Jiuxiang Scenic Area

Jiuxiang Scenic Area in Kunming, also called the Museum of Karst Caves, is a cluster of hundreds of karst caves, forming the largest such complex in China. It is about 40 kilometers (25 miles) from the Stone Forest. Jiuxiang Scenic Area and Stone Forest are both karst landscapes. There is a saying that “in Kunming, people can appreciate the stone forest above the ground and karst caves underground”.

Located in the Yi and Hui Autonomous Township of Yiliang, the Jiuxiang Scenic Area not only has beautiful landscapes but also displays the custom and culture of the Yi and Hui minorities. Here, you can appreciate lush forests, narrow canyons and underground caves. The Myth, a film starring Jackie Chan, took this special landscape as a backdrop. The main scenic spots of the Jiuxiang Scenic Area are Green Shady Valley, Grand Underground Valley, Grand Lion Hall, Twin Waterfalls, Fairy Fields and Bat Cave.
Map of Jiuxiang Scenic Area
Map of Jiuxiang Scenic Area
After going through the entrance of Jiuxiang Scenic Area, you take a sightseeing elevator with a fall of 53 meters (174 feet) down to Green Shady Valley. The valley is 1,000 meters (1,090 yards) long with the Maitian River flowing through. Green Shady Valley, also known as Lover Valley, used to be the place where boys and girls sang love songs to each other. Taking a boat through the narrow gorge, you can appreciate differently shaped limestone formations covered with lush plants on both sides of the river.

At the end of the boat trip, you can walk along the path through the Grand Underground Valley in Jiuxiang Scenic Area. The underground valley passes through steep cliffs which seem to have been sliced apart. Compared with Green Shady Valley, the river here flows faster because of the narrower width. You should watch your step!
Jiuxiang Scenic Area
Green Shady Valley
Jiuxiang Scenic Area
Grand Lion Hall
Passing through the Grand Underground Valley, brings you to Grand Lion Hall, an underground oval hall with a pitched vault. It is named after a group of stalagmites shaped like a lion near the south exit of the hall. The top of the broad hall is a huge rock seemingly without any support. A centrally located exhibition displays some special stones and ethnic handicrafts.

Close to Grand Lion Hall is Fairy Palace of Jiuxiang Scenic Area. Different-shaped stalactites and stalagmites, highlighted with colored lights, are bright and mysterious. On crossing Diehong Bridge, you enter Lying Dragon Cave. Two huge waterfalls, called Twin Waterfalls, with a drop of 30 meters (98 feet), pour over the cliffs in the cave into a 10-meter (32-foot) deep pool, making a deafening sound.
Jiuxiang Scenic Area
Twin Waterfalls
Jiuxiang Scenic Area
Fairy Field

Continuing on, you can see Fairy Field, off to one side of the path. Layers of stalagmites, highlighted with colored lights, look like terraced fields. There is a huge conical stalactite shaped like a grain of cereal, bathed in a gold-yellow light.

Jiuxiang Scenic Area
Jiuxiang Scenic Area
Then, you can go to Yi Minority Village where young people perform traditional minority dances for you.

The next spot to visit is Bat Cave, also known as Underground Downturned Stone Forest. It used to have many bats living there, but now there only remains a stone ‘forest’ hanging upside down from the top of the cave. The stone forest is characterized by its great and irregular inclination.

At the end of the path, there is a chairlift station. You can choose to take the chairlift for 10 minutes, walk for about 25 minutes, or ride a horse to get to the exit of the Jiuxiang Scenic Area.


It is suggested you wear sports shoes for the paths in Jiuxiang Scenic Area are damp and slippery, and uneven.

How to Get to Jiuxiang Scenic Area

From Kunming to Yiliang
Take a middle bus in East Bus Passenger Station of Kunming to Shuanglu Hotel of Yiliang County.

From Yiliang to Jiuxiang Scenic Area
Take bus no.21 in the Yiliang Bus Passenger Station to Jiuxiang Scenic Area. Remember not to get off at Jiuxiang Town, where the bus stops on the way. The journey takes over one hour.

After visiting Jiuxiang Scenic Area, you can go to the Stone Forest. Take Jiuxiang - Yiliang bus no.21 to get back to Yiliang Bus Passenger Station. Then, take a bus to the Stone Forest. The whole journey takes one and forty minutes.
Entrance Fee CNY 60 per person, includes boat ticket and tour guide fee
Free of charge for children below 1.3 meters (4.2 feet)

Chairlift: CNY 30
Opening Hours 09:00-18:00

Further Reading: Top 10 Things to Do in Kunming
- Last updated on May. 30, 2023 -
Questions & Answers on Jiuxiang Scenic Area
Asked by Thai tourists from THAILAND | May. 28, 2023 03:41Reply
Traveling from Jinjiang hotel railway station to the stone forest and Jiuxiang cave
If going to the stone forest and Jiuxiang cave by train or bus in one day, can you give the recommendation how we can manage it?
Answers (2)
Answered by Lisa | May. 29, 2023 19:25

Since you are very closed to Kunming Railway Station, you can take a bullet train to Shilin West directly, with a duration of 40 min. Upon arrival, take bus line 99 for about 1 hour to Shilin Scenic Area. Generally, there are some private cars operating between Shilin and Jiuxiang, and it takes about CNY 80-100 for a 40-min single journey.
Answered by Thai tourists | May. 30, 2023 18:31

Thanks for your recommendation 🙂
Asked by Evald from USA | Apr. 15, 2021 21:36Reply
Private Car Service
Do you know of a private car service that will pick up at Kunming downtown and do a round trip to Jiuxiang and Stone Forest and back to Kunming? Is that too rushed for one day? Or is it best to stay in the area?
Answers (2)
Answered by Gaia | Apr. 18, 2021 19:29

Yes, as I know, there are several private car that provide this service. Generally speaking, one day is enough.
Answered by Evald | Apr. 18, 2021 21:49

Thanks Gaia
Asked by June from SG | Jan. 14, 2020 23:51Reply
Any direct buses shuttling between Shilin stone forest and Jiuxiang?
Answers (1)
Answered by Astrid from GERMANY | Jan. 15, 2020 23:34

Yes, there are. As I know, you can see several shuttle buses at the entrance of the scenic area.
Asked by Elaine from SINGAPORE | Dec. 08, 2019 02:54Reply
Staying near the airport or staying near to the East bus station ?
Which location has easy access to food while staying overnight for a day or two?
Answers (1)
Answered by Elva from USA | Dec. 10, 2019 19:11

It is suggested to live near East Bus Station.
Asked by Lee Chiang Kiat from SINGAPORE | Oct. 13, 2019 03:36Reply
Transport from hotel near Changshui Airport to Jiuxiang Scienic areas
I am staying at a hotel near Changshui Airport. How many type of transport can I take to Jiuxiang, and what is the price ?
Answers (1)
Answered by Elva from AUSTRALIA | Oct. 15, 2019 19:14

You can take metro line 6 to East Coach station with CNY5, then take direct bus from there to Jiuxiang station with CNY20. Next, there is tourist bus you can take to the scenic area.
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