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China Unknown Attractions Songzanlin Monastery

Songzanlin Monastery

Gedan Songzanlin Monastery was initially established in 1679 and completed in 1681, and it is also the largest Tibet-style Buddhist temple in Yunnan province. Songzanlin also called Guihua Temple, just five kilometers away from Shangri-la county or Zhongdian. It is one of top-13 forests in Tibet area. In 1674, Dalai Lama 5 requested Emperor Kangxi of Qing Dynasty to approve to establish a temple. Emperor agreed. Dalai Lama himself selected the place for temple establishment and named it Gedan Songzanlin. Besides, Emperor Yongheng of Qing Dynasty also named it Guihua Temple. In Tibet Area, lots of highly-respected monks or lamas appeared from this temple. Currently it has over 700 lamas. The whole monastery is built following the basic layout of Potala Palace. Traditionally, it boasts Small-Size Potala Palace. The inside wall paintings are also marvelous. So we can imagine how sacred it is in the mind of local people. Seeing from the north side of Zhongdian County or Shangri-la, travelers can see a large-scale architectural complex in the grasslands and mountains. The architecture is built magnificently and the roof of the building is decorated with gold-glazed bronze tiles. Under the sunshine, it is quite dazzling. This is Songanlin Monastery.

Today, the inside of Songzanlin Monastery is featured of the clear spring which is always running all year long. The top buildings are Zhacang he Jikang, and both of them are located at the middle of the temple. The main building faces north and backs on south. It belongs to a five-floor Tibetan style architecture. The roof of the main building is covered with gold-glazed bronze-made tile. Meanwhile, it is also built partially in line with the architectural style of Han Nationality. There are 108 columns in the main hall. The number of column represents a lucky number in Buddhism. The main hall can hold 1600 lamas or believers for their sutra-reading at the same time.

The transportation of Songzanlin Monastery: visitors can directly arrive at the destination from Shangri-la at the expenditure of 2 Yuan. And visitors also can take bus 3, and the bus 3 directly arrives at the square of Songzanlin Monastery.

Writer: David from Seeraa International
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