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Overview

The birthplace of Confucius (Kong Zi), Qufu preserves the temples, mansions, and cemeteries related to China's First Sage, many of which are now UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Within the historic walled city section in the heart of Qufu, the Temple of Confucius (Kong Miao) and the Kong Family Mansion (Kong Fu) are the main attractions. The Temple of Confucius, restored many times over the past 2,500 years, is surpassed only by the Forbidden City as China's largest historic complex. With 460 rooms, nine main courtyards, and pavilions housing carved stone tablets, it strongly resembles the Forbidden City. The Kong Family Mansion, headquarters ...

The birthplace of Confucius (Kong Zi), Qufu preserves the temples, mansions, and cemeteries related to China's First Sage, many of which are now UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Within the historic walled city section in the heart of Qufu, the Temple of Confucius (Kong Miao) and the Kong Family Mansion (Kong Fu) are the main attractions. The Temple of Confucius, restored many times over the past 2,500 years, is surpassed only by the Forbidden City as China's largest historic complex. With 460 rooms, nine main courtyards, and pavilions housing carved stone tablets, it strongly resembles the Forbidden City. The Kong Family Mansion, headquarters for more than 70 generations of Confucius descendants who ruled Qufu, is just to the east, and boasts its own nine courtyards as well as 152 buildings with yellow-tiled roofs. A third site of pilgrimage here is the Cemetery of Confucius (Confucius Forest, Kong Lin), a spacious park of 10,000 cypress and pine trees, the tomb of Confucius, and some 100,000 graves of his descendants. These "Three Confucian Sites" are supplemented by other impressive archaeological treasures, including Yan Hui Temple, the Temple of Duke Zhou, and the tombs of the legendary Yellow Emperor, Shaohao, and his son, Shou Qui. West of the walled city is the Muslim quarter with its historic mosque; nearby is the town of Zoucheng, home of Mencius, China's Second Sage.

J.D. Brown
About the Expert

J.D. Brown is a contributor to Frommer's China and Frommer's Beijing, coauthor of Frommer's China: The 50 Most Memorable Trips, Berlitz Shanghai, Berlitz Singapore, and other books.

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Shandong Province, 342 Miles South of Beijing
  • Language: Mandarin
  • Currency: Chinese Yuan
  • Research: Wikitravel | Qufu

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Summer is crowded with tour groups, making early spring and late fall better times to enjoy Qufu's temples and monuments. Winter can be cold, but visitors are few.