The Lingyin Temple (灵隐寺) in Hangzhou was first built in AD 326 and it is among the top ten temples to visit in China, together with the renowned Shaolin Temple. With 1600 years of history it is a place for the devout Buddhists, a place to slow down your pace, and a place for “soul’s retreat” – the literal meaning of Lingyin Temple.
Like many other historical places in Hangzhou, the temple has been reconstructed many times, eventually employing an architectural layout from the late Qing dynasty (1644 – 1911). The most precious artifacts within the compound are the two stone pagodas built in 960 that miraculously survived wars and weathering.
The details on the stone pagodas.
While I don’t know for sure, the trees could be the next oldest thing in the temple, at 300 years old and they come with a special name tag!
It is splendid to walk around the compound with ancient trees providing shade and seeing many stand religiously praying to the deities. With incense burning in three huge censers, it adds a smoky, mysterious atmosphere to the temple, as long as the smoke doesn’t get into your eyes.
Within the Grand Hall of the Great Sage (大雄宝殿), there are lots of impressive Buddhist statues, like the Buddhists deity, Kuan Yin, who stands in a massive sea of Chinese folklore characters.
Enjoy more photos below 🙂
Lingyin Temple Official Website
Address: No.1 Fayun Alley, Lingyin Road, Xihu District, Hangzhou 310013, China
Entrance Fee: RMB 30.
Opening Hours : Daily 8am – 4pm.