Renowned Buddhist grottoes offer VR trips

Source:Xinhua Published: 2016/6/28 17:43:24


Dunhuang Caves in northwest China on Friday began offering a different way for people to experience the Buddhist grottoes: a digital world of tourism, high-definition pictures and virtual reality (VR).

The Digital Dunhuang ( offers virtual views of 28 of the Mogao Grotto caves, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and two of the Yulin Grottoes.

The website features photos, video clips, archive materials and a 360-degree view of the millennium-old caves located in the desert of Gansu Province.

Wang Xudong, president of Dunhuang Academy, said they wanted more people to be exposed to the grottoes and to create something that could be used to aid Dunhuang studies in China and beyond.

Facing threats of natural erosion and human-induced damage, the academy began digitalizing its caves in the 1990s and finished filming 120 caves and the 3D restoration of 20 sculptures. Wang said the digitalization benefits both the preservation and exhibition.

"Now we can hold displays of artworks in different places simultaneously," he said.

The academy will add more caves to the website and develop English and Japanese versions.

The Mogao Grottoes feature huge collection of Buddhist artworks -- more than 2,000 colored sculptures and 45,000 square meters of frescoes in 735 caves carved along a cliff by ancient worshippers. It was China's first UNESCO World Heritage Site, inscribed in 1987.

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