Pagoda of Fogong Temple in Shanxi

Pagoda of Fogong Temple

Pagoda of Fogong Temple, also known as the Yingxian Pagoda, which is located in Yingxian County, and about 70 kilometers south of Datong. It is also the wonder of the wooden architecture field. The Wooden Pagoda is the oldest and highest wooden structure in China and the Wooden Pagoda is a perfect combination of science, art and religion. The construction of the octagonal pagoda began in 1,056 during the Liao Dynasty and was completed in 1195 during the Jin Dynasty, has about 900 years of history. It has now also been placed under national emphases under the Cultural Relics Protection Units.

History of Pagoda of Fogong Temple

The pagoda was built by Emperor Daozong of Liao at the site of his grandmother’s family home. The pagoda, which has survived several large earthquakes throughout the centuries, reached a level of such fame within China. The extant archway, bell and drum towers, the shrine of Sakyamuni Buddha were all rebuilt in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), only the wooden pagoda was the original building of the Liao Dynasty. It is regarded as the ‘First Pagoda in the World’ and a gem in the architectural field.

Main Attractions of Pagoda of Fogong Temple


  • Built with about 54 different kinds of brackets, the greatest amount for any Liao Dynasty structure. And jointed only by the tenors and mortises without any nails or rivets at all!
  • With a unique octagon structure in each tier, and a special designed lightning top, the pagoda can still stand firmly and remains intact.
  • The large Buddha statues hosted in the Wooden Pagoda show different countenances and postures, and display a very high level of craftsmanship. On the first storey of the pagoda stands a statue of Sakaymuni Buddha of 11 meters high, solemn and respectful, and 6 walls of the storey are painted with six portraits of Buddhas and 12 flying Apsarases in vivid and elegant posture.  There is a quadrangular Buddha on the third storey and the Buddha faces four directions. A sitting statue of Sakayamuni Buddha is located in the center of the fifth storey with 8 giant Bodhisattvas sitting in eight directions.

How to get to Pagoda of Fogong Temple

Travel with ChinaDragonTours (top recommended)

If you want to get out of the traffic and hassle of navigation, you can book a private tour package that includes visiting, dining and transfer from us. Our local guide and driver will escort you to the Pagoda of Fogong Temple and most convenient way and take care of all the details. You just have to focus on the visiting.

Independent Traveler


You can take bus in Datong Xinnan passenger station or North Shuozhou passenger station, there are buses to Yingxian every day, which takes about 1.5 hours.

Traffic in Yingxian County

Yingxian county is not big, and it will not be too far from the scenic spot on foot.

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Edited by Winnie/张赢