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Five Pagoda Temple & Wanbu Huayanjing Pagoda

Five-Pagoda Temple (Wuta Si), Hohhot, Inner Mongolia

 Five Pagoda Temple

Five-Pagoda Temple (Wuta Si) is located in the southeast section of Hohhot City, capital city of the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region. There are five exquisite pagodas built on top of a Buddhist building, hence the name Five-Pagoda Temple. In fact, the pagodas are what have made this temple famous. It's also known by another name, the Jingangzuo Sheli Baota.

The Five-Pagoda Temple is an important Tibetan Buddhist temple. The pagoda in it is 16.5 meters (54.1 feet) high. There are over 1,000 Buddha statues carved on the body of the pagoda. Only the pagoda in Zhenjue Temple in Beijing resembles the shape of this one. However in terms of the art of architecture, the pagoda in Hohhot is more exquisite.

The pagoda consists of three parts; the foundation, Jingangzuo, and the five square pagodas. The vivid carvings and designs on the pagoda are finely made, and it is representative of the architectural achievements that were made in the Qing Dynasty (1644 - 1911).

The Five-Pagoda Temple has been listed as a national historical site since 1988.

One can get there by bus No.1 or hail a taxi.

Admission Fee: CNY 35
Opening Hours: 9:00 - 17:00
Best Season for a Visit: Summer

 Wanbu Huayanjing Pagoda

Wanbu Huayanjing Pagoda is also called the White Pagoda. It is located in Baita Village, 17 kilometers (10.6 miles) away from the downtown area of Hohhot. Built in the Liao Dynasty (916 - 1125), the pagoda was a stupa for sutra storage in a Buddhist temple.

The White Pagoda is an octagonal structure built of brick and wood. It is approximately 50 meters (164 feet) high with seven stories. The upper part of the base was built in the shape of blossoming lotus petals. The first and second stories were embedded with brick statue carvings of Buddha, Bodhisattva, the Heavenly Kings and Hercules. A finely made spiral staircase inside the pagoda enables visitors to climb to the top, from where they can enjoy the enchanting surrounding scenery.

The outside of the pagoda also has exquisite brick carvings. On every storey, there are words left by tourists of the Jin, Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties. Besides words written in Chinese characters, some of them are written in letters of Qidan, Nuzhen, Mongolian and ancient Persian.

Getting there:
There are regular bus services between the city Hohhot and the site.

Admission Fee: CNY 35
Opening Hours: 08:30 to 17:30

Hohhot History
Hohhot boasts a long history like many other Chinese cities. As early as the Warring States Period (476 BC-221 BC), Zhao Kingdom built Yunzhong City in this area. Today, people still can see the relics of Zhao Great Wall in Hohhot.

After the first emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang, defeated other kingdoms and unified China, the region became Yunzhong County of Qin Dynasty (221 BC-206 BC). Emperor Wu of Western Han Dynasty (206 BC-24 AD) established many cities for military usage in northern China, and one of the relics can be found in the eastern suburb of the city. During the Sui (581-618) and Tang (618-907) dynasties, Hohhot region was under the control of Turkic (Tu Jue in Chinese) until a general of Tang Dynasty defeated them and built three cities in this area. In the early tenth century, Qidan founded Liao Dynasty (916-1125) and named this area Fengzhou. In 1572, the leader of Mongolian tribe founded Hohhot City in this area and Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) gave it a Chinese name Guihua City (means naturalization).

During the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), it was expanded to Suiyan City which is an important military port and commercial center in northern China. During the Ming and Qing dynasties, Hohhot also gained a name, 'City of Temples', since there were many temples in the city. People can visit Five Pagoda Temple, Dazhao Temple, Xilituzhao Palace, Wanbu Huayanjing Pagoda and many other precious historical relics.