Grand Mosque of Shadian in Gejiu City, Yunnan, China is one of the largest mosques in China. The mosque can hold 10,000 people for prayers. It is patterned after the Nabawi Mosque in Medina, Saudi Arabia.
One of the things I enjoy about traveling is the exploring local areas and finding interesting sites that were not what drew you to an area. All the photos are by me during my visit in 2013 (see more photos by John Hunter).
The Mosque of Shadian was established here during the Ming Dynasty (1488-1505). According to the plaque it has remained in service since, though with several destructions of the buildings. The version of the mosque seen in the photos was completed in 2010.
When traveling in China I used personal guides for most of my time (other than time traveling on my own in Shanghai and Hong Kong). China is not a very easy place to travel, especially if you don’t speak and read Chinese. So I just decided to take the easy way out.
I don’t like being stuck with large group tours. You waste lots of time waiting around and can’t adapt to what you find very well, if at all. This mosque wasn’t on our plan but the guide figured out what I liked and we took a slight detour to find this.
It isn’t cheap to hire a private guide and driver but it is what I chose to spend money on in those fairly rare instances that I take it on. It is possible to travel in China yourself, of course. But I have traveled all over and it is the most challenging place to travel I can recall.
If I couldn’t have afforded the private guides I would have just joined a group tour that had a schedule with time for you to explore on your own.