Top ChoiceCave in Dunhuang

Mogao Grottoes

Mogao Grottoes

The Mogao Grottoes are considered one of the most important collections of Buddhist art in the world. At its peak during the Tang dynasty (618–907), the site housed 18 monasteries, more than 1400 monks and nuns,...

Top ChoiceOasis in Dunhuang

Singing Sands Dune

Singing Sands Dune

Six kilometres south of Dunhuang at Singing Sands Dune, the desert meets the oasis in most spectacular fashion. From the sheer scale of the dunes, it’s easy to see how Dunhuang gained its moniker ‘Shāzhōu’...

Top ChoiceMuseum in Dunhuang

Dunhuang Museum

On the road to Singing Sands Dune is this sparkling museum that takes you on an artefact-rich journey through the Dunhuang area (from prehistoric to Qing dynasty times) via hallways designed to make you feel as...

Desert in Dunhuang

Yadan National Park

Yadan National Park

The weird, eroded desert landscape of Yadan National Park is 180km northwest of Dunhuang, in the middle of the Gobi Desert’s awesome nothingness. A former lake bed that eroded in spectacular fashion some 12,000...

Historic Site in Dunhuang

Jade Gate Pass

The Jade Gate Pass, 78km west of Dunhuang, was originally a military station. Together with Sun Pass, it formed part of the Han dynasty series of beacon towers that extended to the garrison town of Loulan in...

Historic Site in Dunhuang

Sun Pass

This Han dynasty military post was one of the two most important gates marking the end of the Chinese empire along the ancient Silk Road. Today, a dusty museum chronicles some of the site's artefacts, but the...

Buddhist Site in Dunhuang

Yulin Grottoes

About 180km south of Dunhuang, the 40-plus caves of the Yulin Grottoes face each other across a narrow canyon. The interior art spans a 1500-year period, from the Northern Wei to the Qing dynasty. Many show a...

Buddhist Site in Dunhuang

Western Thousand Buddha Caves

Located 35km west of Dunhuang, there are 16 caves hidden in the cliff face of the Dang River (Dǎng Hé, 党河) gorge, ranging from the Northern Wei to the Tang dynasties. Take an afternoon departure to catch a...