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Wudangzhao Lamasery — Largest and Best-Preserved Tibetan Lamasery in Inner Mongolia

Wudangzhao is a National Key Cultural Relics Protection Unit, a National 4A Tourist Attraction, and one of China's Four Famous Tibetan Buddhist Monasteries.

Highlights of Wudangzhao Lamasery

  • Stroll in Suguqin Hall, the largest hall in the lamasery.
  • Marvel at over 150,000 Buddhist statues of various sizes.
  • Appreciate the Buddhist artwork.
  • Listen to Buddhist stories.
  • Take part in the temple fair celebrations (from July 25 to August 1).
  • Study Tibetan and Mongolian ethnic religions and culture.

Special Meanings of Wudangzhao

  • Tibetan: “Bada Gele” is is Wudangzhao Lamasery's Tibetan name, meaning 'white lotus'.
  • Mongolian (Chinese): “Wudang” means “willow”, and “Zhao” means “lamasery”. Willows were luxuriant in the valley at that time, thus the name.

Traditional Tibetan Architecture and Unique Layout

Architectural style: The lamasery is a group of traditional Tibetan buildings with white walls and flat roofs, dotted about the 1-mile-long mountain slope of .

Construction layout: Unlike typical Tibetan temples, built like courtyards with enclosing walls, the buildings of Wudangzhao have an open layout, with each building being independent and distributed irregularly on the mountain slope and the valley.

The main buildings: It is composed of six halls, three Buddhist shrines, and one funeral hall for storing ashes of former Buddhas. Besides, there are many residences for monks.

The Main Hall

The three-floor Suguqin Hall is the main hall and the largest in the lamasery. This is the main assembly hall where all the monks gather to chant sutras or have meetings. 

According to statistics, there are over 150,000 Buddhist statues at Wudangzhao, with sizes rang from several meters tall to inches small, made of materials like gold, copper, wood and even mud. 

There is also a large collection of Buddhist arts in the lamasery vividly depicting folklores, figures, animals and plants as well as Buddhist stories, which provide precious resources for studies of Tibetan, Mongolian ethnic religions and culture.

The Funeral Hall

Since 1763, there have been seven living Buddhas at Wudangzhao, and the last one died in 1955. Their ashes were stored in the funeral hall. 

Buddhist Activities at Wudangzhao

In its prime time, there were over 1,200 monks at Wudangzhao. Besides normal Buddhist activities and pilgrimage, Wudangzhao is a famous lecturing lamasery in Inner Mongolia. It has a school for monks to learn sutras and study Buddhism.

The Temple Fair

Among the many Buddhist activities there, the most popular one has to be the temple fair. Every year from July 25 till August 1 on lunar calendar, all the monks at Wudangzhao will chant sutra at Suguqin Hall. 

At dusk, the monks will walk around the lamasery holding prayer wheels, blowing religious pipes and beating sheepskin drums. Pilgrims and tourists all gather there to watch this magnificent scene and take part in the celebrating activities.

Travel Essentials

Wudangzhao Lamasery, Baotou, Inner Mongolia
  • Chinese: 五当召 Wǔdāngzhào /woo-dung-jaow/
  • Built in: 1749
  • Location: 70 km (44 miles) northeast from Baotou City
  • Area: about 20 hectares (50 acres)
  • Ticket fee: 60 yuan
  • Time needed: 4 hours
  • Opening hours: 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m
  • Best time to visit: JuneSeptember

Touring Wudangzhao Lamasery with Us

If you want to discover more about this cultural attraction and other highlights of China, contact us to start planning your tailor-made tour.