You will stay overnight in the 1800 years old Bailin Zen Monastery, the only active Zen temple in China that accepts foreign guests and allows you to stay with the monks. However, don't be put off by the idea that you'd have to live like a monk--the dormitories have soft beds, hot water for bathing, and Western toilets.
Spend a weekend in the temple: learn about "the art of life" from the monks themselves, join the monks for daily meals (lots of fresh fruit, steamed bread, fried vegetables and rice congee) and sleep in the comfortable dormitory equipped with all the basics. Participate in actual prayer ceremonies and meditation with the monks inside the temple, have a discussion with monks on Zen and life, and attend a meditation workshop. The experience will open your eyes and your mind.
Then we will drive to the Yu Family Stone Village (Yujia Shitou Village), one of the least touristy villages of north China. Located in Jing Jing County, 80 kilometers from Shijiazhuang, it is the best example of stone architecture, the only national-level protected ancient village in Hebei. Yujia Village is nick-named stone city because it owns 4000 stone houses, 3700 meters long stone slab paved street, over 1000 stone well and pool, and 200 stone stelas. The local villagers' life haven't been changed so much as in other villages near the big cities.
* Bailin Temple is the only active Zen temple in China that accepts foreign guests and allows you to stay with the monks (but you have soft beds, hot water and western toilets)
* The Stone Village is typical vilage of old northern China, one of the least touristy villages of north China, and the best example of stone architecture.
* Local villagers still live their life like it was several decades ago.
* The peaceful and secluded temple is an ideal retreat in the journey "to know one' s self".
* Note: Our visit with the Zen monks requires special observance to the dignity and sanctity of their routine. As such, we regret that young children are not eligible for inclusion in this activity.
Day 1. Beijing / Shijiazhuang / Zhaozhou
- Arrive at the Beijing West Railway Station,catch the morning fast-speed train to Shijiazhuang, capital of Hebei.
- Have lunch in a restaurant in Shijiangzhuang.
- Head to Bailin Monastery in Zhaoxian County (one hour's drive).
- Check in the monastery dormitory and then tour around the compound.
- Learn basic information about Zen buddhism and rules of meditation. Follow monks to enter into their canteen and perform ritual and have dinner.
- After dinner break and then join the evening meditation pracise.
- Stay overnight in the temple.
Day 2. Zhaozhou / Jingxing (Yujia Stone Village) Shijiazhuang / Beijing
- Get up in early morning (06:00) for breakfast.
- Break, attend their daily routine, e.g. morning chanting.
- Leave the monastery for Jingxing County after lunch in the monastery.
- Visit the Yujia (Yu Family) Stone Village, the best example of the ancient rural North China. As the only national-level protected ancient village in Hebei, it is much less touristy than the villages around Beijing.
Yujia Village is nick-named stone city because it owns 4000 stone houses, 3700 meters long stone slab paved street, over 1000 stone well and pool, and 200 stone stelas. Besides, many stone
- Drive back to Shijiazhuang and arrive at Beijing West Railway Station at around 19:00-20:00.
- Our visit with the Zen monks requires special observance to the dignity and sanctity of their routine. As such, we regret that young children are not eligible for inclusion in this activity.
- The time to go to bed and morning wake-up (06:30) are much earlier than our usual schedule. The room is very basic, with only one simple bed
and bedside light. No any entertainment in the room or in the monastery.
- You will stay overnight in the temple but will not share room with monks.
You will have your own rooms shared with other CCC travellers. Three to four beds in one room. You have to share with other people of same sex (no couple are allowed to sleep in one room).
- You will have to eat monk's vegetarian food together with the monks in their canteen.
- No speaking or free chat during the daily routine and meal time.
CCC does not offer regular set packages for this tour. However we are happy to help you plan a private custom-made one. Please scroll this web page down to check prices and propose a date and your own group.
2-day bespoke tour prices
Journey by high-speed bullet train Beijing-Shijiazhuang-Beijing (1hour 13 minutes)
An English-speaking guide of CCC from Beijing.
(Please note that no English services are available in the monastery, so you will book a CCC guide to go from Beijing with you to the Monastery, where they don't receive foreigners alone without a guide).
Experienced Chinese-speaking driver and quality, air-conditioned vehicle
1 night accommodation in the monastery
All admission fees and activity expenses, as noted in the itinerary
All meals as noted in the itinerary
What's Not Included:
Expenses of a personal nature
Excursions and activities not included in the itinerary
Discretionary gratuities for guides and drivers
Chinese tourist visa, which is required for most foreign passport holders
Travel, health and trip cancellation insurance
We offer our itineraries as suggestions only; all of our tours can be tailored to your individual interests. The above prices may change based on any specific requirements you may have. The extended trip is available upon request.
Prepayment is necessary so we can book your flights/train tickets/car transportation and guides.
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