Silver Pagoda Loop | The Silver Pagodas, after a midwinter fall of snow
The Silver Pagodas, after a midwinter fall of snow.

Silver Pagoda Loop

Follow a trail through the Changping countryside, passing villages, quarries, and a local shrine on the way to the Silver Pagodas, a set of five well-preserved 600-year-old pagodas that are all that remains of a big Buddhist temple.

Level 3
3–4 hours start to finish over 10km. (Can I do it?)

This hike is not currently scheduled

Contact us for schedule updates or set up a private hike

We start off with a walk through a village, stopping for a quick look at a 300-year-old performance stage. The houses in the village are mostly built from granite – likely sourced from a nearby quarry. After walking through the village we'll follow a slowly ascending path through the countryside, passing an isolated shrine, fields, and concrete water reservoirs as we circle Silver Mountain.

The path takes us into a small village on the other side of the ridge, and we'll follow dirt streets through its outskirts, walking past donkeys and old stone houses on the way to the chestnut orchards behind the village.

Around the hill behind the village we'll find what's called the "Valley of Mercy", and this is where the path starts to get a lot steeper, heading past more quarries and following a hillside trail up to the top of Holly Mountain. The valley is not too merciful to the legs. It's quite a good climb!

Towards the top we'll find the Silver Pagoda park trail, and climb its steps to the viewing platform at the top. We can look down on the pagodas from there, and will have an unobstructed 360° view of the surrounding mountain peaks and countryside.

Views from the mountain behind the Silver Pagodas
Coming down from the top. (Click for larger image)

From the top we'll follow the park trail down to the pagodas, passing "North Beijing's Number One Waterfall" and many other local landmarks. There are two big bells in the park and we will pass by one of them – it's quite common to hear them toll as we walk, and we'll make a short detour to take a look.

The site dates back to the Tang Dynasty (618–907 AD), with the pagodas built in the 1400s. The silver bells of the pagodas used to ring in the breeze, and are the source of the name of this peaceful spot. The temples are long gone, burned during war.

After we're done walking, we'll head to a local restaurant for a big meal before heading back to the city.-

More photos

The Silver Pagodas stand on the site of a temple first built during the Tang Dynasty
The Silver Pagodas stand on the site of a temple first built during the Tang Dynasty. (Click for larger image)
A view of the pagoda and stupas from the rear of the site
A view of the pagoda and stupas from the rear of the site. (Click for larger image)
Fields behind Longevity Village
Fields behind Longevity Village. (Click for larger image)
Looking at an old quarry on the back side of Silver Mountain
Looking at an old quarry on the back side of Silver Mountain. (Click for larger image)

Because of the COVID-19 situation we have some extra terms and conditions for participation.

In particular:

  • DO NOT participate if you are sick or showing symptoms of fever and/or have an elevated temperature, or have been in close contact with someone who was.
  • DO NOT participate if you have not completed any required quarantine after your return to Beijing.
  • You MUST agree to the mitigation and prevention measures outlined here and that Beijing Hikers will not be held responsible if any participants become sick.

Please read in full here: Operating hikes under COVID-19 precautions

Related content

Photos and trip reports: Silver Pagoda Loop

  1. Silver Pagoda Loop, 2019/12/01

    Silver Pagoda Loop, 2019/12/01

    The Silver Pagoda Loop hike is in an area that is typically very quiet and empty, and we were the first to blaze a trail through the new snow for much of this walk—see 23 photos.
  2. Silver Pagoda Loop, 2019/03/31

    Silver Pagoda Loop, 2019/03/31

    On this hike to the Silver Pagodas we saw patches of blossoms and blooms in the bare hills—see 23 photos from villages, field trails,and the pagodas.
  3. Silver Pagoda Loop, 2018/12/09

    Silver Pagoda Loop, 2018/12/09

    See 14 photos from the Silver Pagoda Loop—a village visit, a shrine by an ancient pine tree, views from the peak of Silver Mountain, plus the pagodas.
  4. Silver Pagoda Loop, 2018/09/02

    Silver Pagoda Loop, 2018/09/02

    We did the hike around the Silver Pagodas on a drizzly and misty day—see 15 photos from the pagodas and surrounding countryside.
  5. Silver Pagoda Loop hike, 2016/12/04

    Silver Pagoda Loop hike, 2016/12/04

    See 14 photos from our Silver Pagoda Loop hike, a stroll through the countryside that passes by the serene site of the Silver Mountain Pagoda Forest.

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