China's 142 Key Temples


The 142 Key Temples in the Han Area of China
(note that nothing from the far west is included)

After all the wonderful experiences I had following the Pilgrim's Paths in Japan, when I moved to China--the wellspring of Japanese Buddhism--I was hoping for more of the same. Alas, it was not to be.

There are four Buddhist mountains in China, but there is no traditional path linking them up. And though the mountains may be challenging, the number "four" is not.

Then, one day, I was reading Sun Shuyun's book about the Silk Road, entitled Ten Thousand Miles Without a Cloud, and I found what I sought: right there, on page 40, she wrote:
Buddhism was making a comeback in China.  In the early 1980s the government had issued a decree allowing a limited revival of religion... The decree allowed for the 142 most important Buddhist monasteries damaged or destroyed in the Cultural Revolution to be restored or rebuilt.
I immediately began searching for this list. When I came up empty-handed, I wrote to knowledgeable friends, and by great good fortune one of them, Robert (who reads and writes fluent Chinese) found it--on Chinese Wikipedia! Apparently it's no secret in the Chinese-speaking world, but to my knowledge, my translation of the list was the first to bring the whole thing into English.

Please notice that these are 142 temples in the traditionally Han area of China; this excludes such "minority" areas as Tibet, Inner Mongolia, and the western provinces (Qinghai and Xinjiang).

I got Robert's letter on July 31, 2009, and less than three weeks later I took off for my first "official" visits (I had been to several temples on the list previously--and had lived in one of them for the better part of a year!)

Since then, I have visited 132 of the 142 temples on the list. Along the way, I also saw quite a few other temples, as well.

Here, then, is my list of the 142 temples, visited and not. (Locations for those that have not been visited are very approximate; others are just sort of approximate.) They are listed in the order given in the original list my friend found; I have added "my number" to indicate the order I visited them in. Be sure to see the note about Map vs Satellite view under "China" on the "My Maps" page.



The List:
  1. Guangji Si (广济寺) Beijing (map); visited Sunday, July 10, 2011; my #52
  2. Fayuan Si (法源寺) Beijing (map); visited Monday, July 11, 2011; my #53
  3. Foya Shili Ta at Lingguang Si (佛牙舍利塔灵光寺) Badachu Park, Beijing (map); visited Saturday, July 9, 2011; my #48
  4. Guanghua Si (广化寺) Beijing (map); visited Sunday, July 10, 2011; my #51
  5. Tongjiao Si (通教寺) Beijing (map); visited Sunday, July 10, 2011; my #49
  6. Yonghe Gong (雍和宫) Beijing (map); visited Tuesday, July 12, 2011; my #54
  7. Xihuang Si (西黄寺) Beijing (map); visited Sunday, July 10, 2011; my #50
  8. Dabei Yuan (大悲院) Tianjin (map); visited Wednesday, July 13, 2011; my #55
  9. Linji Tayuan (临济塔院) Zhengding, Shijiazhuang, Hebei (map); visited Tuesday, August 30, 2011; my #63
  10. Puning Si (普宁寺) Chengde, Hebei (map); visited Sunday, August 28, 2011; my #62
  11. Chongshan Si (崇善寺) Taiyuan, Shanxi (map); visited Friday, August 31, 2012; my #132
  12. Shang Huayan Si (上华严寺) Datong, Shanxi (map); visited Wednesday, August 22, 2012; my #119
  13. Xuanzhong Si (玄中寺) Jiaochengxian, Shanxi (map); visited Tuesday, August 30, 2012; my #131
  14. Xiantong Si (显通寺) Wutaishan, Shanxi (map); visited Saturday, August 27, 2012; my #128
  15. Tayuan Si (塔院寺) Wutaishan, Shanxi (map); visited Saturday, August 27, 2012; my #129
  16. Pusa Ding (菩萨顶) Wutaishan, Shanxi (map); visited Saturday, August 27, 2012; my #127
  17. Shuxiang Si (殊像寺) Wutaishan, Shanxi (map); visited Sunday, August 28, 2012; my #130
  18. Luohou Si (罗喉寺) Wutaishan, Shanxi (map); visited Saturday, August 27, 2012; my #125
  19. Jinge Si (金阁寺) Wutaishan, Shanxi (map); visited Thursday, August 25, 2012; my #120
  20. Guangzong Si (广宗寺) Wutaishan, Shanxi (map); visited Saturday, August 27, 2012; my #126
  21. Bishan Si (碧山寺) Wutaishan, Shanxi (map); visited Thursday, August 25, 2012; my #122
  22. Shifang Tang (十方堂) Wutaishan, Shanxi (map); visited Saturday, August 27, 2012; my #124
  23. Dailuo Ding (黛螺顶) Wutaishan, Shanxi (map); visited Friday, August 26, 2012; my #123
  24. Guanyin Dong (观音洞) Wutaishan, Shanxi (map); visited Thursday, August 25, 2012; my #121
  25. Boruo Si (般若寺) Shenyang, Liaoning (map); visited Saturday, August 27, 2011; my #60
  26. Ci'en Si (慈恩寺) Shenyang, Liaoning (map); visited Saturday, August 27, 2011; my #61
  27. Boruo Si (般若寺) Changchun, Jilin (map); visited Thursday, August 25, 2011; my #58
  28. Dizang Si (地藏寺) Changchun, Jilin (map); visited Thursday, August 25, 2011; my #57
  29. Guanyin Gu Cha (观音古刹) Jilin, Jilin (map); visited Friday, August 26, 2011; my #59
  30. Jile Si (极乐寺) Harbin, Heilongjiang (map); visited Thursday, August 25, 2011; my #56
  31. Yufo Si (玉佛寺) Shanghai (map); visited Wednesday, August 26, 2009; my #13
  32. Jing'an Si (静安寺) Shanghai (map); visited Wednesday, August 26, 2009; my #12
  33. Longhua Si (龙华寺) Shanghai (map); visited Tuesday, August 25, 2009; my #10
  34. Chenxiang Ge (沉香阁) Shanghai (map); visited Tuesday, August 25, 2009; my #9
  35. Yuanming Jiangtang (圆明讲堂) Shanghai (map); visited Tuesday, August 25, 2009; my #11
  36. Linggu Si (灵谷寺) Nanjing, Jiangsu (map); visited Friday, July 23, 2010; my #27
  37. Qixia Si (栖霞寺) Nanjing, Jiangsu (map); visited Thursday, July 22, 2010; my #26
  38. Xiyuan Jiechuang Si (西园戒幢寺) Suzhou, Jiangsu (map); visited Wednesday, July 28, 2010; my #35
  39. Hanshan Si (寒山寺) Suzhou, Jiangsu (map); visited Thursday, July 29, 2010; my #38
  40. Lingyanshan Si (灵岩山寺) Suzhou, Jiangsu (map); visited Thursday, July 29, 2010; my #37
  41. Jinshan Jiangtian Si (金山江天寺) Zhenjiang, Jiangsu (map); visited Friday, July 23, 2010; my #28
  42. Jiaoshan Dinghui Si (焦山定慧寺) Zhenjiang, Jiangsu (map); visited Saturday, July 24, 2010; my #30
  43. Tianning Si (天宁寺) Changzhou, Jiangsu (map); visited Monday, July 26, 2010; my #33
  44. Yushan Xingfu Si (虞山兴福寺) Changshu, Jiangsu (map); visited Wednesday, July 28, 2010; my #36
  45. Guangjiao Si (广教寺) Nantong, Jiangsu (map); visited Tuesday, July 27, 2010; my #34
  46. Daming Si (大明寺) Yangzhou, Jiangsu (map); visited Monday, July 26, 2010; my #32
  47. Gaomin Si (高旻寺) Yangzhou, Jiangsu (map); visited Sunday, July 25, 2010; my #31
  48. Longchang Si (隆昌寺) Jurong, Jiangsu (map); visited Saturday, July 24, 2010; my #29
  49. Lingyin Si (灵隐寺) Hangzhou, Zhejiang (map); visited Tuesday, August 18, 2009; my #1
  50. Jingci Si (净慈寺) Hangzhou, Zhejiang (map); visited Tuesday, August 18, 2009; my #2
  51. Qita Si (七塔寺) Ningbo, Zhejiang (map); visited Sunday, August 23, 2009; my #8
  52. Tiantong Si (天童寺) Ningbo, Zhejiang (map); visited Saturday, August 22, 2009; my #6
  53. Ayuwang Si (阿育王寺) Ningbo, Zhejiang (map); visited Saturday, August 22, 2009; my #7
  54. Dafo Si (大佛寺) Xinchang, Shaoxing, Zhejiang (map); visited Monday, September 12, 2011; my #65
  55. Puji Si (普济寺) Putuo Shan, Zhejiang (map); visited Friday, August 21, 2009; my #4
  56. Fayu Si (法雨寺) Putuo Shan, Zhejiang (map); visited Friday, August 21, 2009; my #5
  57. Huiji Si (慧济寺) Putuo Shan, Zhejiang (map); visited Thursday, August 20, 2009; my #3
  58. Guoqing Si (国清寺) Tiantai, Taizhou, Zhejiang (map); visited Tuesday, September 13, 2011; my #66
  59. Gaoming Si (高明寺) Tiantai, Taizhou, Zhejiang (map); visited Thursday, September 15, 2011; my #68
  60. Fangguang Si (方广寺) Tiantai, Taizhou, Zhejiang (map); visited Wednesday, September 14, 2011; my #67
  61. Jiangxin Si (江心寺) Wenzhou, Zhejiang (map); visited Friday, September 16, 2011; my #69
  62. Mingjiao Si (明教寺) Hefei, Anhui (map); visited Wednesday, July 21, 2010; my #24
  63. Yingjiang Si (迎江寺) Anqing, Anhui (map); visited Monday, June 25, 2012; my #100
  64. Qianyuan Chan Si (乾元禅寺) Qianshan Xian, Anqing, Anhui (map); visited Tuesday, June 26, 2012; my #101
  65. Langya Si (琅琊寺) Chuzhou, Anhui (map); visited Thursday, July 22, 2010; my #25
  66. Guangji Si (广济寺) Wuhu, Anhui (map); visited Wednesday, July 21, 2010; my #23
  67. Huacheng Si (化城寺) Jiuhua Shan, Anhui (map); visited Saturday, June 23, 2012; my #97
  68. Roushen Dian (肉身殿) Jiuhua Shan, Anhui (map); visited Friday, June 22, 2012; my #93
  69. Baisui Gong (百岁宫) Jiuhua Shan, Anhui (map); visited Saturday, June 23, 2012; my #96
  70. Ganlu Si (甘露寺) Jiuhua Shan, Anhui (map); visited Sunday, June 24, 2012; my #99
  71. Zhiyuan Si (祗园寺) Jiuhua Shan, Anhui (map); visited Sunday, June 24, 2012; my #98
  72. Tiantai Si (天台寺) Jiuhua Shan, Anhui (map); visited Thursday, June 21, 2012; my #91
  73. Zhantan Lin (旃檀林) Jiuhua Shan, Anhui (map); visited Saturday, June 23, 2012; my #95
  74. Huiju Si (慧居寺) Jiuhua Shan, Anhui (map); visited Thursday, June 21, 2012; my #92
  75. Shang Chantang (上禅堂) Jiuhua Shan, Anhui (map); visited Friday, June 22, 2012; my #94
  76. Yongquan Si (涌泉寺) Fuzhou, Fujian (map); visited Wednesday, October 26, 2011; my #75
  77. Xichan Si (西禅寺) Fuzhou, Fujian (map); visited Monday, October 24, 2011; my #73
  78. Linyang Si (林阳寺) Fuzhou, Fujian (map); visited Monday, October 24, 2011; my #72
  79. Dizang Si (地藏寺) Fuzhou, Fujian (map); visited Saturday, October 22, 2011; my #70
  80. Xuefeng Chongsheng Si (雪峰崇圣寺) Minhou Xian, Fujian (map); visited Sunday, October 23, 2011; my #71
  81. Nanputuo Si (南普陀寺) Xiamen, Fujian (map); visited Tuesday, January 17, 2012; my #82
  82. Guanghua Si (广化寺) Putian, Fujian (map); visited Friday, October 28, 2011; my #78
  83. Nangshan Cishou Si (囊山慈寿寺) Putian, Fujian (map); visited Friday, October 28, 2011; my #77
  84. Guangxiao Si (光孝寺) Putian, Fujian (map); visited Friday, October 28, 2011; my #79
  85. Wanfu Si (万福寺) Fuqing, Fujian (map); visited Thursday, October 27, 2011; my #76
  86. Kaiyuan Si (开元寺) Quanzhou, Fujian (map); visited Wednesday, January 18, 2012; my #83
  87. Longshan Si (龙山寺) Jinjiang, Fujian (map); visited Wednesday, January 18, 2012; my #84
  88. Nanshan Si (南山寺) Zhangzhou, Fujian (map); visited Thursday, January 19, 2012; my #85
  89. Zhiti Huayan Si (支提华严寺) Ningde, Fujian (map); visited Tuesday, October 25, 2011; my #74
  90. Nengren Si (能仁寺) Jiujiang, Jiangxi (map); visited Wednesday, August 8, 2012; my #109
  91. Donglin Si (东林寺) Jiujiang, Jiangxi (map); visited Wednesday, August 8, 2012; my #110
  92. Zhenru Si (真如寺) Yongxiu, Jiujiang, Jiangxi (map); visited Friday, August 10, 2012; my #111
  93. Jingju Si (净居寺) Ji'an, Jiangxi (map); visited Saturday, August 11, 2012; my #112
  94. Xingguo Chan Si (兴国禅寺) Jinan, Shandong (map); visited Monday, April 5, 2010; my #18
  95. Zhanshan Si (湛山寺) Qingdao, Shandong (map); visited Wednesday, August 31, 2011; my #64
  96. Baima Si (白马寺) Luoyang, Henan (map); visited Tuesday, November 1, 2011; my #80
  97. Shaolin Si (少林寺) Dengfeng, Henan (map); visited Thursday, November 3, 2011; my #81
  98. Guiyuan Si (归元寺) Wuhan, Hubei (map); visited Saturday, August 4, 2012; my #105
  99. Baotong Si (宝通寺) Wuhan, Hubei (map); visited Saturday, August 4, 2012; my #106
  100. Wuzu Si (五祖寺) Huangmei, Huanggang, Hubei (map); visited Tuesday, August 7, 2012; my #108
  101. Yuquan Si (玉泉寺) Dangyang, Hubei (map); visited Sunday, August 5, 2012; my #107
  102. Lushan Si (麓山寺) Changsha, Hunan (map); visited Monday, August 13, 2012; my #114
  103. Kaifu Si (开福寺) Changsha, Hunan (map); visited Sunday, August 12, 2012; my #113
  104. Zhusheng Si (祝圣寺) Nanyue, Hunan (map); visited Wednesday, August 15, 2012; my #118
  105. Fuyan Si (福严寺) Nanyue, Hunan (map); visited Tuesday, August 14, 2012; my #117
  106. Nantai Si (南台寺) Nanyue, Hunan (map); visited Tuesday, August 14, 2012; my #116
  107. Shangfeng Si (上封寺) Nanyue, Hunan (map); visited Tuesday, August 14, 2012; my #115
  108. Liurong Si (六榕寺) Guangzhou, Guangdong (map); visited Friday, November 19, 2010; my #44
  109. Nanhua Si (南华寺) Shaoguan, Guangdong (map); visited Tuesday, July 24, 2012; my #103
  110. Yunmen Si (云门寺) Ruyuan, Shaoguan, Guangdong (map); visited Monday, July 23, 2012; my #102
  111. Qingyun Si (庆云寺) Zhaoqing, Guangdong (map); visited Saturday, July 28, 2012; my #104
  112. Lingshan Si (灵山寺) Shantou, Chaoyangqu, Guangdong (map); visited Saturday, January 21, 2012; my #86
  113. Kaiyuan Si (开元寺) Chaozhou, Guangdong (map); visited Sunday, January 22, 2012; my #87
  114. Xishi An (洗石庵) (map); not yet visited
  115. Luohan Si (罗汉寺) Chongqing (map); visited Thursday, June 14, 2012; my #88
  116. Ciyun Si (慈云寺) Chongqing (map); visited Thursday, June 14, 2012; my #89
  117. Shuanggui Tang (双桂堂) Liangping Xian, Chongqing (map); visited Friday, June 15, 2012; my #90
  118. Zhaojue Si (昭觉寺) Chengdu, Sichuan (map); visited Saturday, May 15, 2010; my #20
  119. Wenshu Yuan (文殊院) Chengdu, Sichuan (map); visited Saturday, May 15, 2010; my #19
  120. Baoguang Si (宝光寺) Chengdu, Sichuan (map); visited Monday, May 17, 2010; my #22
  121. Wuyou Si (乌尤寺) Leshan, Sichuan (map); visited Sunday, May 16, 2010; my #21
  122. Baoguo Si (报国寺 ) Emei Shan, Sichuan (map); not yet visited
  123. Wannian Si (万年寺 ) Emei Shan, Sichuan (map); not yet visited
  124. Hongchun Ping (洪椿坪) Emei Shan, Sichuan (map); not yet visited
  125. Xixiang Chi (洗象池) Emei Shan, Sichuan (map); not yet visited
  126. Jin Ding (金顶) Emei Shan, Sichuan (map); not yet visited
  127. Hongfu Si (宏福寺) Guiyang, Guizhou (map); not yet visited
  128. Qianming Si (黔明寺) Guiyang, Guizhou (map); not yet visited
  129. Yuantong Si (圆通寺) Kunming, Yunnan (map); visited Monday, June 6, 2011; my #47
  130. Qiongzhu Si (筇竹寺) Kunming, Yunnan (map); visited Saturday, June 4, 2011; my #45
  131. Huating Si (华亭寺) Kunming, Yunnan (map); visited Sunday, June 5, 2011; my #46
  132. Zhusheng Si (祝圣寺) Binchuanxian, Jizushan, Yunnan (map); not yet visited
  133. Tongwa Dian (铜瓦殿) Binchuanxian, Jizushan, Yunnan (map); not yet visited
  134. Daci'en Si (大慈恩寺) Xi'an, Shaanxi (map); visited Tuesday, September 1, 2009; my #17
  135. Daxingshan Si (大兴善寺) Xi'an, Shaanxi (map); visited Tuesday, September 1, 2009; my #16
  136. Wolong Si (卧龙寺) Xi'an, Shaanxi (map); visited Monday, August 31, 2009; my #15
  137. Guangren Si (广仁寺) Xi'an, Shaanxi (map); visited Monday, August 31, 2009; my #14
  138. Xingjiao Si (兴教寺) Xi'an, Shaanxi (map); visited Thursday, October 14, 2010; my #39
  139. Xiangji Si (香积寺) Xi'an, Shaanxi (map); visited Saturday, October 16, 2010; my #42
  140. Jingye Si (净业寺) Xi'an, Shaanxi (map); visited Friday, October 15, 2010; my #40
  141. Caotang Si (草堂寺) Xi'an, Shaanxi (map); visited Friday, October 15, 2010; my #41
  142. Haibaota Si (海宝塔寺) Yinchuan, Ningxia (map); visited Tuesday, October 19, 2010; my #43

Last updated May 3, 2019

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