Datong Top AttractionsDatong is an eight hour away by train from Beijing, the second largest city in Shanxi Province, situated in the far north, near the border with Inner Mongolia. In a valley at Yungang, some 10 miles west of Datong and easily reached by taxi or public bus, more than 50 recesses have been dug into the hills and filled with Buddhist statues of various sizes and shapes, 51,000 altogether.
From the 56-foot Seated Buddha to tiny figures just a few centimeters tall, every wall and archway is crammed with carvings, including serial-type representations of scenes from Buddhist mythology and the lives of famous monks.
Yungang Grottoes is located at the foot of Wuzhou Mountain, about 16 km west of Datong. It is is one of China's biggest grottoes with world-famous treasure-collection of arts and culture. The caves were carved during the Northern Wei Dynasty under the responsibility of a Buddhist monk named Tan Yao. he was ordered by the emperor at that time. The grottoes stretch one kilometre from east to west and comprises of 53 caves in succession . There are over 1,100 niches with about over 51, 000 statues.
Datong Nine Dragon Screen
Nine Dragon Screen in Datong is one of the three noted Nine Dragons Screens in China. It is the best and the largest in China. The glazed tile screen was built in 1771 during the administration of Emperor Qianlong. It is 3.5 meters high and about 30 meters long. It consists of 270 pieces glazed tiles, having 9 featuring dragons playing with pearls with a background of clouds and seawater.
Hanging Monastery is located at the foot of Mt.Hengshan 65 kilometers from downtown Datong City. The temple hangs on the west cliff of a hill with over 50 meters above the ground, hence Hanging Monastery. Hanging Monastery was first in 491. The present monastery was mainly rebuilt and maintained in the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). The biggest attraction of Hanging Temple is the fact that the temple includes Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism.
The Wooden Pagoda
Located in the Yingxian County 75 km south of Datong. Yingxian Wooden Pagoda was first built in 1056 during the Liao Dynasty . It is the oldest wooden Buddhist pagoda in existence. The pagoda is 67 meters high the pagoda wih a 9 story octagonal building. It was was buit without using any nails.
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