A Travellerspoint blog

The Muslim Quarter & Ancient Taoist Temples

Hey Hey and a Big G'Day toya Today was sadly to be my last day in Xian and my last day with my beautiful Luo Wei. I was to continue on to Shanxi Province and she was to head home to Kaifeng City to spend time with her mother. Even though it was to be my last day in Xian I thought it best to head down stairs and see if I could strike up a deal for half a day's ccommodation. I rose early and bargained until I had paid half of my usual nights cost. After our sad goodbyes I headed down to the Muslim Quarter in search of the Great Mosque that eluded both Judy and I the last time we were here. Once again I followed the signs that were supposed to lead me to the ticket off and found myself trapped within the rabbit warren of a market place where men and women seductively ask you to 'come in'. You want tee-shirt! Come try it on, I give you good price! I left the market place and one again zig zagged my way around the Muslim Quarter for an hour or more until I found beautiful old Taoist Temple that was receiving its first make over in god knows how many years. Most of the wood work was so old and faded that you could barely admire the ancient paintings that had once been lovingly left there for countless generations to admire. When it is complete, just like all Taoist Temples it will be a special place to visit! I once again went in search of the elusive Great Mosque. If a million tourists can find it each year then was sure I could if I at least I put but a small amount of effort in. I once again entered the maze like market place and happily within minutes I was standing right before the ticket window and entrance. Records carved in the stone tablets near the entrance of the mosque show that it is over 1250 years old (built in 742AD during the Tang Dynasty). It was restored during the Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties. It covers over 1300 square meters, is built from east to west and has four very beautiful and different courtyards. After my visit headed home and slept till around 8:30pm. I said my goodbyes to the hotel staff and caught the double decker tourist bust (No: 603) to the train station. I sat for delicious King Noodles and then headed across to the train station where I waited in line with the millions out front and slowly made my way into and through the X-Ray machine. When I went to collect my bags I found my pack in another guy's hand. He looked so sorry and innocent and I have no doubts in my mind that he had grabbed the wrong pack by mistake. He was with his family and his pack was the same as my day pack and sadly it probably contained most of what he owned. For me my day pack only contained my new nifty traveling computer and my lonely planet China guide. He will never know what was in the pack he had in his hands and it would have taken him many years to even contemplate purchasing such things! When I finally found out what gate to wait at I met a nice guy who had started his summer holidays several hours prior. He was about my age and his work place had sent him back to school. He was one of the lucky ones to get to attend Xian University. He was so excited as he was heading home to his wife and baby whom he had not seen for several months. Upon the platform we said our happy good byes and I then headed to my carriage! When I found my carriage and seat I was in for a it of a shock! Bloody sardines mate! Sardines! Beers N Noodles toya.....shane PS: as usual the days photos can be found at the bottom of the page! _________________________________________________________ The soundtrack to this entry was by White Zombie The album was 'Super Sexy Swinging Sounds' __________________________________________________________ <u>Great Mosque (Qingzhen Dasi): [/i] </u></b> [/i] Behind Drum Tower, built in a perfect mixture of Islamic and Chinese architecture styles with seating for 1,000 worshipers and the Muslim Street around it. The Great Mosque in Xian is one of the oldest, largest and best-preserved Islamic mosques in China and its location is northwest of the Drum Tower (Gu Lou) on Huajue Lane. [/i][/i] [/i] According to historical records engraved on a stone tablet inside, this mosque was built in 742 during the Tang Dynasty (618-907). This was a result of Islam being introduced into Northwest China by Arab merchants and travelers from Persia and Afghanistan during the mid-7th century when some of them settled down in China and married women of Han Nationality. Their descendants became Muslim of today. The Muslim played an important role in the unifications of China during the Yuan and Ming Dynasties. Hence, other mosques were also built to honor them. [/i] [/i] In Xian, it is really well worth a trip to see the Great Mosque, not only for its centuries-old history but also for its particular design of mixed architecture - traditional Muslim and Chinese styles. [/i] [/i] Occupying an area of over 12,000 square meters, the Great Mosque is divided into four courtyards, 250 meters long and 47 meters wide with a well-arranged layout. Landscaped with gardens, the further one strolls into its interior, the more serene one feels. [/i] [/i] The first courtyard contains an elaborate wooden arch nine meters high covered with glazed tiles that dates back to the 17th century. [/i] [/i] In the center of the second courtyard, a stone arch stands with two steles on both sides. On one stele is the script of a famous calligrapher named Mi Fu of the Song Dynasty; the other is from Dong Qichang, a calligrapher of the Ming Dynasty. [/i] [/i] Their calligraphy because of such elegant yet powerful characters is considered to be a great treasure in the art of handwriting. [/i] [/i] At the entrance to the third courtyard is a hall that contains many steles from ancient times. As visitors enter this courtyard, they will see the Xingxin Tower, a place where Muslims come to attend prayer services. A 'Phoenix' placed in the fourth courtyard, the principal pavilion of this great mosque complex, contains the Prayer Hall, the surrounding walls of which are covered with colored designs. This Hall can easily hold 1,000 people at a time and according to traditional custom, prayer services are held five times everyday respectively at dawn, noon, afternoon, dusk and night. [/i] [/i] Mosques in China, this Great Mosque is the only one open to visitors from 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Non-Muslims, however, are not admitted to the main prayer hall or during times of prayer. [/i]

Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


1-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

1-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


2-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

2-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


3-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

3-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


4-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

4-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


5-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

5-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


6-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

6-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


7-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

7-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


8-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

8-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


9-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

9-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


10-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

10-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


11-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

11-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


12-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

12-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


13-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

13-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


14-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

14-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


15-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

15-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


16-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

16-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


17-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

17-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


18-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

18-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


19-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

19-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


20-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

20-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


21-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

21-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


22-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

22-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


23-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

23-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


24-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

24-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


25-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

25-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


26-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

26-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


27-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

27-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


28-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

28-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter


29-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

29-Taoist Temple &#38;amp; Muslim Quarter

Posted by eddakath 17:00 Archived in China

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