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Review of Shaolin Temple

Shaolin Temple
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Private Day Tour of Luoyang Shaolin Temple and Longmen Grottoes Including Lunch
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Xi'an to Louyang Private Day Tour by High Speed Train: Longmen Grottoes and...
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One Day Tour: Luoyang Shaolin Kung Fu Trip by High Speed Train From Xi'an
Ranked #1 of 31 things to do in Dengfeng
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Owner description: This is a famous martial arts monastery, the birthplace of both kung fu and Zen Buddhism
Level 4 Contributor
26 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed September 24, 2013 via mobile

The temple was amazing, first of all, this a a whole day excursion, otherwise you do not do it justice.We started by taking the Songshan cable car route that leads to the hanging bridge, its an extra 50 RMB, but the view is so worth it,not to mention the amazing photo opportunities.The other cable car leads to the white buddha and an older, smaller temple, that has an extra admissions fee. Its quite a stiff walk, wear comfy shoes and some sunglasses, its up and down for six kilometres, so better to have the whole day, than rush and exhaust yourself.also, its better to buy Shaolin themed souvenirs from the stall owners operating on the walking trial, than at the gift shop at the entrance, its cheaper by a mile. The bead ladies can be insistent, just shake your heads, it works. After the walking trail, we did the temple, was so beautiful, you can see the history, outside the temple, there are hawkers selling photo opportunities with monks, but inside there are 2 unobtrusive gift shops, the 1 one is on the second terrace, it sells incense for prayers among other things, take note no photos are allowed by the altar, there is a english sign too, so no excuses. We unfortunately missed the last kung fu show at the training academy, but saw an impromptu performance, which was awesome. Ill be going back again definitely, still so much i havent seen. Also, before the cable cars, the bathrooms are quite decent, on the walking trail, not so much, so i recommend going before you get on the cable cars, also there are frequent stalls that sell drinks, so dont worry about getting dehydrated.

Visited September 2013
1 Thank Engela C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Prague, Czech Republic
Level 6 Contributor
127 reviews
98 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
“Home of chinese martial arts”
Reviewed September 23, 2013

Shaolin Temple is the birthplace of wushu (we were told that kung fu is actually not correct term for decribing chinese martial arts). Architecture is awesome here and we visited the fight show at the school too. Holy batman, those kids can do some awesome tricks! Pagoda forest graveyard was also nice. Interesting fact - gravestone of every abbot of the temple is decorated with items that became typical for his epoch. So no wonder that the gravestone of the last deceased abbot is decorated with camera and notebook carving :-)

Visited August 2013
Thank David K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cincinnati, Ohio
Level 4 Contributor
31 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Beautiful place”
Reviewed September 12, 2013

Beautiful place, horrible bathrooms. Be prepared. I enjoyed seeing the Pagoda Forest. We also went to the Kung Fu show. We did go up to Mt. Song due to time but it looked beautiful.

Visited August 2013
Thank DWuest0619
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Beijing, China
Level 6 Contributor
137 reviews
63 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
“I'm very glad I went, and will return to see Mt. Songshan”
Reviewed August 19, 2013

Let me start by saying that I am VERY glad that we made the effort to see this sight. It is very interesting to see years of history and culture appreciated by the locals and the children that we saw. We were there on a very hot, muggy Sunday in July and we were drenched in sweat from the moment we arrived. We still feel it was worth it.

We made a bathroom stop before entering and, honestly, this was THE most disgusting public toilet I had been into in all of China. Had I not been desperate, I would have held it. Be warned!! Calling it "disgusting" is actually probably not a strong enough word. "Pits of sewage with walls" is probably more accurate. And also beware that a lot of the older Chinese women do not lock the bathroom doors. Open them slowly. This is a country-wide finding for me.

We were with a tour guide, but also a large group that included 5 kids, aged 16-4. Our guide, Tim, was perfect; telling us just enough info to get the gist of things, but not bore the kids to tears. We first attended the Kung-Fu show which is about 30 minutes and is free. We waited outside for a very long 30 minutes to get indoors. Another warning...when someone tells you a venue is air-conditioned, it is likely not the kind of air conditioning most Westerners are accustomed to. You will feel a few small puffs of coolish air, but you will not be blasted into Popsicle mode. This is another thing we have found to be country-wide. The show was fine, but we were not prepared for the fact that after the seats and floor space are filled, people will stand and sit wherever they can. I was on the aisle and a lady sat/leaned on my arm and side the entire show. Some of the shorter kids sat on laps to be able to see.

After the show we entered the actual temple with our guide and we were surprised by how large it actually is. Having been to many temples, the kids were most interested in lighting incense and sliding down the stair-side ramps. We were initially worried that it would be irreverent, but we saw many Chinese children do it, as well as at least one young monk-in-training. That much being said, the original floor with the curves and slants were very exciting, as were the holes in the trees. Inside of the actual temple we only saw one small table with items for sale. I mention that because so many people have mentioned being put off by the items for sale. If you tour China, get used to the non-stop sales tactics. There are a lot of people here to feed and they are providing a meager income for families and children.

After the temple, we visited the Pagoda Forest. It was beautiful. They are interesting to see as standing monuments to people who have given their time and energies for their beliefs. We had hoped to be able to take the cable car to the top of Mt. Songshan, but we chose not to. It was cloudy and misty and felt we wouldn't have been able to see much beyond where we were. I will actually return some time to be able to make that trip up the mountain.

Our favorite part of the entire tour was actually as we were departing; we walked by the many groups of kids of all ages practicing their skill. I was mesmerized by a group of about 30 practicing a routine in the middle of a cement lot with padding placed on the ground. They chanted, yelled, tumbled, snaked, and moved with awe-inspiring uniformity. They were probably about 6-7 years old. Seeing their enthusiasm and skill ended our tour on a beautiful high note. This place might not be for everyone, but if you go with the attitude of seeing hard-working kids having fun, you will enjoy it.

Visited July 2013
1 Thank PandasNPugs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Level 5 Contributor
46 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Too Commercialized.”
Reviewed August 1, 2013

Its all about business with monks everywhere sitting at a table or with bowl offering some kind of wares for sale

Visited July 2013
Thank Sandra James S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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