The mosque, also known as the temple of worship, is a central place for Muslims to hold worship and religious studies, and to hold religious education and missionary activities. Today, mosques in different forms can be seen in many places in different parts of China. It is said that the earliest mosque was built in the Tang dynasty. As the development and spread of Islam, the mosques gradually increased. China's first mosque was the Great Mosque in Xi 'an, built in the Tang dynasty in the 8th century.
Islam is against the worship of idols, hence, inside the mosques, you can not find any idol pattern composed by human and animal form. The mosques are mostly decorated with abstract designs which are combined by Arabic, geometric patterns and flowers paintings.
China's mosques have two types. One is the palace mosques which have the traditional Chinese architectural style. These mosques use Siheyun type; a central axis throughout the beginning and end; there is ridge roof in the worship hall; the hall has three kinds of shapes including Tu-shaped, I shaped, rectangle, etc... The gates of these mosques are similar with the gates of China's temples; this is the product of the combination with Chinese culture.
Another kind is Arabia type mosques, the outward appearance is dome architecture; on the top of the hall, there are four semicircle green dome and a bending silvery white crescent. But Xinjiang's mosques' halls commonly has flattop and are decorated with wood, brick and stone, having Xinjiang style.
Niujie Mosque (Beijing): the largest and oldest mosque in Beijing; one of the world famous mosques; the important place for the reception of international Muslim friends, and the international friendly exchanges.
There are 70 mosques in Beijing, mainly including the Niujie mosque, Dongsi mosque, the flower market mosque, the Mardian mosque, the Tongzhou mosque, the Changying mosque and so on.
Kowloon Mosque and Islamic Centre, the biggest Islamic mosque building in Hong Kong and it is located in Tsim Sha Tsui where there are a lot of people from Muslim countries. It covers an area of more than 1500 square meters and is a three-storey building. The building was designed by an architect I.M. Kadri. It can accommodate about 3,000 people at one time.
There are 5 mosques in Hong Kong, mainly including the Kowloon mosque, the Qiqun road mosque, Jamia Mosque and so on.
There are 24,100 mosques in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, mainly including the Id Kah Mosque in kashgar, the Todaiji mosque in Turpan, and the Shaanxi Grand mosque in Urumqi.
Great Mosque (Xi'an): one of the oldest and most renowned mosques in China; the major spot for the religious activities of over 60,000 Moslems in Xian; also an important historical monument in Shaanxi Province.
There are 105 mosques in Shaanxi province, including the Great mosque at Huajue Lane in Xi’an, the mosque at Daxuexi Lane in Xi 'an, and the mosque of Xi 'an Xiaopi courtyard.
Dongguan Mosque (Xining) : one of the largest mosques in northwest China with a history more than 600 years; serves as an educational center and institution of higher learning for Islamism, and also is the leading mosque in Qinghai.
In Qinghai province, there are 1,327 mosques, 4 Gongbeis and Daotangs, which mainly includes Dongguan mosque, Hongshuiquan mosque, Al-hetan mosque and Mengda mosque etc.
Huaisheng Mosque (Guangzhou): one of the four big ancient China Islamic mosques; also the existing China oldest mosque architecture.
There are 9 mosques and 3 worshippers in Guangdong province, including Huaisheng mosque in Guangzhou, East mosque in Zhaoqing and mosque in Shenzhen.
There are 7 mosques in Shanghai, including Songjiang mosque, Xiaotaoyuan mosque and Huxi mosque.
Nanguan Mosque (Yinchuan): one of the largest mosques in Ningxia for visitors to learn the local Muslim culture; one of the most significant Yinchuan attractions; has been visited by a few dignitaries coming from all over the world.
There are 4203 mosques, 102 Gongbei and Daotangs in Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region which mainly include Great Mosque in Tongxin and the Great Mosque in Najiahu.
Chongshan Mosque (Guilin): located in the west side of the southern end of Chongshan Road. It was built in the late Qing dynasty and the first year of Emperor Qianlong. It covers an area of 1218 square meters.
There are 21 mosques in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, including Nanning mosque, Guilin Chongshan mosque, Guilin Ancient Mosque, Liuzhou mosque and Baise mosque.
The Great Mosque (Taipei): the first mosque in Taiwan. It is located at 62 South Xinsheng Road, Taipei, covering an area of more than 1000 square meters, the construction area is about 2,747 square meters.
There are 6 mosques in Taiwan, including Taibei Grand mosque, Kaohsiung mosque and Longgang mosque.
There are 5 mosques in Zhejiang province and 6 worshippers, including Hangzhou Phoenix mosque, Jiaxing mosque and Ningbo mosque.
Xianhe Mosque (Yangzhou):one of the four big ancient China Islamic mosques; it still preserves Islamic culture relics of Song, Yuan, Ming, Qing dynasties; it mixes together the characteristics of Islamic architecture and ancient Chinese architecture style.
There are 54 mosques in Jiangsu province, mainly including Nanjing Jingjue mosque, Yangzhou Xianhe temple, Zhenjiang Ancient mosque and so on.
According to the statistics of 2014, there are 39,135 mosques, including 39,019 mosques, and 106 Zawiyah and 10 Gongbei. Beside the mosques listed above, there are much more mosques in other provinces in China.
Along the silk road, there are 4606 mosques in Gansu province, mainly including Lanzhou Xiguan mosque, Tianshui Houjie mosque, Lintan South mosque and Linxia Nanguan mosque.
There are 929 mosques in Henan province, including Zhuxian town North mosque, Qinyang North mosque, Zhengzhou North mosque and so on.
There are 867 mosques in Yunnan province, mainly including the Nancheng mosque in Kunming, the Najiaying mosque, Wenshan mosque, Zhaotong Baxian temple and so on.
There are 4 mosques in Tibet Autonomous Region, mainly including Lhasa Great Mosque, Shigatse mosque, Changdu mosque and so on.
You can also find numerous mosques in the below provinces or in municipalities directly under the central government: 418 mosques in Hebei province, 416 mosques in Shandong province, 285 mosques in Anhui province, 190 mosques in Guizhou province, 176 mosques in the Inner Monggol Autonomous Region, 125 mosques in Liaoning province, 120 mosques in Sichuan province, 114 mosques in Heilongjiang province, 106 mosques in Shanxi province, 84 mosques in Jilin province, 66 mosques in Hubei province, 60 mosques in Hunan province, 57 mosques in Tianjin city, 8 mosques in Chongqing city, 6 mosques in Hainan province, 5 mosques in both Fujian and Jiangxi provinces.