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 The Alu Ancient Cave

The Alu Ancient Cave

Written by Sunny XieUpdated Aug. 14, 2023


The Alu Ancient Cave, reputed as the first wonderful cave in Yunnan Province, features an underground karst cave landscape which looks like an upside down stone forests. It is one of the most magnificent natural caves in Asia.


The Alu Ancient Cave is located within the precincts of Luxi County in Southeast Yunnan, 2.5 kilometers (1.6 miles) from the county seat, and 80 kilometers (50 miles) from the famous Stone Forest and 200 kilometers (124.3 miles) from Kunming, the capital city of Yunnan Province.

The Alu Ancient Cave is actually a large complex of grotesque limestone cave groups, which once served as the settlement for one of the wild tribes. It has been reputed as the number one wonderful cave in Yunnan Province, one of the most magnificent and exquisite natural wonders and the palace of underground stone forest garden. It is composed of nine peaks and eighteen caverns. These caves have many specific and strange characteristics, like spring running out of cave, deep river flowing in the cave, long tunnel zigzagging along the cave, sky seeing through the cave. The Alu Ancient Cave is the main cave of the whole scenery, which consists of Dongyuan Cave, Yuzhu Cave, Biyu Cave and Yuzhu Cave.

With an area of 1.5 square kilometers (0.6 square miles), the Alu Ancient Cave Scenic Spot has opened a three-kilometer (1.7-mile) tour route to the public with three land caves and a water cave, covering Luyuan cave, Jade Pillar Cave and an underground 800-meter-long (2,625 ft) Karst River, Yushun River. In the caves are various stone formations resembling bamboo shoots, flowers, curtains and windows. Remarkably true to life, some stand in solitary loftiness, others in clusters. In Yusun (jade bamboo shoot) River, fish glide among the clearances of surrounding stones.

The Alu Ancient Cave was shaped and developed several hundred million years ago. When the old sea in now Yunnan and Guizhou provinces rose and became the land, the massive calcareous material in the sea turned gradually into limestone. Hundreds of thousands of years witnessed the development of caves of different sizes and the formation of today's marvelous sight.

Travel Essentials

Location: The Ancient Alu Cave is located within the precincts of Luuxi County in Southeast Yunnan, 2.5 kilometers (1.6 miles) from the county seat, 80 kilometers (50 miles) from the famous Stone Forest and 200 kilometers (124.3 miles) from Kunming.

Transportation: There are travel shuttle buses directly accessing to the Ancient Alu Cave Scenic Spot, or travelers can arrive at the Stone Forest first and travel eastwards about 80 kilometers (50 miles) to the gate of the Ancient Alu Cave. It is about 3km from the county to the scenic spot. Taxis are easy to catch.

Open hours: 8:30–18:00

The best time to travel: from March to April and from September to December

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