My China Tour

Longmen Grottoes

The Longmen Grottoes, located in the Dragon Gate of Luoyang in He’nan Province, is 12 kilometers apart from the urban district, cutting from Northern Wei Dynasty, it has 2,345 grottoes and over 10,000 statues with 1,500 years history, the best of which were done in Northern Wei and Tang Dynasties. It together with Mogao Grottoes in Dunhuang and Yungang Grottoes in Datong has composed three famous rock caves art treasure.

Longmen Grottoes
Longmen Grottoes

Guyang Cave contains the richest numbers of statues and niches with more than 2800 inscriptions of the engravers, surpassing all other grottoes in number. The most precious are "Twenty Articles of Longmen", which were regarded as the best calligraphy finished in Wei tablet style.

There is a cave called: Cave of Prescriptions. Over 140 prescriptions of Chinese medicine are carved on tablets, including internal medicine, surgical and other prescriptions containing more than 40 diseases. They were brought to Japan and they were called Longmen Prescriptions in Japan.

Bingyang Cave is in Northern Wei style. It contains 11 Buddhist statues, which took 24 years to finish. It was the most splendid and magnificent of caves of Northern Wei, and some of the statues are in kind of Western Region style.

“Ten-Thousand-Buddha Cave”, located in the south of Bingyang Cave, is a typical cave in Tang Dynasty. Many caves at that time were built at imperial orders, so an "imperial style" is the outstanding feature of Longmen Grottoes. It enshrines Amitabha. Empress Wu Zetian ordered the engravers to build 15,000 Buddhist statues. Many little statues give the cave an impact of the power of Buddha. They show the religious theme of Buddhist adherents' piety and symbolize the theme that "the emperor is the Buddha", and there are arhats in the cave, each of them has different facial expressions of happiness, anger, joy and sadness of the earthly world. As history goes on, Longmen Grottoes is still impressive. Their colorful content reflects the development and changes in ancient China's politics, economy, religion and culture in different aspects. It has dedicated greatly to the development of Chinese cave art.

Best Time to Longmen Grottoes

With a climate that summer is hot and winter is cold, its annual average temperature is 15ºC, and the best time to visit it is in Autumn. It is open time is from 7 a.m. and 6 p.m. with an entrance fee 120 yuan one person.

Transportation to Longmen Grottoes

You can take NO.81 bus to get there directly within in 40 minutes from railway station, and from every part of the city you can take a bus to get there for the advanced bus service system. You can also get to Shaolin Temple from there.

Eating & Accommodation

The most famous dining there is the Water Banquet of Luoyang, the main course is soup, one after another just like water, of course, you can choose delicious snacks to enjoy yourself in the street, the hotels with high standards around Longmen are rather expensive, but you can also find some that can be discounted, there are many specialties and craftsmanship there: embroideries and Dukang wine, you can also buy some small Buddhist statues as souvenirs.

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