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Brief / profile
The Eight Outer Temples is a collective name of 12 temples namely the Boren Temple, Boshan Temple, Puning Temple, An'yuan Temple, Pule Temple, Puyou Temple, Putuozongcheng Temple, Guang'an Temple, Suxiang Temple, Luohan Hall, the temple for praying happiness and longevity and Kuixing Attic in the shape of numerous stars surrounding the moon in a semicircle to symbolize the national unification and minority solidification. This construction complex is the combination of the Han, Mongolian and Tibetan architecture, reflecting their cultures and listed as the world cultural heritage site in 1994.

Location
This temple complex is located to the north and east of Chengde Summer Resort in Chengde, Hebei Province. Among these temples, the Puren Temple, Pule Temple and Anyuan Temple are located in the east of the Wulie River; to their north is the Puning Temple. Xumifushou Temple, the Putuozongcheng Temple and the Shuxiang Temple are in the north of the Summer Resort.

Why got its this name

The temples stand in the north of the Great Wall and eight of them were administered directly by Lifan Court in Qing dynasty, thus it got this name.

Function or value in the past

These temples were the emperors’ summer residence and also used by the upper classes and dignitaries of the west and north minorities to have an audience with the emperor in the Qing Dynasty.

History
They were originally constructed in 1713 during the period of the reign of Emperor Kangxi in the Qing Dynasty and completed in 1780 after 67 years’ effort. Among them, the Puren Temple and Boshan Temple were built during the period of Kangxi’s reign and the other ten were finished during the time under Qianlong’s rule.

Architecture / Structure / Each scenery.

When visiting the Eight Outer Temples, it seems that you come to a Buddha’s’ country. You must be impressed by its grand appearance and delicate architectures. The architecture was mainly built in 3 styles: Tibetan style, Han style and the combination of the two styles. Although every temple has its own individility, the overall pattern is a harmonious unity. Among the 12 temples, 4 principle temples will be described as follows.
The Putuozongcheng Temple is the largest and magnificent one, covering an area of 220,000 square meters. It was constructed after the Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet, thus it’s also known as Little Potala. This temple was built to celebrate Emperor Qianlong’s 60-year-old birthday and his mother’s 80-year-old birthday.
Another important temple is Xumifushou Temple which was built for the 6th Panchen Lama (the head of Tibet). In order to celebrate Emperor Qianlong’s 70-year-old birthday, the head in Tibet spent one year to Chengde. Then Qianlong ordered to construct this temple for him to have a rest. It combined the Han and Tibetan architectural styles.
Constructed in 1755 during Emperor Qianlong, Puning Temple is also very noticeable. Also known as 'Big Buddha Temple, it was modeled after the Samye Temple-the earliest Buddhist temple in Tibet. There’s the world’s largest woodcarving Buddha in this temple. With 22.28-meter height and 15-meter width, this Buddha has thousands of hands and eyes, which is different from other Buddhas.
The last major temple is Pule Temple which was built in 1766 to memorize the representatives of the Kazak, Khalkhas and other ethnic peoples who came to Chengde. It looks like a round pavilion. 72 woods in the temple symbolize 72 kinds of wisdom of Buddha.
All in all, the architectures, inscriptions and sculptures in these temples are of top importance to study the history, culture and religion.

Present condition
Of the 12 temples, the Boshan Temple, Guang’an Temple and Kuixing Attic do not exist at present. While the Puyou Temple and Luohan Hall suffered serious damage and only several sections left. Only 7 temples are well-preserved and 6 of them are open to the public—Putuozongcheng Temple, Puning Temple, Xumifushou Temple, Pule Temple, Anyuan Temple and Puyou Temple radiating its unique luster.

Transportation.

Visitors can take bus No.6 to get to the Eight Outer Temples for a tour.

Admission fee.

In peak seasons, the admission fee for Puning Temple is RMB50 and RMB 40 in low seasons. As for Putuozongcheng Temple, you need to spend RMB 40 in peak seasons and RMB 30 in low seasons. The admission fee for Xumifushou Temple is RMB 30 in peak seasons and RMB20 in low seasons. Tourists should pay RMB30 in peak seasons to have a tour in Pule Temple and RMB20 in low seasons. The fee for Anyuan Temple is RMB 30 all the year around.

Note

Besides, you can have a tour in Eight Outer Temple from 8:00 to 17:30.

 

 


   
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