The Great Mosque is located in Huajue Lane, which branches off from the West Main Street. It is the major spot for the religious activities of over 60,000 Moslems in Xi'an. It is also an important historical monument in Shaanxi Province. Unlike Arabian mosques with splendid domes, skyward minarets, and dazzling patterns, this mosque possesses much Chinese tradition in both design and artistic outlook. It assumes the striking features of Chinese Pavilions, with painted beams and engraved ridgepoles.
The Great Mosque is the most sizable of its kind in the city of Xi'an, and also one of the oldest and best-preserved mosques in China. The Stone Tablet on the Building of the Mosque says that it was built in the Tang Dynasty. However, judging from its architectural style, it was probably built in the Ming Dynasty. Its four courtyards cover an area of more than 12,000 square meters, with a building area of 4,000 square meters. The still intact wooden memorial arch in the front yard was built at the turn of the 17th century. With glazed tiles, spectacular corners, and upturned eaves, it stands about nine meters high, and has a history of about 360 years.