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  • Longyou Grottoes
  • Longyou Grottoes
  • Longyou Grottoes
  • Longyou Grottoes
Longyou Grottoes
Name in Chinese :龙游石窟
Opening Hours:8:00-16:30
Admission Fee:CNY 50
Telephone:+86 570 7025769;+86 570 7053567
Address:Xiaonanhai Town, Longyou County, Quzhou, Zhejiang

Introduction

Longyou Grottoes are a series of large artificial caverns located at Xiaonanhai Town, Longyou County, Quzhou, Zhejiang, which are thought to be at least 2,000 years old. The grottoes were originally unveiled to the world after 17 days’ digging by some local villagers in June of 1992. The grottoes are cavernous and richly decorated with carvings, representing one of the largest underground cave systems from ancient times.

Longyou Grottoes Scenic Area has been recognized as a national AAAA level scenic spot and has also been included in the seventh batch of National Key Cultural Relics Preservation Units in May 2013. It’s an historic, marvelous and rare ancient underground world, considered as “the ninth wonder of the ancient world”, almost enjoying the same status as the Egyptian pyramids, the Great Wall and other ancient miracles in the world.  

The grottoes are a combination of civilization, art, culture and engineering technology. The 24 grottoes are carved in sandstone, a homogeneous medium-hard rock occupying a total area of over 0.38 sq km, with the tallest point of the cave exceeding 30 meters, and the overall excavation involved almost a million cubic meters of stone. It is said that the distribution pattern of seven grottoes are similar to the seven stars of the Big Dipper, and often inspire awe in visitors.

Scientists from around the world in the fields of geology, architecture and engineering have conducted over 20 years of research on the Longyou Grottoes but they still have no explanation for the mysteries of these marvelous caverns- why aren’t there any traces of construction left there and no any words recorded or inscribed in the caves? What was the function of these caves? How did the construction workers do their job in the dark?

No one knows the answers and the history of the Longyou Grottoes is an enigma. Only one of the caves has been opened for tourism purposes, which depicts horses, fish and birds.  

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