Why Visit Hongya Cave?

Located at the bank of the Yuzhong Peninsula, along the Yangtze River, Hongya Cave is regarded as a living fossil of Chongqing culture for its long history of more than 2,300 years. Hongya Cave, covering an area of 46,000 square meters, is an 11-storey, 75-meter stilt building butting up against a steep cliff, reflecting Bayu traditional architecture style.

By nightfall the gorgeous light shines on the buildings, tourists will marvel at the grandeur of the Hongya Cave night view. It is topping the list of trendy internet-famous destinations!

With a favorable location and well-developed transportation, other famous tourist attractions are nearby such as Jiefangbei and Chaotianmen. It’s convenient to get around these scenic spots together.

Hongya Cave Panorama View of Hongya Cave

History of Hongya Cave

Historically, Chongqing has experienced four large-scale fortifications: the first in 314 BC during the Qin Dynasty, the second in 226 during the Three Kingdoms period, the third in 1249 during the Southern Song Dynasty, and the forth in 1371 during the Ming Dynasty. Gradually, 17 city gates were built and Hongya Cave was one of them. Since the 1940s, the Hongya Cave began to have a series of stilted houses. After planning and construction by the government, old stilted buildings were demolished and rebuilt. Thus, Hongya Cave presents to the world with a new face.

Some tourists would be confused after visiting Hongya Cave because they don’t see any “cave” in this scenic spot. Is Hongya Cave really a “cave”? Strictly speaking, Hongya Cave is not a “cave” but a closed city gate which is mainly used for military defense. Now it has totally been transformed into a tourist area for sightseeing and leisure. In addition to cultural and historical sites, there are also various shops spreading over 11 floors.

Hongya Cave Hongya Cave at Present

Hongya Cave Highlights

Stilted House

Stilted houses are special architectures with Bayu style, reflecting the perseverance of the ancient people. They are built according to terrain, scattering randomly. This type of architecture takes advantage of the firm bearing force of cliffs to support the whole building, which saves building materials and improves stability. Also, it can cover up some cliffs, having aesthetic and protective effects. The lower part of the stilted house is empty, and the upper part is solid. The wooden dwellings manifest Chinese national wisdom and creativity. This complex of stilted houses can be said to be a unique wonder in the world.


Water flows down from the mountains covered by forests, forming a waterfall when it is rainy. With diminished rainfall, water droplets drip down, always reflecting the bright sunlight. The green color of the water is as deep as that of the jade, hence the name “Hongyadicui”. (cui means jade in Chinese) At the front gate of Hongya Cave are steps leading up to the waterfall. These stairways are filled with locks and ribbons bearing wishes and good fortune. Tourists can place their wishes and blessings on the stairways through locks or ribbon.

Urban Balcony

Standing at Urban Balcony, tourists can command a fine view of two rivers (Jialing River and Yangtze River) converging. It’s also a great place to have a panoramic view of the new CBD in Chongqing.

In the middle of Urban Balcony Square stands a sculpture group. The theme sculpture is Memory of Mountain City created by Guoxuanchang. It is forged from brass, transforming the traditional stilted house into an exaggerated form but still remain authentic. This giant brass sculpture is about 13 meters high and 8 meters wide, just like a mountain towering towards the sky. In a word, Urban Balcony is a perfect lookout point.

Local Snacks

Gourmet Street is a paradise of dainty snacks, serving many traditional snacks that are mostly spicy and hot, like Hot and Sour Rice Noodles. You can find different restaurants on the 4th, 9th and 10th floors on Hongya Cave. In Chongqing, the most famous food is hot pot, also known as tripe hot pot or spicy hot pot. No visit to Chongqing is complete without sampling the local hotpot. Raw materials are mainly cow stomach, pig artery, duck intestine, blood and so on. There are also regular materials like beef rolls, mutton rolls, meatballs etc. for your option. After enjoying the fabulous scenery, we encourage tourists to taste this essential food.

Hongya Cave Stilted House
Hongya Cave Hongyadicui
Hongya Cave Memory of Moutain of City
Hongya Cave Chongqing Hotpot

Suggested Itinerary of Hongya Cave

After arriving at the 11th floor of Hongya Cave, tourists will admire the attractive sculptures on Urban Balcony.

Going down to the 10th and the 9th floor, distinctive coffee shops, snack bars and art shops are open, which are full of Bayu style.

The 5th to the 8th floors are mainly hotels, tourists can just pass over.

Stepping into the 4th floor, Hongyadicui is waiting for tourist exploring. Walking through the Gourmet Street, you will taste authentic Chinese food and local delicacies.

On the 1st to 3rd floors, there are some exquisite handiwork and antiques. Finally, tourists get to 1st floor that is a good place to take a close-up. Then, tourists are more suggested to take an elevator at basement level 1 instead of the 1st floor back to the 11th floor because there will be less crowded. Walking from the 11th floor to the Qiansimen Bridge, tourists will have a panoramic view of Hongya Cave. Cross the bridge and heading to the Grand Theater, tourist can snap an amazing nighttime cityscape view.

Tourist are also recommended to enjoy night views by taking the cruise ships to explore the Yangtze and Jialing rivers around the Yuzhong Peninsula. The cruises run from 7:30 pm to 10 pm, with each tour lasting about 45 minutes. Some ships also provide dinner and special cabins. Our itineraries are customizable, we will have a tailor-made tour for you if you need!

Location & Transportation of Hongya Cave

Hongya Cave is situated in Yuzhong District, Chongqing, which is the convergence zone of the Jialing River and Yangtze River. The Grand Theater and Hongya Cave face each other across the river. It takes about 20 minutes to walk from Hongya Cave to the Grand Theater, covering a distance of 1.2 km. Jiefangbei is just on the south of Hongya Cave, tourists can walk there for 10 minutes.

Since Chongqing is a modern city and one of the largest municipalities of China, there is a wide variety of transportation to choose from. Bus, taxi, subway, and rail transit are all available. To avoid traffic jam, Rail Transit is a better option. Tourists can take Rail Transit Line 1, Line 5, Line 6, Line 10, etc.

From Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport, you are recommended to take Rail Transit Line 10 and then transfer to Line 6. (25km/about 1 hour)

From Chongqing Train Station, you can take Rail Transit Line 1. (5km/about 0.5 hours)

From Chongqing North Train Station, you can take Rail Transit Line 10 and then transfer to Line 6. (8.5km/ about 0.5 hours)

From Chongqing West Train Station, you can catch Rail Transit Line 5 and then transfer to Line 1. (18.5km/about 1 hour)

However, there is no direct rail transit to Hongya Cave, tourists need to walk extra distance. There are two subway stations near Hongya Cave. Xiaoshizi station(小什字站) and Jianglinmen station (江临门站) both are 779 meters away from Hongya Cave, costing about 12 minutes waking to the 11th floor of Hongya Cave.

Chongqing is known as a mountain city with complex traffic system. Tourists often spend lots of time finding the right way. If you need local private transfer service, please feel free to contact us!

Hongya Cave Attractions Map Click to Enlarge Hongya Cave Attractions Map

Hongya Cave Travel Tips

1.Best Time to Visit Hongya Cave

Chongqing has a subtropical monsoon climate, and it’s very hot here in summer for its mountainous terrain. Spring, autumn and winter are all suitable for tourists to check in at this new landmark of Chongqing. But comparing with summer and winter, spring and autumn are not that hot and dry like summer, not that cold and foggy like winter. So, spring and autumn are more proper to appreciate the view of Chongqing. Between 19:30 to 23:00, Hongya Cave will be illuminated, making it the ideal time to snap photos of the magnificent buildings. (Please note that lightening time may change with seasons.)

Hongya Cave is a popular tourist spot, especially during the holidays, to be more specific, May Day holiday, Dragon Boat Festival holiday and National Day holiday. Though admission is free, it limits passenger volume. Tourists may be unable to gain entrance to the site. It would be better to stagger the Minor vacation to avoid the crowds. Even in normal day, there’s still a lot of tourists around. It would be better to make reservations in advance especially on holidays. To know more about China holidays, China holidays travel tips 2024 may help a lot!

Hongya Cave Night View Of Hongya Cave

2.Best Positions to Take Photos of Hongya Cave

Many photography enthusiasts visit Hongya Cave in an endless stream, capturing beautiful moments and creating photos albums to remember the experience. Where is the best place to record the beautiful scene? Three positions are recommended for your reference.

On the side of Qiansimen Bridge, Tourists can take pictures of the overall view of Hongya Cave.

Standing at the first floor of Hongya Cave, tourists can take a close-up. Going to the Grand Theater, Qiansimen Bridge and Hongya Cave can both be included in your picture.

What are you waiting for? Take your camera, go to enjoy the beauty of Hongya Cave and discover the spectacle Bayu culture!

Please note if tourists want to walk from Hongya Cave to Qiansimen Bridge, they need to set off from the 11th floor of Hongya Cave.

Hongya Cave Best Positions to Take Photos of Hongya Cave

3.Accommodation at Hongya Cave

Since the majority of tourists choose visit Hongya Cave at night, most of them will stay overnight nearby. Hongya Cave, situating on the central urban area of Chongqing, provides a wide range of hotels for tourists. Five-star hotels, economic hotels, youth hotels are all available for choice. River-view room will definitely give you a special experience.

It should be noted that not all hotels are qualified to receive foreigners. Therefore, it is better to check with hotel in advance.

How to Plan a Chongqing Trip with Hongya Cave

In Chongqing, it is recommended to visit Hongya Cave in the evening to see the beautiful night scenery, which resembles Spirited Away movie. Chongqing is called “the most hospitable city in China” by many netizens. Plenty of tourists would spare 3 days to explore the captivating city. Check the following plan to see how to experience the charm of Chongqing!

Day 1-you will learn about the Three Gorges and Yangtze River after visiting the Three Gorges Museum. After lunch, you will roam in E’ling Park to enjoy life at a leisurely pace. If you are interested in Chinese history, you can go to Jiefangbei during the rest afternoon. By nightfall, Hongya Cave will offer you magnificent nighttime landscapes and Lumia art.

Day 2- Wulong Karst boasts massive natural sceneries where tourists can immerse in this area all day. You will first appreciate the Three Natural Bridges, experiencing the uncanny workmanship of nature. Heading to your next stop- Longshuixia Gap, you will feel the power and perseverance of the earth.

Day 3- Dazu Rock Carvings is also a must-see attraction in Chongqing. Reputed as “the pearls of the oriental art”, Dazu Rock Carvings will leave an indelible impression on you with its religious sculptures and carvings. Before lunch, you can tour Baodingshan Rock Carvings to indulge yourself in invaluable Buddhist art. After lunch, you won’t miss Beishan Rock Carvings which houses over 5,000 statues.

Recommended Chongqing Tour Packages:

2 Days Chongqing & Wulong Karst Landscape Exploration Tour

4 Days Chongqing Essence Tour with Yangtze Cruise

5 Days Chongqing, Yangtze Cruise & Wulong Karst Tour

How to Plan China Yangtze Cruise Tour

Situated on the upper portion of the Yangtze River, Chongqing is always regarded as the start or end destination of the Yangtze River Cruise tour. Taking a cruise ship is the best way to enjoy the scenery along the river. Don’t know how to arrange a day-by-day itinerary along the way? You can take a look at following tours. If you want tailor-made Yangtze River Cruise tour, please feel free to contact us.

5 Days Relaxing Yangtze River Cruise Tour (Yichang - Chongqing)

7 Days Yangtze & Zhangjiajie Tour

Our Guests Take a Photo with Hongya Cave Our Guests Take a Photo with Hongya Cave
Chaotianmen dock Chaotianmen Dock
three-gorges Relaxing Yangtze River Cruise

Travel Hongya Cave with China Discovery

As Chongqing has a complex terrain with mountains surrounding it, it is easy for tourists to travel the wrong road. It is highly recommended to find a reliable travel agency to help with the transfer and tour. If you want to free yourself from troublesome trifles and experience the Bayu culture in depth, we strongly recommend considering our worry-free tour packages .If you book a private tour package with us, the sightseeing, dining, accommodation and transfer will all be covered. Our local tour guide and driver will escort you to the main scenic spots with speed and convenience, and take care of all the details. You just need to focus on sightseeing!

Recommended Chongqing Tours

Top 3 Chongqing tours chosen by most customers to explore Chongqing in the best way. Check the detailed itinerary, or tailor your own trip now with us.

Peter's Family enjoyed a leisure break on Yangtze River Cruises

4 Days Chongqing Essence Tour with Yangtze River Cruise

Chongqing / Yangtze Cruise / Yichang

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2 Days Chongqing & Wulong Karst Landscape Exploration Tour

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5 Days Chongqing, Yangtze Cruise & Wulong Karst Tour

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Start planning your tailor-made holiday to China by contacting one of our specialists. Once inquired, you’ll get a response within 0.5~23.5 hours.

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