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Dazu Rock Carvings, Chongqing

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Dazu Rock Carvings, Chongqing

(大足石刻景区 dà zú shí kè jǐnɡ qū)

Dazu Rock Carvings was built from 650a in the Tang Dynasty and continued into the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) and the Qing Dynasty (1616-1911). [Photo/IC]

Dazu Rock Carvings refers to all of the 102 cliffside carvings in Dazu district, Chongqing. Construction of those rock carvings date back to 650, and continued into the 17th century. They are outstanding examples of grotto art in the middle and late period of ancient China. The scenic area was added to the World Heritage List in December 1999.

So far, 50,000 statues and 100,000 inscribed Chinese characters have been identified and over 75 cliff statue sites are under state protection. The cliff statues on the North Hill, the South Hill, Baoding Hill, Stone Hill and Stone Gate Hill are large in size, well carved and among the best preserved of their similarities.

An aerial view of the Dazu Rock Carvings Scenic Area in Dazu district, southwest China’s Chongqing [Photo/IC]

The Dazu Rock Carvings have an important position in the history of China's grotto art. They include not only Buddhist figures, but Taoist and Confucian figures. Artisans created these marvelous rock carvings not simply by replicating images that their predecessors had made but by combining religious figures with mundane life, which recorded the transition of society. The statues show the evolution of of carving and national features, breaking new ground in religious art and creating dynamic figures full of life. They stand on the peak of Chinese rock carving art with their historical values and aesthetic quality.

Tourists take photos at a cliff statue site in Dazu Rock Carvings Scenic Area. [Photo/IC]

According to the UNESCO description, the Dazu Rock Carvings are remarkable for their rich diversity of subject matter and the light they shed on daily life in ancient China. Their existence proved the harmonious synthesis of Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism during that period.

Scenic Spot Level: AAAAA (top level)

Address: Beishan Road, Dazu district, Chongqing

Opening Hours: 8:30am-11:00pm

Ticket Price: 140 yuan ($17.37) during peak season (from February 1 to November 30) and 120 yuan during off season

Website: http://www.dzshike.com/dazu//html/1//6/index.html(Chinese)

Notes:

1. The Buddhist statues dominate the total number of rock carvings, but Taoist and Confucian stone figures can also be seen.

2. English guides are available for 260 yuan.

3. Loud noise and improper dress are prohibited in the scenic area.

4. Please smoke only in designated areas.

Last Updated: Dec 17, 2018

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