The Buddha Grottoes
The Buddha Grottoes can be divided into eastern and western parts. There are now altogether 430 statues within 20 Caves (shrines). According to inscriptions: the Western section of the grotto was dug and carved by Yingzhou provincial governor Huang to worship the King in the 23rd year of the Northern Wei Dynasty when the emperor Taihe reigned(499 AD). There are now 9 houses that have been well kept which divides in to upper and lower layers. The still relatively intact caves are the first and sixth Caves. Cave No. 1 is the largest, and three Buddha sculptures are carved on the eastern, northern and western walls respectively. Even after later rehabilitation, their features are hard to identify.
The Buddha and the benefactors carved on the square tower pillar in the center of the grotto are all precious relics of the Northern Wei Dynasty.
The eastern section of the grotto was a private grotto consisting of 7 caves, and was carved by the Khitan envoy jointly with the local troops in the 3rd year of the Northern Wei Dynasty when the emperor Jing Ming reigned.
Buddha grotto is the largest as well as the most ancient in Northeast China. They are of great historical and artistic value. Meanwhile the Buddha Grottoes is an integration of cultural landscape and the natural sceneries.