Serving as a holy site for Buddhist followers, the Big Wild Goose Pagoda remains a purely and beautifully preserved structure just 4 kilometers from the city center in the southern suburb of Xian. The simple pagoda is a part of the Da Ciâ€™en temple complex and is regarded as a National Key Cultural Relic.
The structure was first erected in 652 during the Tang Dynasty(618-907) as a sanctuary for Buddhist relics obtained by the abbot Xuanzang throughout his 17 year journey along the ancient Silk Road to India, the birthplace of Buddhism. Granted permission by Emperor Gaorong, Xuanzang built the pagoda next to Da Ciâ€™en Temple and housed in it over 1,300 volumes of translated sutras. Initially the pagoda was constructed at a height of 60 meters, but after later reconstructions the temple now stands at 64.5 meters, reaching 7 stories in height. A twisting staircase rises within the brick structure, awarding panoramic views of Xian City from all sides of the square cone pagoda. Beautiful images of Buddha are engraved on the interior walls of the structure.
The home of the Big Wild Goose Pagoda, Da Ciâ€™en Temple, was built in 648 in commemoration of the queen. In front of the grand temple stands a statue of Zuanzang, the pagodaâ€™s leading founder. Charming gardens and fountains create a welcoming landscape on the temple grounds. Numerous sculptural pieces and benches make the North Square where the temple and pagoda are located an enjoyable place to relax and appreciate the scenery.