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Gedan Songzanlin Monastery

* The largest Gelupa monastery in Yunnan, known as little Potala Palace.
History:  Built from 127
Distance from Kunming: 700Km
Entrance fee: RMB 85 per person 
Open Hours: 7:30~18:30
* Address:  Shangri-La, Yunnan      *  TEL:  0887-8222455
* Best visiting time: All year around

Songzanlin Monastery
Songzanlin Monastery
Songzanlin Monastery
Songzanlin Monastery
Songzanlin Monastery
Songzanlin Monastery
Songzanlin Monastery
Songzanlin Monastery
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Gedan Songzanlin Monastery sitting at 5 kilometers to the Northwest Shangri-la County of Diqing Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture.It enjoys the reputation as "little Potala Palace"
 
It is the largest Tibetan Buddhist monastery in Yunnan, which belongs to the Gelu religious sect. The monastery was approved by Emperor Kangxi of the Qing dynasty in 1679, and the location was selected by the Fifth Dalai Lama. It's a mimicry architecture of of Budala Palace, standing against a mountain, which took three years to complete its construction. Emperor Yongzheng bestowed the Han name 'Gui Hua Si'. The Emperor's brother, Prince Heshuoguo, presented the Gold Board which reads 'Kind clouds cover vast territory'.
 
Inside the main complex, many historical Buddhist events are well-illustrated by three bronze statues and the colourful murals. They represent the Lord Buddha’s life, and the wheel of life that characterize the six realms of existence: heaven, demigods, humankind, hell, hungry ghosts and animals. However the centre of the wheels symbolizes the three harms of life - ignorance, hatred and greed. 
 

The monastery has many treasures. The most famous are the eight gold-covered sculptures of Sakyamuni, fashioned between the time of the Fifth and Seventh Dalai Lamas. In the early Qing Dynasty, the rulers of Lijiang, the Mu Family, presented the monastery with dozens of bronze sculptures, the "Ganzur" scriptures hand-written in liquid gold, scriptures written on pattra leaves, gold lamps, and many exquisite gilded silver incense burners. Every morning, noon and evening, the solemn tolling of the bells and the sound of the drums from the bell and drum towers can be heard several kilometers away. 

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