Yungang Grottoes

Yungang Grottoes, Datong
Yungang Grottoes Pictures
Yungang Grottoes, one of the three major cave clusters in China, punctuate the north cliff of Wuzhou Mountain, Datong. The area was excavated along the mountain, extending 1 km (0.62 miles) from east to west, revealing 53 caves and over 51,000 stone statues.

The grottoes are divided into east, middle, and west parts. Pagodas dominate the eastern parts; west caves are small and mid-sized with niches. Caves in the middle are made up of front and back chambers with Buddha statues in the center. Embossing covers walls and ceilings.

Started in 450, the grottoes is a relic of the Northern Wei Dynasty (386-534). Absorbing Indian Gandhara Buddhist art, the sculptures here developed traditional Chinese art melded with social features of the time.

During the reign of Emperor Xiao Wen a monk named Tanyao took charge of the construction of Yungang Grottoes. The largest cave is No.6, which is 20 meters (65.6 foot) high, standing a 15-meter (49.2-foot)-high pagoda-like column decorated with Buddha statues and designs. On the four sides of the tower pillar, and on the east, south and west walls of the cave, 33 embossed panels depict the story of Saykamuni.
Yungang Grottoes, Datong Yungang Grottoes, Datong
Caves worth special attention are No.16, 17, 18, 19, and 20. Upon Tan Yao's suggestion, five statues of Emperors Taizu, Taizong, Shizu, Gaozong, and Gaozu as Buddha express the religious theme that the Emperor is Buddha. Caves housing these statues are known as the Five Tan Yao Caves, similar in style but not identical. The statue in Cave 20 is martial and stately, No.19 handsome and elegant, while No.18 is dignified but lively. Their similarity lies in their thick lips, big noses, slanted eyes and broad shoulders depicting the ethnic culture of the time.

Yungang Grottoes graphically tell the story of past glory.
Yungang Grottoes, Datong Yungang Grottoes, Datong
Admission Fee: April - October: CNY 120
November - March: CNY 100
Free for children under 1.2m (3.9ft).
Opening Hours: April - October: 8:30 - 17:30
November - March: 8:30 - 17:00
The exhibition hall: 9:30 - 16:30
Time for a Visit:
Two hours
Bus Route: Take bus No. 4 at Datong Railway Station and get off at Xin Kai Li. Then transfer to bus No. 3-1 to Yungang Grottoes. 
There are other bus routes but it is advisable to take taxi or hire a van from downtown Datong to the Grottoes directly. The cost should be about CNY50.
- Last updated on Apr. 13, 2021 -
Questions & Answers on Yungang Grottoes
Asked by stefano from ITALY | Apr. 11, 2024 09:18Reply
hey if I'm entering at the grottes at 16.30....con I stay inside and visit for a coupple of hours?
Answers (1)
Answered by Joshua | Apr. 11, 2024 23:16

I'm afraid you can't. Normally the staff will clear up the site before the close time.
Asked by Jurek from LESOTHO | Nov. 12, 2019 12:12Reply
What time is the laser show at the caves?
no more questions
Answers (1)
Answered by Gutek from ZIMBABWE | Nov. 12, 2019 12:13

As far as i know.there is only singing every Wednesday
Asked by Luisina from ARGENTINA | May. 12, 2019 08:47Reply
Hi ! I will be arriving at Datong Railway Station around 4 am.
Taxis are available at that time to go to city center?
How can we go from Hanging Monastery to Yungang Grottoes?
Answers (1)
Answered by Nelly from SINGAPORE | May. 13, 2019 18:33

Yes, the taxis are available. From Hanging Monastery to Yungang Grottoes, you can take take a taxi to Hunyuan Bus Station and then take a bus back to Datong Bus Station. The bus departs from 7:15 to 16:55 with an interval about 30 mins and costs about CNY10. After that, take bus line 24 from the bus station to Heping Street and then transfer to Bus Line 12 to Yungang.
Asked by Inka from GERMANY | Oct. 03, 2018 05:33Reply
Do you happen to know if it is possible to store luggage at the Yungang grottoes?
If not: we will be arriving at the airport in the morning and leave via night train. Where would you recommend that we store our luggage? Thank you for your answer in advance.
Answers (1)
Answered by Rena from USA | Oct. 10, 2018 00:30

Yes, there is free checkroom in the scenic area and you can find it on the north to the first floor of the tourists service center.
Asked by Monika from POLAND | Jul. 23, 2018 03:40Reply
Hi! We will arrive at Datong Airport at 8am.
And I would like to hire a car to the hanging monastery and grottoes and be back in the train station by 3.30pm - is it doable? And also, is it possible to hire a car at the airport or it will be more expensive than f eg looking for a car by the train station..?
Answers (2)
Answered by Hailie from USA | Jul. 23, 2018 19:29

Yes, it is available. You can bargain with the driver and the fare is about CNY 350.
Answered by Monika from POLAND | Jul. 24, 2018 00:51

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