Nanguan Mosque Yinchuan
Last updated by chinatravel at 2013-11-2
Nanguan Mosque in the city of Yinchuan, the capital of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region (aka Ningxia), is a very new mosque (it dates from 1981), not to be confused with the much older mosque by the same name in the neighboring province of Gansu (it will be remembered that Gansu Province and Ningxia are related, historically, and it is therefore quite probable that the new Nanguan Mosque in Yinchuan is deliberately named after the older mosque which formerly lay within ethnic Hui "territory").
Despite its young age, Yinchuan's Nanguan Mosque is located in the city's Old Town. It has nonetheless become the supreme landmark of the city of Yinchuan, thanks partly to the size of its grounds (it comprises large open spaces) and thanks partly to its two-storey, 22-meter height – a height that is accentuated by the fact of the city's relatively low skyline – but thanks mostly to the striking beauty of the mosque's distinctly "Arabic" architectural style; Yinchuan's Nanguan Mosque is namely one of the few mosques built in China since the Qing (CE 1644-1911) Dynasty that does not combine the otherwise obligatory mix of Chinese and Islamic architectural styles, where domes are replaced with pagoda-style roofs.
Granted, the minarets of Yinchuan's Nanguan Mosque are in no way "towering", but they are domed, and they are beautiful. Beautiful as well is the mosque's main entranceway portal, or gate, which has something of the majesty of the Taj Majal about it, even though it is by no means built to mimic that enchanting edifice. Yinchuan's Nanguan Mosque is also a mosque with a very large community of worshippers, which also adds to the landmark status of the mosque, especially during Friday prayers, when upwards of a thousand worshippers, clad in white skull caps, make their way to the mosque's main prayer hall (the prayer hall can hold up to 1300 worshippers). The mosque also has an exhibition hall that houses numerous texts from the Koran. The main color scheme of Yinchuan's Nanguan Mosque is green, the color that is considered by Muslims as a symbol of holiness.
Yinchuan's Nanguan Mosque has become an important regional venue for Islamic religious activities. In recent years, many religious leaders and envoys have come here to participate in conclaves, and Muslims from more than 90 countries and regions have come to worship in the mosque. Yinchuan's Nanguan Mosque has contributed to the cultural diversity of China in recent years by playing a special role in implementing the country's open policy towards ethnic and religious communities, fostering cross-cultural solidarity, and reaching out to foreigners, both those of Muslim as well as non-Muslim religious persuasion. Yinchuan's Nanguan Mosque also welcomes non-Muslims, though visitors are required to observe proper etiquette, including dressing modestly.
With its unique architectural style among the mosques of China, Yinchuan's Nanguan Mosque has also become one of the most popular tourist destinations in Ningxia for Muslims and non-Muslims alike.
Solo Adventure Tips:
Nanguan Mosque is located near South Gate Square in the Nanguan district of the city of Yinchuan.
How to Get There?
The mosque can easily be reached by foot from South Gate Square.
Ticket Price: 8 Yuan per person.
8 Yuan per person.
Opening Hours: From 8:00AM to 5:00PM.
From 8:00AM to 5:00PM.
The temperature difference between day and night is striking (there is little cloud cover here at night – or by day, for that matter – hence the temperature drops dramatically), so the traveller is advised to bring along clothing suitable for both extremes of temperature.
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