Home>>>Chinese culture>>>>Chinese Architecture

Famous Pagodas in china

As a kind of unique architecture rooted in India, pagodas in China were constructed since the Buddhism was introduced to China. The pagodas, generally known as the carrier of Buddhism culture, found its integration in the traditional Chinese architecture and the design was greatly changed. The nationalization of Indian pagoda demonstrates the good virtues of the Chinese of both highly intelligent and willing to incorporate things of diverse culture.In addition to religious use, since ancient times Chinese pagodas have been praised for the spectacular views which they offer, and many famous poems in Chinese history attest to the joy of scaling pagodas.At present more than 2,000 Buddhist pagodas exist in China, of which the famous ones are: the Wooden Pagoda in Ying County of Shanxi Province, Yingying Pagoda of Pujiu Temple in Shanxi Province,


Wooden Pagoda in Yingxian County of shanxi

Wooden Pagoda:Located in Yingxian County, and about 70 kilometers south of Datong, the Wooden Pagoda is the oldest and highest wooden structure in China. It is regarded as the 'First Pagoda in the World' and a gem in the architectural field. It has now also been placed under national emphases under the Cultural Relics Protection Units.What's more, the large Buddha statues hosted in the Wooden Pagoda show different countenances and postures, and display a very high level of craftsmanship. The statue of Sakyamuni of the 1st floor stands at the height of 11 meters is particularly impressive. If look itup inside the pagoda, you will feel its grandeur.

Big Wild Goose Pagoda in Xi'an

Big Wild Goose Pagoda :Situated in the Da Ci'en Temple, about four kilometres from the urban center, the Big Wild Goose Pagoda (also called the Da Ci'en Temple Pagoda) is one of the famous Buddhist pagodas in China.The storeyed pagoda was an architectural marvel. It was built with layers of bricks but without any cement in between. The Dou Gong (bracket) style in traditional Chinese architecture was also used in the construction of the pagoda. The seams between each layer of bricks and the "prisms" on each side of the pagoda are clearly vislble. The grand body of the pagoda with its solemn ap- pearance, simple style and high structure, is indeed a good example of ancient people's wisdom and talent.


The Three pagodas in Dali

The Three pagodas of Dali are situated between Cangshan Mountain and Erhai Lake. They stand high and grand, and are one of the famous sights of Dali.The major tower of the Three pagodas is Qianxun Tower. It is square and as high as 69.13 meters, and has 16 floors. Like the Small Yan Tower and the Big Yan Tower in Xian, the Qianxun Tower is a typical building of Tang Dynasty. Looking up from the foot of the tower, you can see it stands high into the sky.


 White stupa in Xishuanbanna of Yunnan Province

White stupa is located on the top of a small hill behind Manfeilong village, Damenglong, which is about 70 kilometers far from Jinghong. Stupa was build in 1204, the major one in the middle is 16.29 meters and eight minor ones around are 9.1 meters in height. This stupa group is very famous in Southeast Asia, there is a huge footprint in its niche, it is said was left by Buddha and very sacred to Buddhists


Six Harmonies Pagoda in Hanzhou

Six Harmonies Pagoda:Standing by the Qiantang River in Hangzhou, the Pagoda of Six Harmonies has for hundreds of years been praised by poets and men of letters.Since there was a temple called Temple of Six Harmonies, the pagoda was named accordingly to signify the harmony of heaven, earth, and the four directions of east, west, south and north. The pagoda was constructed on a grand scale at first. It had nine storeys and was some 150 meters high. During the night lanterns were lit on the pagoda so that ships and boats on the Qiantang River could use it as a navigation tower.


Shaolin  Pagoda Forest  in Luyang of Henan Province

Shaolin  Pagoda Forest  First built in 495 A.D., Shaolin Temple is famous for Chinese Kung Fu or Martial Arts and the Zen Buddhism wide-spread in East Asia.Pagoda Forest in Shaolin Temple was a concentration of tomb pagodas for eminent monks, abbots and ranking monks at the temple. A rough count shows more than two hundred fifty tomb pagodas of various sizes, making it the biggest pagoda forest in China.


Tiger Hill Pagoda in Suzhou

Tiger Hill Pagoda — known as  Chinese "Leaning Tower;" in reference to its northwesterly tilt and the Leaning Tower of Pisa — is a symbol of the city of Suzhou, china. Dating from the Northern Song Dynasty in the tenth century, it is an octahedron with seven stories, and is 158 feet (48 m) high.


The Haibao Pagoda in Yinchuan

The Haibao Pagoda, Sea Treasure Pagoda in English, in Yinchuan City, china, is noted for its incredible view of the Yellow River to the east and the Helan Mountain to the west. The Haibao Pagoda is at least 1500 years old. Though its origins are lost to memory, it is known to have been rebuilt multiple times, having collapsed due to earthquakes. It was last rebuilt during the Qing Dynasty in 1788, and currently stands about 177 feet (53.9 m) high, with nine tiers.




Lamaist pagodas, mostly seen in the west of China, are closest to what is assumed to be the Indian prototype, and are shaped as a square tomb with a dome-like top in the middle. Held mostly under the cultural sway of rival kingdoms such as Tibet, Lamaist pagodas have not been sinicized to the same extent as Chinese pagodas, which undertook many changes:

The dome-like steeple ( pinyin sha) was further characterized.

Multiple stories were added to lend visual power and prestige. Prior to the construction of Buddhist pagodas, traditionally only the ruling class in China lived in multi-storied buildings.

An underground chamber or hole was added for burying Buddhist relics.

The center was often built hollow so as to allow visitors access to upper levels, some of which had verandahs.

Pagodas were built in new locations: on raised platforms, over roads, inside temples, and on top of palaces, using a range of new materials, such as wood, bronze, gold and pottery. Building pagodas on top of palaces imparted additional prestige.