Every child growing up in China knows Monkey King, and not surprisingly, so do many people from all over the world. What you may not know is the connection between Monkey King and the Big Wild Goose Pagoda in Xi’an. Construction of the pagoda was suggested by none other than Master Xuanzang whose adventures were captured in the classic Chinese novel Journey to the West. The story describes how Master Xuanzang traveled to India to learn Buddhism and it was on this journey he found three disciples, one of whom was Monkey King. Master Xuanzang also returned from these travels with over 600 Buddhist scriptures which he diligently translated. These Buddhist scriptures and treasures were stored in none other than the Big Wild Goose Pagoda with construction commencing in 652AD. And while earthquakes, groundwater, and age have contributed to a definite lean that is apparent in the pagoda, it continues to be a Xi’an must-see highlight (even though it’s undergone reconstruction several times since). Whether you visit by day or night, Big Wild Goose Pagoda will definitely be a highlight on any Xi’an city tour.
Update: July 29, 2021