This week we stay in China but move to the Guilin region to visit the Reed Flute Caves, Ludi Yan.
The cave got its name from the verdant reeds growing outside it, with which people make flutes. Inside this water-eroded cave is a spectacular world of various stalactites, stone pillars and rock formations created by carbonate deposition. Illuminated by colored lighting, the fantastic spectacle is found in many variations along this 240-meter-long cave.
The Reed Flute Cave is a natural cave carved out of the karst limestone mountains over millions of years, and has been one of Guilin’s most famous attractions for over 1200 years.
The 240-meter-long cave is lined with interesting rock shapes and formations resembling all kinds of strange things. Many of the formations have taken on recognizable shapes of mythological creatures, or natural images. It is a Chinese habit to give each formation a legendary or poetic name such as Crystal Palace, Dragon Pagoda, Virgin Forest, Flower and Fruit Mountain and other interesting names.
Inside, there are more than 70 inscriptions written in ink, which can be dated back as far as 792 AD in the Tang Dynasty. They are travelogues and poems writing by Tang Dynasty literati who visited the cave. These aged inscriptions tell us that it has been an attraction in Guilin since ancient times. The cave was almost forgotten for a thousand years, before it was rediscovered in the 1940s by a group of refugees fleeing the Japanese troops.
Visit this natural wonder and listen to the legends that were born in it.