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Dunhuang Attractions

Locted oppsite Mogao caves, Dunhuang Grotto Art Protection, Examination and Exhibition Center is a two-story low building hidden itself an half in the hill. For a harmony with the cave environment, the building only expose the upper windows and eaves on appearance. The grotto art center covers an area of over 20 thousand square meters and a construction area of over 5,000 square meters. With aid by the Japanese government, the project was started in February 1992, and completed in March 1994.

The grotto art center has a video studio hall and three exhibition areas.  Video studio take a profile record of Dunhuang grotto art and exhibition center by photos for the audience. There Dunhuang grotto art is displayed as the shrine of buddhist art treasures and offers an overview of the essencial development process.     

The first exhibition area houses replica reproduction of the most typical eight original caves. The replication works show Dunhuang Mogao Cave in a-thousand period from 16 Kingdoms to the Yuan Dynasty of China. The outstanding masterpieces of the Cave of each period are the Western Wei Cave 249 and 285, the Sui Dynasty Cave 419, the early Tang Cave 220 , 217 Cave Tang Yuan Dynasty Cave 3 and Anxi Yulin Grottoes Don Cave 25 and more.  

What is the most important, the second area displays the unearthed precious artifacts and relics from the Dunhuang caves.  The relics cover early antique mural duplications, delicate aged silk cloth & fabrics, real ancient buddhist manuscripts, tile brick artworks and the toos for Mogao Grotto creation and Dunhuan mural paintings drawing, which reflects the splendid development history of the Dunhuang Grotto art.     

The third exhibition area on the second floor of the building are used to organize exhibitions and thematic artifacts on display.

Reviews from trip advisor:
Don't miss it!  Well worth an informative visit before or after caves!
Even if you have good books on the caves, this center is a treasure of information, with models, demonstrations and replicas. it is air-conditioned and comfortable. Photos are allowed. It has free hot and cold drinking water available and clean, western restrooms. Allow time before or after your visit to the cave to browse and amplify your experience.

Gem of Silk Road China!
This has to be the star of the silk road journey. We travelled as a group of 14 and we agreed that this was the highlight of the journey.
Unbelievable sights, the many caves, the thousands of paintings, the discovery, the restoration, the preservation, the giant buddhas, the rich history of the travellers and many more.

This has to be one of the Wonders of the World. We had an English speaking local guide and she was really knowledgeable of the history and provided valuable insights of the many stories depicted by the paintings.
We managed to cover only 9 caves out of the hundreds available.
It is good to note that all caves are being protected with locks, cctv, glass panels and security guards.

We were there during off peak season with smaller crowds. Were told that peak seasons are overcrowded and groups have to wait for hours.
We hope this place continue to be well preserved for the future
A must see.