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Jade Buddha Temple (玉佛寺) is a famous Buddhist Temple peacefully situated in the bustling Shanghai downtown area. Regarded as one of the top 10 attractions of Shanghai, Jade Buddha Temple is worth visiting for spiritual experience.
Till now, Jade Buddha Temple has a history of over 130 years. In 1882 of Qing Dynasty (清朝), the Buddhist monk Huigen (慧根) from Mount Wutai (五台山), went on a pilgrimage visit to Mount Emei (峨眉山) and holy Tibet, got to India and finally reached Burma to take five pieces of Jade Buddha and prepare to send back to Mount Wutai, one of the four sacred Buddhist mountains in China. On the way he passed Shanghai, he left two – one is the sitting Buddha and the other is the reclining Buddha, and built a temple called Jade Buddha Temple. Later, it was destroyed in the war and rebuilt in 1918.
Jade Buddha Temple is a Song-dynasty-style architecture with precise complex and harmonious structure. In the central axis, there are Hall of Heavenly Kings, Daxiong Grand Hall and Jade Buddha Chamber. In the left and right side, there are Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva Hall, Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva Hall, Manjusri Bodhisattva Hall, Reclining Buddha Statue, Copper Buddha Hall, and so on.
The Hall of Heavenly Kings (天王殿) is with two floors and three doors opened in the south. In front of the hall, it sits Maitreya Buddha with smiling faces who will appear on Earth in the future. Behind the statue of Maitreya, it is the statue of Skanda with vajra pestle in his hands who protects the temple. On the both sides of the hall are the Four Heavenly Kings who represent favorable circumstance in the east, the west, the north and the south.
Daxiong Grand Hall (大雄宝殿) is the main part of Jade Buddha Temple. There are three holy Buddha sitting in the hall – Sakyamuni Buddha in the middle, Amitabha in the left and Medicine Guru Buddha in the right. All of them are about four meters tall with very peaceful expression. Behind the Three Golden Buddha, it is the statue of Avalokitesvara (Guanyin, 观音), a bodhisattva who embodies the compassion of all Buddha.
Besides, there are Gods of the Twenty Heavens, covered in gold, lining the eastern and western sides of the Grand Hall. And, 18 unique golden arhats stand in two group of nine outside of the hall.
In the Jade Buddha Chamber (玉佛楼), it worships the treasure of the temple – Jade Buddha. It is of 1.95 meters tall with a well-rounded face, crescent-shaped eyebrows, half-opened eyes looking down, a straight nose, and a closed mouth with lips up. It puts its left hand on the left leg and right hand dropping down naturally. Jade Buddha is exquisitely carved with smooth and elegant lines.
You have known the sitting Jade Buddha is in the second floor of the Jade Buddha Chamber, but do you know where to see the reclining Jade Buddha? Located next to the Jade Buddha Chamber is the Reclining Buddha Hall where you can take a look at the beautifully carved reclining Jade Buddha of 0.96 meters tall. Travelers only can appreciate it through glass and the reclining Buddha is peacefully smiling which presents the expression when Sakyamuni Buddha leaves the world.
When you see sitting Jade Buddha in the Jade Buddha Chamber, you can also take a look at the precious Buddhist sutra and relics. The Tripitaka (Qianlong Version) is being kept here. You should not miss the Bronze Buddha in North Wei Dynasty (北魏, 491 AD), Medicine Guru Buddha in East Wei (东魏, 543 AD), and jujube wood Avalokitesvara Statue in Ming Dynasty (明朝) and two-meter wooden carved Lingjia Mountain in Qing Dynasty.
There is a vegetarian Restaurant which is a separate part of the complex that travelers can enter without coming through the main entrance. This restaurant serves different types of vegetarian food, like double mushroom noodles, Arhat noodles, double mushroom and lion head noodles, lion head, vegetarian duck, vegetarian chicken, and vegetarian ham, etc. Prices vary with different dishes and the average price for a meal is around 30 Yuan.
Jade Buddha Temple is located in Anyuan Road (安远路) in Putuo District (普陀区) of Shanghai, close to the main tourist attractions of Shanghai, like the Bund, Nanjing Road, Oriental Pearl TV Tower, and so forth.
Travelers can go there by taxi, bus and subway (Line 13 to Jiangning Road Station, 江宁路站). For more transportation info, please feel free to contact our professional travel consultants
If you want to get rid of hustle of public transportation and troublesome navigation, you can book a private tour package which covers sightseeing, dining and transfer from us. Our local tour guide and driver will escort you to Jade Buddha Temple with speed and convenience, and take care of all the details. You just need to focus on sightseeing.
The entrance ticket of Jade Buddha Temple is 20 Yuan per person. As for travelers who want to get up the second floor of Jade Buddha Chamber to see the sitting Jade Buddha, an extra 10 Yuan is required.
To respect and protect the Buddha, photos are not allowed to be taken in the Jade Buddha Chamber. Other rooms are allowed.
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[Important] Travel News for Expats: China travel is reopening now! Travel with China Discovery and learn about where to visit & requirements for each destination! Read Details >