China renovates oldest Taoist temple

( Xinhua )

Updated: 2013-11-14

TAIYUAN, Nov. 12 (Xinhua) -- A 1,170-year-old Taoist temple in north China's Shanxi Province is being refurbished, local authorities said Tuesday.

The wood-structure Guangrenwang Temple in Ruicheng County is the country's oldest Taoist temple dating back to the Tang Dynasty (618 to 907).

Jing Hongbo, a local official of cultural heritage in Ruicheng, said the temple was in a poor condition, with cracks in its walls and damage to other areas.

The State Administration of Cultural Heritage has earmarked about 2 million yuan (about 328,000 U.S. dollars) for the renovation.

"We repaired the temple in 1958, when we had to alter its rafters and walls, and it lost some of its Tang flavor," Jing said. "This time, we'll try to restore it to its original style."

The temple covers an area of 4,560 square meters. It is on the country's state protection list for cultural heritage.

The renovation will be completed in May.