Yajishan Temples, Pinggu | The two temples on the peak of Yajishan, seen from the entrance of the middle temple
The two temples on the peak of Yajishan, seen from the entrance of the middle temple.

Yajishan Temple Fair, Pinggu District

Explore the bustling temple fair, and then climb the steep steps to reach the temples atop Yaji Mountain.

Level 3
3–4 hours of hiking over approx. 9km. (Can I do it?)

This hike is not currently scheduled

Contact us for schedule updates or set up a private hike

The three temples at Yajishan are locally famous, and every year there is a big temple fair.

The temple fair at Yajishan

A Buddhist fortune-teller at the fair
A Buddhist fortune-teller at the fair. (Click for larger image)

Every year there is a fair in the village below the mountain, and it's a lively and busy time to visit. We'll have time to get a good look at what's going on – fortune telling, street food and snacks, fireworks and incense burning, and various performers.

Take a look at the trip reports and photos at the end of the page to see what was happening at the fair on previous visits – very entertaining!

The temples at Yajishan

Burning incense in one of the temples on the way up Yaji Mountain
Burning incense in one of the temples on the way up the mountain. (Click for larger image)

The first temple is at the foot of the mountain and was originally built in the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644 AD). This temple was destroyed by the Japanese army during the war, and since been rebuilt.

There are another two temples at the top of the mountain - one built during the Tang Dynasty (618–907 AD), and the other built during the Qing Dynasty (1644–1911 AD). Both of these temples had to be rebuilt after the war as well.

The Qing Dynasty temple has quite an interesting story. It was used by Qing royalty, and the funds for its construction were raised by an old lady who lived in the nearby area. The old lady also helped out in the construction of the temple. There is a shrine to her in the temple, as well as records of visits by Qing Emperors.

Part of the diorama representing Taoist hell
Part of the diorama representing Taoist hell. (Click for larger image)

In one of the temples on the way up, there are two side halls with dioramas of Daoist hell, complete with horse-headed guards carrying axes and models that depict the several hundred ways that you will be tortured if you are not a good Daoist. If you're in more information about this sort of gruesomeness, take a look at the Wikipedia entry for the Daoist Realm of the Dead.

Yaji Mountain is named for its similarity to a hairstyle that was popular for young girls a long time ago. If you see the mountain from the right angle (and use a little imagination) you will be able to see the resemblance – think of the mountain as the head, and the two temples at the top of the mountain as the two cute pigtails sticking out from either side.

Hiking at Yajishan

The temples atop the mountain, seen from the back trail
The temples atop the mountain, seen from the back trail. (Click for larger image)

After we've looked about the temples, we'll follow an old trail that will take us around the back of the mountain, walking a path that winds through the peaks. We'll stop for a break at a nice lookout point and then follow steps down past the hotel and out on to the flat land at the foot of the mountain.

We'll have lunch at a local restaurant, and then you'll have another thirty minutes of free time to take another look around the stalls and streets

More photos

The temple fair

A vendor at the fair
A vendor at the fair. (Click for larger image)
A fortune-teller at the fair
A fortune-teller at the fair. (Click for larger image)
A Taoist fortune-teller at the fair
A Taoist fortune-teller at the fair. (Click for larger image)
Lanterns line a path
Lanterns line a path. (Click for larger image)
Playing the pipa by the streetside
Playing the pipa by the streetside. (Click for larger image)

The temples and hiking trail

Part of the diorama representing Taoist hell
Part of the diorama representing Taoist hell. (Click for larger image)
The view from the temples at the top of Yaji Mountain
The view from the temples at the top of Yaji Mountain. (Click for larger image)
The temples atop the mountain, seen from the back trail
The temples atop the mountain, seen from the back trail. (Click for larger image)
The temples in the distance, seen from 'Yellow Flower Top'
The temples in the distance, seen from 'Yellow Flower Top'. (Click for larger image)

Related content

Photos and trip reports: Yajishan Temple Fair, Pinggu District

  1. Yajishan Temple Fair, Pinggu District, 2019/05/12

    Yajishan Temple Fair, Pinggu District, 2019/05/12

    We visited Yajishan for a hike and a look at the temple fair—the fun of the temple fair was dampened by a bit of rain, and the hike took us through an area recently burned in a wildfire. See a set of 17 photos.

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