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Hanshan Temple

Hanshan Temple became well-known for the oft-quoted ancient poem Mooring to the Maple Bridge at Night (枫桥夜泊 in Chinese) that depicted the temple. Now the temple has developed into a historical and cultural area with beautiful natural sights.

Hanshan Temple Suzhou Hanshan Temple Suzhou
Bell Tower of Hanshan Temple the big bell in Hanshan Temple

The Hanshan Temple was originally built during the reign of Tianjian during the Liang Dynasty. The now yearly tourist tradition of listening to the bell tolls of the Hanshan Temple on the New Year's Eve has gradually morphed into an exceptionally grand occasion since its beginning in 1979. Each New Year's Eve thousands of visitors gather inside and outside the temple to listen to the one hundred and eight bell tolls and pray for luck and happiness in the New Year.

Hanshan Temple Suzhou Hanshan Temple Suzhou
The statue of the poet who made Hanshan Temple famous by his poem The Maple Bridge nearby Hanshan Temple

In the temple yard, the Oriental cherries are in full bloom and the osmanthus is sweet-scented in Spring. Green trees shade the entire yard. The Poem-hunting Corridor, Floating Star Pavilion, Rope Fastening rock, along with the old temple complete with yellow walls and lingering bell tolls are all windows into the past from which you can get a brief glimpse of the mind of man hundreds of years ago.

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