Despite being the oldest extant Buddhist Temple in Beijing, Fayuan Temple doesn’t attract a lot of tourists. It’s a bit difficult to reach and visually it isn’t as impressive of some of the city’s other temples. But what it does offer is an air of authenticity. There’s a Buddhist College attached to the temple and it is therefore a very active place of worship. The temple contains some interesting statues of Buddha and some important cultural relics. Originally built in 645AD, the present buildings mainly date from the early 15th Century. The surrounding hutongs are also appealing alleys to wander through.
Admission: ¥5. Open: 8:30-16:00.
Address: 7 Fayuan Si Qian Jie.
Directions: From the Cow Street Mosque, continue south along Niu Jie and turn left into Nanheng Xi Jie. Go straight until you reach a square on your left. The temple is at the north of the square. You can also cut through the hutongs from the mosque to the temple.
Show the taxi driver: 请带我去法源寺，谢谢。地址：法源寺前街7号。 (Please take me to Fayuan Temple. Thank you.)