Biezhuan Temple, which lies in the middle of the Zhanglao Peak, Danxia Mountain Scenic Area, is one of the ten most notable temples of Guangdong.
Built in 1662, i.e. the first year in the reign of Emperor Kangxi of the Qing Dynasty, it was frequented by a large number of pilgrims and is one of the three largest Buddhist monasterires in Northern Guangdong ( the other two being the Famen Temple in Ruyuan county and the Nanhua Temple in Qujiang County). Up on the main gate of the temple, there are four Chinese characters: Bie Chuan si , meaning Biechuan Chan Buddhist Monastery. They were written by Li Hanhun, who was then chairman of the Guangdong provincial Government of the RPC. Going through the gate, we can see many engravings on the red cliff. Among them the two big Chinese characters Dan Xia, 5-6 square feet each, are the most beautiful. They were written by an official of the Qing Dynasty.Biechuan Temple is constructed in more or less the same layout as other Buddhist monasteries . It consists of the Hall of the Heavenly kings, the bell and drum towers, the sakyamuni Hall and the Hall of the Goddess of Mercy and so on. Now you can look around on your own for a while. We’ll meet half an hour later at the entrance and will go down-hill, by the same way as where we came up, to the pier to take a boat-ride on the Jinjiang River so that you may feast your eyes on the beautiful scenery along the river.
The Jinshi Cave, meaning Colorful Rock Cave in English. The inside of this cave is a Buddhist monastery consisting of the thousand Buddha Hall, the Guanyin Hall and the Sakyamuni Hall etc. Among these halls, the Guanyin Hall for the Goddess of Mercy is the largest, 30 meters deep and 4 meters high with adequate space to accommodate a hundred pilgrims at the same time. In this hall there are many images of the Goddess of Mercy in her different incarnations, 32 in all, which are all made to be lifelike with different facial expressions. In the sakyamuni Hall there is a piece of rock that shapes like a dragon. It is called “Bian se Long”, meaning “color-changing dragon” or chameleon, because its color changes with the season like a chameleon whose color changes according to its background. It is light green in spring, dark green in summer, yellowish green in autumn and brownish yellow in winter. Why is that? It is because on the surface of the rock is growing a kind of alga that is highly water-absorbing. The alga is lush and green when water is adequate in rainy seasons while in dry seasons, when water is insufficient, it turns yellow or brown. On the cliff outside the cave, there are two big Chinese characters ”jin yan”, meaning” colorful rock cave”. They were written by Zhao Rulai, a man of letters of the southern song Dynasty (1127-1279AD), and are the earliest engravings on cliffs in the Danxia Mountain.