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Old Pagodas in Fangshan District

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With a total area of 2,019 square kilometers, Fangshan District lies in the southwest suburb of Beijing. With abundant natural resources and historical relics, Fangshan District has attracted many visitors as a famous tourist resort.
At present, there are totally 107 old pagodas in Fangshan District that account for nearly 50% of the existed old pagodas in Beijing. With its large amount and various types, it has the reputation about that--- those pagodas in Fangshan are the best in capital Beijing. Although the pagodas have stood in the wind for about thousand years, they have still kept their originals style and features.

Currently, the well-preserved pagodas are the Liangxiang Haotian Pagoda, North Pagoda in Yun Ju Temple, Flower Pagoda in Wanfo Hall, Yanxingdadelingta Pagoda, Grave Pagoda of Yao Guangxiao, Dougezhuang Pagoda, Zhenjiangying Pagoda and so forth. A majority of them are pagodas used to commemorate the monks buried there. Among them, the most typical one is the Liangxiang Haotian Pagoda which was first built in Liao dynasty with another name Duobaofo Pagoda. The body of the octagon pagoda is 47.5 meters high. It is the only pagoda built by airbrick with a five-floor pavilion style in Beijing area. There are watching holes in the cloister of each floor with military use during the wartime.
The most famous pagoda is the Tang Pagoda with a large amount. The oldest pagodas in Fangshan District are seven Tang Pagodas date back to Tang Dynasty. All of them are stone pagodas built by white marble. And the most famous one is the Pagoda of Princess Jinxian---who was the eighth young sister of emperor Xuanzong in Tang dynasty.

North Pagoda in Yun Ju Temple and Flower Pagoda in Wanfo Hall also have outstanding architecture style. North Pagoda in Yun Ju Temple, which also called Arhat Pagoda, was built in Liao dynasty. It is 30 meters high with the top like a bell and the bottom like an earthen bowl. The body of the pagoda is a two-floor pavilion with brick carved fresco about Jiyuetian in the base of the pagoda. Nowadays, only two pagodas of this style were existed in China. Flower Pagoda in Wanfo Hall lies in Wanfo Hall Village Hebei Town, and it was built in year 1070 in Liao dynasty. With 24 meters high, the upside of the pagoda is like a bamboo shoot. The very top of the pagoda is densely covered by small niches with each offering a figure of Buddha. Brick carved animal head are decorated under each niche. Viewing from a far distance, it likes a blossoming flower and it is known as the oldest flower pagoda with exact year in China.

Among the existing Ming pagodas, Grave Pagoda of Yao Guangxiao lies in the east of Changlesi Village is the typical one. It is 33 meters high with nine-floor of eave style and is an octagon building with each corner hanging a copper bell. The iron made pagoda is like a calabash gourd. Besides, the Ming Pagodas as Dougezhuang Pagoda and Zhenjiangying Pagoda have their own characteristics. A brick carved lotus petals is the supporting base of the Dougezhuang Pagoda and its top is also covered by lotus flowers. Zhenjiangying Pagoda is a stone pagoda of earthen bowl style with a square xumi base.

The old pagodas in Fangshan District have different features and styles with different dynasties. All of them are firm in structure, exquisite in appearance and unique in style. The outstanding craftsmanship represents great achievement of ancient China's architecture art and culture.

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