Mt. Xumi Grottoes

Mt. Xumi Grottoes Mt. Xumi Grottoes

Mt.Xumi Grottoes is one of top ten grottoes in China and one of key cultural relics under national protection. The grottoes are located on the northern slope of the mountain about 55 kilometers northwest of Guyuan County, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region. The grotto began its construction around the time of the Northern Wei Dynasty (368-534) and was completed in the Sui (581-618) and Tang (618-907) dynasties. The Buddhist statues, which were made with an artistic approach of realism, reflect the true features of people in the Northern and Southern Dynasties (420-581), the Sui and Tang dynasties.

There are more than 150 grottoes on Mt. Xumi, which are scattered in eight peaks stretching about 2 kilometers. Grottoes built in Northern Wei Dynasty are represented by Grotto No 14, 24, 32 and 33.They were built normally in central pagoda style with a width of 3-4.5 meters. Grotto No.45 and 46 boast most magnificent caves on Mt. Xumi, while the biggest cave is Grotto No.51. 

The most celebrated place of interest in the mountain is the Giant Sitting-Buddha Maitreya in Grotto No 2. The Maitreya measures 26 meters in height, with its ears the length of two adults put together. The Maitreya has a benign look. It is considered a masterpiece of the grotto in the mountain. Grotto No 5 is the biggest of its kind in the mountain. Made of a mound hollowed out, it is called the “Haloes of Xumi”.

The grotto consists of seven well-preserved Buddhist statues, each six meters tall, and seven Bodhisattva statues. These sculptures look mysterious and fascinating under a few rays of light that enter the grotto through a hold in the mound. Subjected to devastation by earthquakes and windstorms in its 1,400 year history, half of the grotto was caved-in, but it has recently been restored.

Location: Northern Slope, Shimenshui, 55 kilometers northwest of Guyuan County, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region
Entrance fee: RMB 50
Transportation: Take long-distance buses from Guyuang County to Sanying Town.And take another bus to Mt. Xumi in the north of the town.

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