Dunhuang - featuring Mogao and Dunhuang Caves
Last Update: 17th October 2020
Dunhuang, affiliated to Jiuquan City, Gansu Province, is located at the westernmost end of the Hexi Corridor. It is situated at the intersection of Gansu, Qinghai and Xinjiang. Famous for its Dunhuang Cavess and Dunhuang Frescoes, Dunhuang is an old town on the Silk Road. It offers the world heritage Mogao Caves. Dunhuang is also home to the Han Dynasty Great Wall.
Dunhuang Fast Facts
- Chinese Name: Dunhuang (敦煌)
- Area: 31,200 square kilometers
- Things to do there: Photography, Silk Road History, Adventure
- Who visits: Photographers, Silk Road History and Culture Learners, Adventure Enthusiasts
- Time required: 2 – 3 x days
What to expect in Dunhuang
With a long history, Dunhuang features rich and colorful culture. You could experience it at Mogao Caves originally built in 366, Dunhuang Caves, Dunhuang Frescoes and Yangguang Historical Sites. Since the end primitive society, Dunhuang has been a settlement for human beings.
Thanks to the Silk Road in the ancient times, Dunhuang became the hub for cultural and economical exchange between China and the Western Regions. In ancient times, the Chinese businessmen sold the silk products and pottery there while the Western businessmen sold their unique jewels.
If you are keen on the old history and culture, it is recommended that you explore Mogao Cave, Yumen Pass originally built in 11 BC, Han Dynasty Great Wall, and Yangguang Historical Sites. If you are interested to feel the power of the nature, you could visit Yadan National Geopark where you will find the rock landforms in different shapes, such as castles, sculptures, streets and buildings, Crescent Moon Pool in the Echoing-Sand Mountain, and enjoy sandboarding at the Echoing-Sand Mountain.
If you would like to taste local food and know more about the local life, please visit Dunhuang Night Market. If you are interested to study Dunhuang History, you could explore Dunhuang Research Academy and Dunhuang Museum.
Best time to visit Dunhuang
The best months to visit Dunhuang are from April to October.
How to get to Dunhuang
There are several airplanes to Dunhuang from the main cities around China, such as Lanzhou, Shanghai, Chengdu, Chongqing, and Xi’an. There are many trains to Dunhuang from Chengdu, Chongqing, Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Xining, Zhangye, Lanzhou etc. Please get to Dunhuang by air or by train based on your schedule.
Additional Dunhuang Travel Advice
- From November to April, sometimes sand storms attack Dunhuang.
- In Dunhuang, only a few hotels are qualified to host foreign tourists. Please consult the hotel you are interested to book beforehand.
- Please check out the weather forecast in advance.
- Please wear the sunscreen cream and sun glasses even in winter.
- Please take body lotion, lip balm, and hand cream as it is always dry in Dunhuang.
- As trees are not often seen in Dunhuang, the wind there could be heavy.
- Please take enough warm clothes with you even in summer.