Often regarded as the symbol of Dali, the Three Pagodas and Chongsheng Temple Complex can be found approximately 1.5 kilometers north of Dali Old Town, along highway 214.
The biggest pagoda, Qianxun, was built during the 9th century. It is square in shape, has sixteen stories, and stands 69 meters tall, making it one of the tallest pagodas in all of China. It’s sister pagodas were built around a century later, are octagonal in shape, have ten stories each, and stand 42 meters tall. Together they form a perfect triangle at the base of the CangShan mountain range, facing east towards ErHai lake. Each story has a small Buddha shrine on the exterior.
In 1978 approximately 700 Buddhist relics were found inside Qianxun pagoda during renovation work. These included gold and silver sculptures and important documents which revealed much of the history of ancient Dali that we know today.
Behind the Three Pagodas is a pretty little lake known as Reflection Pond, which when caught in the right light reflects the image of the Three Pagodas offering amazing photo opportunities.
Chongsheng Temple is a huge sprawling complex originally built at the same time as the Qianxun pagoda. It was completely destroyed in a fire during the time of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1912). In 2005 the complex was re-built and is now one of the largest temple complexes in China.
Renowned for their resilience, the Three Pagodas have withstood all manner of disasters, both natural and man-made, during their 1100 year history, including wars, a number of severe earthquakes.
A visit to the Three Pagodas is an essential part of any visit to Dali. A single entry fee gives you access to the Three Pagodas area, and the Chongsheng Temple complex. Please note that you are unable to go inside any of the pagodas. These magnificent architectural gems are meant to be viewed from the outside.
Opening Hours: From 8am – 6pm Daily
Entry Cost: 120rmb