Things to Do in Datong

As a joint city collected nomadic people and agricultural people, Datong overlapped these two cultures since Northern Wei Dynasty and created many masterworks. Among them, the famous one goes to Yungang Grottoes, followed by Hanging Temple located at the foot of Mt. Hengshan.

Later, Datong witnessed the vicissitude of Liao and Jin Dynasties and left historical sites like Huayan Temple, Nine-dragon Screen and Shanhua Temple.

Now Datong as a north city of Shanxi enjoys a peaceful and leisure pace, all those Datong attractions are telling what it had experienced.

Datong Attraction Map

Yungang Grottoes

No.1: Yungang Grottoes

Location: Yungang Town, Southwest of Datong City

Distance to Datong Downtown: 16 km

Listed as a world heritage in 2001, Datong Yungang Grottoes is a relic dated back to the Northern Wei Dynasty (386-534). It is one of the four grottoes art treasures, along with Mogao Grottoes, Longmen Grottoes and Maiji Grottoes. Presently, Yungang Grottoes reveal 45 caves with over 51,000 buddha stone statues from a few centimeters to more than 17 meters of height. All those magnificent statues show you the profound grottoes art history of 5 to 6 century.

Hanging Temple

No.2: Hanging Temple

Location: Southeast side of Hunyuan County, Datong City

Distance to Datong Downtown: 65 km

Situated at the foot of Mt. Hengshan, Hanging Temple is the representative attraction, built into a cliff. Built in 491, it survived for over 1500 years by hanging in the air with 60 meters height. Besides, it’s the only temple in China combined sculptures of Confucianism and Taoism and Buddhism, which is rare. Enter inside, you will find 40 halls and cabinets, containing about 80 sculptures made of copper, iron, terracotta, and stone, all with vivid features.

Mt. Hengshan

No.3: Mt. Hengshan

Location: Southeast of Hunyuan County, Datong City

Distance to Datong Downtown: 74 km

Mt. Hengshan is one of the Five Sacred Mountains of China, together with Mt. Taishan in Shandong Province; Mt. Huashan in Shaanxi Province; Mt. Hengshan in Hunan Province and Mt. Songshan in Henan Province.

With soaring peaks and the undulating curves of the mountain ridges and precipitous cliffs, Mt. Hengshan has the highest peak reaching 2016.1 meters above sea level. Along with temple complex and caves, it provides spectacularly beautiful scenery for tourists.

Yingxian Wooden Pagoda

No.4: Yingxian Wooden Pagoda

Location:Yingxian County

Distance to Datong Downtown: 70 km

Built in the Liao Dynasty in 1056 year, totally by wood, Yingxian Wooden Pagoda is the oldest and highest wooden structure in China. Regard as the first Pagoda in the World, it has 67.31 meters height and 30 meter long diameter at bottom, with a shape of stereoscopic octagon. Looking from the outside, it’s a five-storey architecture, while there is a hidden floor in each storey inside, which making this pagoda stand firmly til now and in the future.

Shanhua Monastery

No.5: Shanhua Monastery (South Temple)

Location:South Gate of Datong Downtown

Initially found in Tang Dynasty and rebuilt in Jin Dynasty, Shanhua Monastery is the well preserved Buddhist building complex during Liao and Jin dynasties. One of the main buildings of Shanhua monastery is the Three Saints Hall which contains three standing statues of Sakyamuni, Bodhisattva Puxian and Bodhisattva Wenshu. With kinds of fine statuesand great wall-paintings, the whole monastery’s layout and style can reflect the history from Tang to Jin Dynasty.

Huayan Temple

No.6: Huayan Temple

Location:Daxi Street of Datong City Center

Tour around Datong down, you can easily find the Huayan Temple, the largest and best preserved monastery of the Liao Dynasty, built in 1038. Containing two separate sections of upper and lower monasteries, Huayan Temple features a huge scale of mural, splendid Buddha statues and large volumes of Buddhist writings.

Nine Dragon Screen

No.7: Nine Dragon Screen

Location:Daxi Street of Datong City Center

Comparing with Nine Dragon Screen in Beijing, Datong Nine Dragon Screen wall is the oldest and largest one in China, with a history of over 600 years. This marvelous screen wall is 45.5 meters long, 8 meters high and 22 meters thick, including nine dragons carved in a very lifelike manner, each playing with a pearl with the sun and moon aside. The front reflection pool is quite enchanting when it changes the dragons of screen wall into vivid ones under the reflection of water.

Recommended Datong Tours

Top 3 Datong tours chosen by most customers to explore Datong in the best way. Check the detailed itinerary, or tailor your own trip now with us.

Yungang Grottoes
2 Days Datong Yungang Grottoes Tour


Datong Yungang Grottoes
4 Days Essence of Datong & Pingyao Tour

Datong / Pingyao

Yungang Grottoes - The treasure of traditional Chinese art
6 Day Datong Pingyao Tour Plus Wutaishan Visit

Datong / Wutaishan / Taiyuan / Pingyao

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