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Three Pagodas

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Introdution
Three Pagodas are located about 1.5km north of Dali Ancient Town. They are standing at the east foot of the tenth peak of the massive Mt. Cangshan and facing the west shore of the Erhai Lake. Three Pagodas are made of brick and covered with white mud. As its name implies, the Three Pagodas comprise three independent pagodas forming a symmetric triangle. The elegant, balanced and stately style is unique in China’s ancient Buddhist architectures, which makes it a must-see in the tour of Dali. The Three Pagodas, visible from miles away, has been a landmark of Dali Cityand selected as a national treasure meriting preservation in China.

History
The main pagoda, known as Qianxun Pagoda, reportedly built during 824-840 AD by King Quan Fengyou of the Nanzhao State, is 69.6 meters (227 feet) high and known as one of the tallest pagodas in Chinese history. The central pagoda is square shaped and composed of 16 stories; each story has multiple tiers of upturned eaves. There is a carved shrine containing a white marble sitting Buddha statue at the center of each fa?ade of every story. The body of the pagoda is hollow from the first to the eighth story, surrounded with 3.3 meters (10 feet) thick walls. 

In 1978, more than 700 Buddhist antiques, including sculptures made of gold, silver, wood or crystal and documents, were found in the body during a major repairing work. The designers of the pagoda are supposed to have come from Xi’an, the capital of Tang Dynasty at that time and the location of another pagoda-Big Goose Pagoda, which shares the similar style but is 200 years older. The other two sibling pagodas, built about 100 years later, stand to the northwest and southwest of Qianxun Pagoda. They are 42.19 meters (140 feet) high. Different from Qianxun Pagoda, they are solid and octagonal with ten stories. The center of each side of every story is decorated with a shrine containing a Buddha statue. Three Pagodas are well known for their resilience; they have endured several man-made and natural catastrophes over more than a thousand years.

Information
Address:
Chongsheng Temple Three Pagodas Tourism Culture Area, 1.8 km north away from Dali Ancient City in Yunnan Province

Opening Time: 09:00-17:00

Recommended Visiting Hours: 2 to 3 hours

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