Yangguan Pass is located about 70 kilometers southwest of Dunhuang City. It was built in Western Han Dynasty (206BC -24AD) as a frontier defense post and a developed place in China's remote western frontier. It was also an inevitable pass of the Silk Road. Yangguan Pass is one of the representative relics of China Great Wall culture.
HistoryYangguan Pass was first built by the Emperor Wudi during the Western Han Dynasty (206BC -24AD). To resist the harassment of Xiongnu, a nationality lived in the western border of China, the Western Han Dynasty built four countries and two passes in hexi corridor area. Yangguan is one of the two passes, the other is Yumenguan Pass.
In ancient China, Yang meant the south. Yangguan Pass is located to the south of Yumenguan Pass, so got the name.
Yangguan Pass had been an inevitable pass for the Silk Road trade until the Tang Dynasty(618–907). It was once an oasis which provided food and water with soldiers stationed there for living and guard. It welcomed the glorious return of Xuan Zang, the famous Chinese Buddhist monk in the Tang Dynasty, who pilgrimaged to India in search of Buddhist scriptures. Many literati wrote immortal poems about Yangguan Pass. The most famous is Wangwei, a poet in Tang Dynasty. When he set off his best friend here, he wrote a farewell poem: "Please have another cup of wine. You will see no friends west outside of the Yangguan Pass."
In the Song(960–1279) and Ming Dynasties(1368–1644), Yangguan Pass was gradually abandoned because of the decline of the Silk Road. It became a ruined town under the impact of sand and water. No more any walls can be found now. Only a beacon tower was left on the Dundun Mountain.
Yangguan Pass Photo
There is a beacon tower standing on a reddish sandstone hill. The tower is 5 meters high and 8 meters wide. The hill gives a perfect view of the vast area around it.
South to the pass, there is the "Curio Beach". Massive antiques of Han Dynasty have been unearthed, including ancient coins, tiles, weapons, and decorations.
Yangguan Museum was opened in 2003. The exhibits in the museum include ancient artifacts, paintings, and pictures from the Han Dynasty times (206 BC–220 AD). They offer a glimpse of the lost civilization.
There is a village named Nanhu near the Yangguan Pass. The grapes in the village is famous.
- Yangguan Pass Map
- Yangguan Pass Tour
1. There is a big temperature difference between day and night in spring and autumn. It is windy and dusty occasionally. Please bring warm clothes to avoid catching a cold.
2. The sunshine is very strong in summer. You are advised to prepare effective prevent bask in things, such as sunscreen, lip balm, sunglasses, sun umbrellas, caps, etc.
3. It is dry in four seasons. bring more water.