china edition
 

 

Nanjing - Mt. Qixia

Jiangsu - Lianyungang - Nanjing - Suzhou - Wuxi - Yangzhou - Zhenjiang

Mount Qixia means the mountain where rosy clouds perch. In autumn, the mountain wears red when maples go red. It lies 22 kilometer northeast of the city. 3 peaks of the mountain are called Mount Tiger, Mount Dragon and Sanmaogong or Peak of Flying Phoenix which is the highest peak. Natural beauty and historic sites win it a great reputation.

Before Qixia Temple, there is a lake called Mirror Lake which was constructed under the reign of Emperor Qianlong in the Qing dynasty. The lake covers 3,000 square meter.

Mt. QixiaThere is a pavilion in the center of the lake, which is connected with the bank with a zigzagging bridge. Behind Crescent Pool is the temple which was built in 489.

In the Tang dynasty, more houses were set up. It was considered one of the 4 most noted temples in the nation. It was rebuilt in 1908 after burnt down under the reign of Emperor Xianfeng in the Qing dynasty. The temple is now the biggest temple in Nanjing.

Moving eastward out of the temple, a dagoba is in sight, which is built with white stone. The 5 stories and octagonal dagoba towers 18 meter high and has relief carvings outside. On the foundation of the dagoba, the carvings tell the story of Sakyamuni while on its body, images of Bodhisattva Samantabhadra, Bodhisattva Manjusri and Heavenly kings are carved.

Behind the temple and east of the dagoba, on the cliff is the Thousand Buddhas Cliff. It was said that in 540 Buddha Aureole appeared here and then aristocrats clustered to hew caves and produce Buddha sculptures. Now there are about 1,000 sculptures left. The biggest one was 11 meter tall. Unfortunately, many of them were damaged due to efflorescence. Recent discovery on the cliff shows the art here has close relation with that of the Dunhuang Mogao Grottoes.