Nanshan Cultural Tourism Zone

The Nanshan Guanyin

The Nanshan Guanyin by Matthew Stinson. Sourced via Flickr under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License.

Nanshan Cultural Tourism Zone is a major park sited about 40km south west of Sanya City on Hainan island in the far south of China. It is one of the major tourist attractions in Sanya. It contains several attractions for tourists. Of note are the Major and Minor Caves and the Nanshan Temple. The park covers an aea of 66 acres and surprisingly is only a few years old, being completed on April 12th 1998. This makes it the largest Buddhist site established since the beginning of the People's Republic of China. This timing of the opening was made to coincide with the 2000 year anniversary of Buddhism's arrival in China.

The temple takes up 10 acres of the park. It contains some replicas of Tang Dynasty architecture. The entrance to the temple contains Buddhist statues and artworks. There is a Golden and Jade statue of Guan Yin (the bodhisattva). It is 3.8 metres high and covered with gold and silver totaling 100kg and encrusted with 120 carats of diamonds and other jewels. Within the statue are two sacred Buddhist relics.

In front of the temple, on a promontory out into the sea, stands a colossal 108 metre high statue of Guan Yin. This statue, made of copper and painted white, is the four tallest statue in the world and the tallest of Guan Yin. It is taller than the famous Statue of Liberty in New York. The statue has three near identical faces. One faces inland and the other two look out to sea. One aspect depicts Guan Yin cradling a sutra in the left hand and gesturing the Vitarka Mudra with the right, the second with her palms crossed, holding a string of prayer beads, and the third holding a lotus. This has earned the statue the name of the south China Sea Guan Lin Statue. It took six years to construct the statue and it was enshrined on the 24th of April 2005.

Map showing location of Nanshan Cultural Tourism Zone

Above: Location of Nanshan Cultural Tourism Zone in Sanya, Hainan, China