The Rock Painting of the Mountain Huashan

The Rock Painting of the Mountain Huashan, widely known as Huashan Rock Paintings, comprises a cliff painting complex along the Zuojiang River in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. Acclaimed as an artistic treasure of China, it was listed as a World Heritage Site in 2016. The best example of the Rock Paintings of Hua Mountain is located in Ningming County, Chongzuo City, where the rock paintings are the largest and of the most complicated patterns.

Huashan Mountain stands around 890 feet (271 meters) high on the west bank of Mingjiang River. Facing the river is a precipitous cliff with dark red patterns. Paintings cover an area of over two acres (8,000 square meters), with a length of 564 feet (172 m) and a width of 164 feet (50 m).

1,951 images have been counted which can be categorized into 110 groups. Most are patterns of human beings, animals and utensils. Human figures are in various postures. Each man in the middle of a group bears a sword and wears a zoomorphic ornament on the head, looking like the chief of a tribe. Some surrounding figures are doing fork dances barefooted like a hopping frog, raising their hands over head and bending their knees. Others are riding horses, beating drums, or playing gongs. Some profile figures half kneel and raise hands together over head, as if they are presenting something to the chief. It's inferred that they are the lower levels and women. Identifiable animals include dogs, donkeys, wolves, tigers, and birds. It's easy to tell that the cliff paintings show a magnificent ceremony.

Neither the dance movements nor the drawing of figures are elaborate. However, Huashan Murals as a whole are imposing, showing the brilliant culture of Zhuang Nationality. Therefore, Huashan Rock Paintings are of great historical and artistic value.

Unsolved Mysteries

It is recorded that the masterpieces were painted over 2,000 years ago by the Luoyue Tribe, ancestors of Zhuang People. The earliest ones can be dated back to the Spring and Autumn Period (770 - 476BC).

However, the Rock Painting of the Mountain Huashan remains an unsolved mystery. How did the ancient people paint on such a steep cliff? What kind of pigment did they use so that the paintings are still clear and bright after thousands of years of weathering? And, why did they paint and what exactly do the paintings imply?

Opinions vary on the last question about the content of the paintings. Some assume that people in the paintings are celebrating a bumper harvest while some think they are celebrating victory over invading enemies. Some experts reckon that Luoyue People drew pictures on the cliff to frighten demons in the river, thus praying for favorable weather for the crops. Some guess they are showing awe and respect to a frog totem. Others believe it is just the witchcraft of Luoyue People.

How to get there

 From Nanning City to Ningming
1. Take a regular bus at Nanning Jiangnan Bus Station or Nanning Langdong Bus Station, which costs about CNY 65. (Click to see long distance bus stations in Nanning.)
2. Take a train from Nanning Railway Station to Ningming. Two trains are available: one departs at 07:55 and the other 18:05. It takes three to four hours.

 From Chongzuo City to Ningming
1. Take a bus from Chongzuo International Passenger Transport Center. The buses are available between 07:20 and 17:40. Bus fare is around CNY 23.
2. Take a train to Ningming. It only takes about an hour to get there.

After arrival in Ningming, take a local pedicab to Tuolongqiao Dock, which is near the Railway Station. The price is about CNY 5. It takes around twenty minutes to the dock. Then take a ship at the dock and you will arrive at Huashan within two hours. The official ship departs at 10:00 and 14:00. If you cannot make it, private ships are available, and you can bargain with the boatmen. The price is between CNY 50 and 60, just for your reference.
Admission Fee CNY 80 (including the entrance ticket and ship ticket)
Children between 3.9 and 4.6 feet (1.2 and 1.4m) enjoy half price and those below 3.9 feet can visit around for free.
Opening Hours May to October: 09:00-17:00
November to April: 09:00-16:00
- Last modified on Jul. 17, 2019 -
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