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Zhenguo Temple

Zhenguo Temple is located in Haodong Village, about 12 km. (7.5 miles) northeast of Pingyao County . Pingyao has three most famous cultural sites listed in the World Heritage Directory: Ancient City Wall , Shuanglin Temple  and Zhenguo Temple. These are also key national cultural protection sites of China.

Built in the Five Dynasties period (907-979), Zhenguo Temple has a history of more than one thousand years. Originally named Jingcheng Temple, it was changed to Zhenguo Temple in 1540 during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). The temple, with its two parallel courtyards, has an area of 10,892 square meters (2.7 acres). The front of the temple is the Hall of Tianwang (Heavenly Kings) and Bell and Drum Towers. The central area is the Hall of Wanfo (Ten Thousand Buddhas). In the back is the Hall of Sanfo (Three Buddhas), with the Hall of Kwan-yin (Bodhisattva of Compassion) and the Hall of Kshitigarbha Bodhisattva on either side.

The Hall of Tianwang, built in the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368), is the entrance of the temple. The hall is enshrined with statues of Guan Yu (A brave and faithful general of Shu State during the Three Kingdoms (220-280) period who is worshipped as a deity in Confucianism, Taoism and Buddhism of China), and the Four Heavenly Kings guarding the Buddhist Doctrine. These statues are the newly sculptured works from the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). The Bell and Drum Towers are just beside the hall. In the courtyard outside the hall, there are two old Sophora japonica trees, of which the 'Dragon Sophora japonica Tree' is well known in Pingyao.

The Hall of Wanfo is the central area of the temple. Built in 963 of the Five Dynasties period, the spectacular and impressive hall is one of the three earliest wooden architectures remaining in China. The painted sculptures in the hall are the only preserved ones of the Five Dynasties period in temples across China. There are 14 statues here, among which the statue of Sakyamuni (founder of Buddhism) is the most imposing.

The Hall of Sanfo, named for the three statues of the three forms of Sakyamuni, is the main building in the backyard of the temple. The hall has murals from the Ming Dynasty depicting the life of Sakyamuni. 

For its imposing architecture and representation of Buddhist cultures, Zhenguo Temple in Pingyao is worth visiting.

  Admission  Fee   
          CNY 20
  Opening  Hours
    8:00 a.m. - 17:30 p.m.
   Bus  Route
   9 (at Pingyao Railway Station) 

 When to go to Pingyao

Pingyao is of a typical temperate continental climate and has distinctive four seasons. The autumn, when it is cool and sunny, is the best time to visit. There is also an international photography festival held in the county in the late September, when many valuable pieces of photography from world renowned photographers are exhibited. Every Chinese Lantern Festival (Lunar Jan. 15), Pingyao holds folk art performances involving many local operas and various other colorful activities. This display provides a good opportunity to learn about the splendid culture of the county.

Other Attractions in/near Pingyao
Ancient Ming and Qing Street & Rishengchang Exchange Shop
City Wall of Pingyao & Temple of the City God
Wang's Compound
Shuanglin Temple