We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“A highlight of our tour” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hengshan Hanging Temple (Xuankong si)

Hengshan Hanging Temple (Xuankong si)
Hengshan, Datong, China
Improve this listing
Ranked #2 of 51 Attractions in Datong
4.5 of 5 stars 317 Reviews
Type: Architectural Buildings, Religious Sites, Historic Sites, Landmarks/ Points of Interest, Cultural
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: The monastery was built on the cliffs of Mt. Hengshan, one of the five most sacred mountains in China. The caves and halls are connected by winding corridors and bridges.
Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
29 attraction reviews
Reviews in 43 cities Reviews in 43 cities
53 helpful votes 53 helpful votes
“A highlight of our tour”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 30, 2013

we chose our tour just to see this and were not disappointed. At first sight it looks a bit small and strangely positioned but went you get to it, it is amazing. You seem to be perched precariously on the side of the mountain, yet I felt perfectly safe. The different angles and views are stunning. We absolutely loved it and are so glad we went there.

Visited May 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

317 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Indonesian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Cambridge, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
668 reviews 668 reviews
394 attraction reviews
Reviews in 111 cities Reviews in 111 cities
297 helpful votes 297 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 28, 2013

The Hanging Temple is one of the craziest structures I have ever seen, climbed or been in. It is not only ancient and beautiful, but it is an adrenaline pumper. The rails are really short and when there are pile-ups of tiny Chinese retirees swarming around you, you feel a little nervous. Looking down the sheer drop is balanced by wonderful architecture and beautiful sculptures and artwork.

It is without doubt on of the best things I have visited in a year in China. I highly highly recommend you visit.

Visited May 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
Top Contributor
170 reviews 170 reviews
118 attraction reviews
Reviews in 112 cities Reviews in 112 cities
379 helpful votes 379 helpful votes
“Great lifelike figures from the 3 religions”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 29, 2013

This along with Yungang grottoes are the main reason to visit Datong.The monastery is about a 90 minute ride from Datong.Cits group tour or a car hire are probably the best ways to visit the temple.Be prepared to arrive earlier in the morning to avoid the tour buses.Some people who have a fear of heights may experience vertigo.After paying the entrance fee you will cross the river bed and begin taking pictures.The trail has signs in english with arrows showing you the direction to go in.

When you reach the buildings you will be able to enter some rooms and take pictures ,or in some cases you just take pictures from the openings in the rooms.Many ancient porcelain and clay figures, beautifully painted and preserved await .The lighting in the rooms is fair to good and some editing options will be needed.Many unique statues and facial expressions are observed in the various rooms.In a few instances you will need to bend and crawl to get around the corridors.The feeling of vertigo seems to be the strongest when you are standing still ,do to the crowds.If you are moving the vertigo seems to disapear.

The walk around the monastery takes about 25 minutes ,so a second trip around is a must if it is not too crowded.Definetly worth the trip from Beijing.

Visited April 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Geneva, Switzerland
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Unique in many ways”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2013

The coal-mining city of Datong in the far north of Shanxi province begins to attract visitors with two cultural/historical marvels: the Hanging Monastery and Yungang Grottoes, both well worth a long train journey from Beijing... The Monastery should be visited if possible before 10 a.m. (before tour buses arrive) ideally on a sunny day. There is a moderately steep climb by stairs to the Monastery buildings. Once you reach the those flimsy-looking wooden structures and start walking along very narrow external corridors, plus more steep and narrow stairs, your mind is at first fully occupied with two questions: how on earth all this remains stuck to the cliff, and how easy is it to fall over the railing that is barely knee-high? Soon however, you relize that it is exhilarating, you have never seen anything quite like it, and you can't wait to tell everybody about it :=)

Visited April 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
69 reviews 69 reviews
18 attraction reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
44 helpful votes 44 helpful votes
“Absolutely impressive”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2013

The hanging temple is absolutely impressive. Pictures already show it is, but it takes standing in front (or in it) to realize just how spectacular it is. Apart from the unusual set-up, the temple itself is also very nice. We visited the temple during a national holiday and therefore inside the temple, we actually had to line up. I'm not sure if it's always like that, but it sure didn't make it very enjoyable as lining up is a vague concept among local tourists.

The temple is about a 2 hour drive away from Datong (the main city from which people visit it I guess). We took a tour with CITS travel which combined it with the grottoes. I can definitely very warmly recommend CITS travel - correct prices and absolutely impeccable service (in english).

Visited April 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Hengshan Hanging Temple (Xuankong si) also viewed


Been to Hengshan Hanging Temple (Xuankong si)? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Hengshan Hanging Temple (Xuankong si), register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.