Exploring the city of Xian
Trip Start Jun 16, 2008
36Trip End Jul 20, 2008
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Our first stop was the famous Shaanxi Historical Museum. It was incredible!!!! There were relics, pottery, utensils, art, building, pottery and so much more from every single dynasty in Chinese history. It really showed the history of China through its periods. It even started with a recreation of the first man found in China 1,150,000 years ago. The museum was just fantastic!
After lunch we visited the Big Wild Goose Pagoda which was built in the Tang Dynasty when a monk from China went to India to learn about Buddhism. He returned and built this Pagoda to house the knowledge of Buddhism in China. As the symbol of the old-line Xian, Big Wild Goose Pagoda is a well-preserved ancient building and a holy place for Buddhists. Originally built in 652 during the reign of Emperor Gaozong of the Tang Dynasty (618-907), it functioned to collect Buddhist materials that were taken from India by the hierarch Xuanzang.
The final stop of the day was the Grand Mosque. This was a Muslim site built in 742AD during the Tang Dynasty. Since it was Friday there just happened to be hundreds of Muslims of all ethnicities worshipping here was was a good site to see. After the Mosque there was a large Muslim market. I enjoyed seeing everything for sale here. I bought a traditional Chinese silk shirt and a bracelet.
The Great Mosque of Xian is the largest and best preserved of the early mosques of China. Built primarily in the Ming Dynasty when Chinese architectural elements were synthesized into mosque architecture, the mosque resembles a fifteenth century Buddhist temple with its single axis lined with courtyards and pavilions. The Great Mosque of Xian is thought to have existed as early as the seventh century. The mosque that stands today, however, was begun in 1392 in the twenty-fifth year of the Ming Dynasty.
I returned to the hotel early today at 3:30PM and had the rest of the day to relax. I used the internet for an hour and just unwound.
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