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Huaisheng Mosque, Guangzhou

(4.3/5 based on 60+ reviews on the web)
The Huaisheng Mosque, also known as the Lighthouse Mosque, is the main mosque of Guangzhou. Rebuilt many times over its history, it is traditionally thought to have been originally built over 1,300 years ago, which would make it one of the oldest mosques in the world. It was named in memory of the Islamic prophet Muhammad.The most unusual (in the Chinese context) feature of the mosque is its "calling tower" (minaret). The round tower is 36 meters tall with a pointed tip. The minaret may have served as a beacon for boats, which may explain its name (Guangta, i.e. literally "Tower of Light"). Guangta may also be translated as "Smooth Tower", referring to the unadorned surface of the minaret. From the tower, the mosque itself got its alternative name (Guangta Si, i.e. literally either "Smooth Tower Mosque" or "Lighthouse Mosque"). Somewhat similar "minimalist" minarets can be seen outside of China, e.g. at the Khan's Mosque in Kasimov, Russia.The other name, Huaisheng Mosque (Huaisheng Si), means "Cherishing the Sacred" or "Cherishing the Sage", presumably referring to Muhammad. This name has been Romanized in various ways, such as Hwai Sun Su Mosque, Huai-Sheng Mosque, Huai-Shang Mosque, and Huai-Shang Si Mosque. The mosque is also referred to as the Great Mosque of Canton, and as Ying Tong Mosque.HistoryOld Chinese Muslim manuscripts state that the mosque was built in 627AD by Sa`d ibn Abi Waqqas who was an uncle of Muhammad, and supposedly came on his first Muslim mission to China in the 620s. Although modern secular scholars don't find any historical evidence that Sa`d ibn Abi Waqqas actually visited China, they agree that the first Muslims must have arrived to China within the 7th century, and that the major trade centers, such as Guangzhou, Quanzhou, and Yangzhou probably already had their first mosques built during the Tang Dynasty, even though no reliable sources attesting to their actual existence has been found so far.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • I know this mosque is very important because it is the oldest in China but as a non-Muslim it is not welcoming. Churches allow visitors to enter but this mosque is not open for non-muslims. You can se...  more »
  • Peaceful place, happy to see Muslim from all over the world gather here even though we don't understand the kutbah which is in Chinese language... halal food everywhere Nice Chinese architecture  more »
  • The oldest mosque in Guangzhou...there is a decent hotel Jia Mei Hotel adjacent to this Mosque and next to the Jia Mei Hotel is a halal restaurant, Abi Waqqas Restaurant, located at Guanta Lu (Road) w...  more »
Google
  • I have been hear soo nice
  • Very well maintained. Love the architecture.
  • very neat clean well maintained and quite place for doing prayers.. MasyaAllah I am soooo happy its just 50m from the hotel i stay in guangzhou.. thank you Allah for giving me ease in doing my work and prayers..all praises to Allah..
  • I visit this place twice in a year and every time feel relaxed by offering prayers specially on friday.
  • Great place of safety and tranquility.