Experiences - Asia

Must – Visit in China – Mogao Caves

The Mogao Caves are a system of Buddhist cave temples near the city of Dunhuang in Gansu province. They were a centre of culture on the Silk Road from the 4th to the 14th centuries and contain a religious artworks spanning that entire period.

Mogao Caves

Image Courtesy: intothegreen used under the Creative Commons Licence

There are about 600 surviving cave temples, of which 30 are open to the public. They are also known as Mogao Grottoes, Caves of the Thousand Buddha’s, or Caves of Dunhuang.

Mogao Caves are the perfect combination of architecture, statues and murals, and are particularly known to the world for their colourful murals. The cave decoration is very detailed and covers each of the square walls within the caves.

The caves currently house art, scriptures, cave sanctuaries, hundreds of statues, more than 50,000 manuscripts and artefacts. However, one of the most stunning views is given by the enormous wall frescoes that cover more than 450,000 sq. ft. Most of the wall-paintings cover religion and mythology scenes related to Buddha or fairy tales while other murals bring out spirits, animals, buildings or social life of those times.

Must - visit in China - Mogao Caves
Image Courtesy: Xuan Che used under the Creative Commons Licence

Mogao Caves are an amazing tourist attraction of great religious, cultural and historical significance. Photography is not allowed inside the caves, but some nice books are available at the museum on site which beautifully illustrates the history of the scared caves.

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