Binglingsi Grottoes

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The Binglingsi Grottoes are located some 40 km southwest of the Yongjing county seat; they are carved into the steep cliff of Dasigou Gorge in the Lesser Jishi Mountain.

The grottoes manifest profound influence of the Pure Land, Huayan and Zen schools of Buddhism, as well as influence of the Yellow Hat (Gelukpa) and Sakya sects of Tibetan Buddhism.

Listed as a key cultural site under state protection by the State Council in 1961, the Binglingsi Grotto complex consists of an Upper Temple and a Lower Temple, plus others in the gorge between the two. Of the some 200 caves that survive today, 184 are found in the Lower Temple and they housed 776 stone, clay and clay-on-stone sculptures and over 1,000 sq. m of murals. The largest statue is over 27 m tall and the smallest under 20 cm.

Bingling Temple Grottoes, Gansu