Hui Li and has a history spanning over 1,700 years.

Sheltered by forested hills on three sides, the temple is a quiet and secluded sanctuary when it is not flooded with tourists. It is also one of China's largest and most visited Buddhist temples and holds the largest statue of the Buddha Sakyamuni sitting on a lotus throne.

During the Five Dynasties Period (907-960), when the temple was thriving, it consisted of nine buildings, 18 towers, 72 halls with 1,300 rooms and more than 3,000 monks. It has been damaged and restored again several times over the course of its extensive history.

Admission: 30 yuan (US$4.7)/person

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