Located in the very north of Shanxi Province, Tianzhen County is 80 Kilometers from Datong. In the reign of Emperor Shunzhi (1625-1661) in the Qing Dynasty, Tiancheng Military Station and Zhenlu Military Station were integrated as Tianzhen Military Station which borrow the first character of the two former sites. In the reign of Emperor Yongzheng (1722-1735) of the Qing Dynasty, Tianzhen Military Station was named Tianzheng County. There are more than 130 scenic sports and historic sites, the most famous ones are Ciyun Temple which was first built in the Tang Dynasty and enjoys the reputation as the Great Temple to the North of Yanmen Pass of the Great Wall, the Han Dynasty Tombs in Shaliangpo Mountain Slope, Xianhua Temple in Panshan Mountain which was first built in the early period of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), Yuhuang Pavilion ( The Pavilion of Jade Emperor) of Xinping Fortress, Great Wall in the Ming Dynasty and summer resort-Shengtou Mountain.
Photographed by Liu Yujun
Ciyun Temple is located in west Street in Tianzhen County. The temple was first built in the Tang Dynasty (618-907) with the original name Fahua Temple and was restored in the 8th year of Kaitai (1019) of the Liao Dynasty (916-1125). In the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) there were expansion projects at the temple and it was named Ciyun Temple. Facing south and covering an area of 10,000 square meters, the temple has three courtyards with four main halls located on the central axis. The structure of the drum tower and beacon tower are octagonal in plan with two storeys and oval-shaped ceilings and combine typical architecture styles of the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368). They are the only examples of their kind from the Yuan and Ming Dynasties in Shanxi Province.
Chinese Edited and English Translated by Datong Foreign and Overseas Chinese Affairs Office
English Revised By Adrian Frost (UK)
慈云寺位于天镇县城西大街，原名法华寺。始建于唐代，辽开泰八年 (1019年) 修，明宣德年间续修，完善了殿、庑、堂、舍及塑像，并更名为慈云寺，成为规模较大的佛寺，被誉为“关北巨刹”。寺院坐北向南，占地一万平方米，为三进院落四重大殿对称式建筑群。钟鼓楼均为两层八角圆形穹庐式顶，其建筑形制具有元代建筑风格，是山西省现存元、明两代钟鼓楼中仅有的一例。