Dajue Temple in Beijing
Chinese Name: 大觉寺
English Name: Dajue Temple
Type: Temple, enjoy tree & enjoy ginkgo trees in Autumn
Best Time: All Year Around
Recommended Visiting Hours: 1 hour
Opening Hours: 08:00-17:00
Ticket: 20 RMB (On Wednesdays, the first 200 visitors can visit the temple for free).
Location: Yangtai Piedmont, Haidian District, Beijing
Brief Introduction of Dajue Temple
Also called Temple of Enlightenment, Dajue Temple is located on the southern slope of Yangtai Mountain in the western suburb of Beijing. It is famous for clear springs, ancient trees, beautiful magnolias and peaceful environment. Its construction was started in 1068 in the Liao Dynasty (916-1125) and the original name was Clear Water Temple (Qingshui Yuan in Chinese) for there was a clear spring flowing through the temple. In the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), it changed to the present name. Dajue Temple was open to the public in 1992. Since 1997, the Magnolia Festival has been held every April as well as other exhibitions and cultural activities. In 2006, it was listed as an important cultural relic site under state-level protection.
Why is Dajue Temple so special?
Dajue Temple is famous for its clear spring, ancient trees, magnolia and elegant environment. There are 160 ancient trees in the temple, including 1,000-year-old gingko and 300-year-old magnolia.
Main Attractions in Dajue Temple
In autumn, you can come here to watch the golden gingko trees for thousands of years and gain a clean and pleasant mood. There are also many cats here. Perhaps you will see the cat staring curiously at the koi in the water.
Main Architectures in the Middle Section
Entering the front gate, first you will see the Hall of Heavenly Kings dedicated to Maitreya Bodhisattva. The statues of Maitreya and four Bodhisattvas are housed in the middle of the hall. Gongde Pond (Setting-fish-free Pond) is located in the west of the courtyard. Water flows into the pond through the mouths of stone-engraved animals. These stone sculptures enjoy a history of almost one thousand years. By the east side of the stone bridge over the pond grows an ancient cypress tree, which amazes people by the needle-point leaves and the broad leaves growing in the crown from the vines which parasitize the tree.
Siyi Hall in the Southern Section
Siyi Hall, also South Magnolia Hall was built in the Qing Dynasty. It is famous for its ancient magnolia. This magnolia, with a height of over 33 feet (10 meters), is more than 300 years old, and is the biggest tree of its kind in Beijing. It blossoms in April and the white flowers are as big as an adult’s fist. In the courtyard, a huge cypress tree, parasitized with a plum tree, is also one of the highlights.
North Magnolia Hall in the Northern Section
Monks’ dwellings are located in the northern section, and the North Magnolia Hall is worth visiting. In the courtyard of the hall, there is a grey tank carved by a big marble stone which is 2.2 yards (2 meters) long, 1.4 yards (1.3 meters) wide and 3.3 feet (1 meter) high. Three characters of Bi Yun Qing (meaning clear water) were engraved on it.
How to Get There
- Take Subway Line 1 to Pingguoyuan Station. Get out from Exit D. Then take Commuting Bus 890 and get off at Dajuesi (Dajue Temple) Station. The bus departs regularly at 06:30, 09:30, 13:00, and 16:00.
- Take Subway Line 4 to Beigongmen Station. Then take bus 346 and get off at Zhoujiaxiang Station. Then change to bus 633 and get off at Dajuesi Station.
Jiufeng National Forest Park
The two peaks look like a soaring vulture, so it was named Jiufeng Peak. Jiufeng Peakis well-known in Beijing for its natural landscapes rich in foliage resources, and has therefore become the best place to climb up for a good view in the Xiaoxishan scenic area.
White Cloud Temple
White Cloud Temple is a famous Taoist temple in Beijing. When you come here, you can visit ancient Taoist buildings, worship incense, and experience unique activities such as touching stone monkeys and making money to pray for yourself and your loved ones.