Earth : Asia : East Asia : China : South-central China : Chongqing : Dazu
Dazu (大足市) is a city in Chongqing Municipality, China. The city is famous for the Dazu Rock Carvings (大足石刻), located in forty locations in Dazu county（大足县). They date from the 7th to the 13th century and are listed as an UNESCO World Heritage site.
Dazu city is located two hours west of Chongqing City and four hours south-east of Chengdu and can be reached via the bus station in either city. The fare is ¥54 from the Caiyuan Ba (菜园坝) bus station and ¥52.5 from the Chen Jiaping bus station in Chongqing,there are more buses from Caiyauan Ba. In Dazu city there are two bus stations with buses to many of the sites.
Within Dazu city transportation options include taxis, motorcycle taxis, pedal-taxis and three wheeled vehicles called sanlunche (三轮车). Taxis fares start at ¥3 and motorcycles, pedal rickshaw and sanlunche can ferry you around the city for ¥5-10.
There are two bus stations located in Dazu, the main long-distance bus station on Nanhuan Road (南还路）and the bus station at 15 Longzhong Road (龙中路）that services the local area, including the rock carvings. Moreover, when arrive the main long-distance bus station cross the road in front of the station take the bus number 101 (¥1)get of at bus stop before intersection to Dazu mountain (see the sign or ask the chauffeur), catch the bus at the corner intersection to Dazu (¥3).
Numerous travel agencies in Dazu, Chongqing and Chengdu offer tours to the carvings that will take the hassel out of travel, but at a cost.
The main rock carvings can easily be visited as a day trip from Dazu. The caves are open from 8:00 a.m.-6 p.m. The cost of a ticket to Treasured Summit Hill is ¥120 and tickets to Beishan are ¥90, but a combined ticket for entrance to both sites can be purchased at either site for ¥170.
Dazu city is an average Chinese city of several hundred thousand people and there isn't much to see or do within the a city besides going there to view the famous rock carvings.
One interesting option would be to bike around the verdant farm lands around the city. No rentals are available so bring your own bike. The route to the most impressive carvings located at Baodingshan (宝顶山) is rather scenic and could offer a potential biking destination. It does however require biking up several long steep stretches and Chinese drivers are notoriously dangerous. Wear bright colors and leave early if you choose this option!
Several internet bars are located in Dazu, including on Longzhong Road near Dazu Binguan and Jinyuan Luguan.
There are plenty of opportunities to buy trinkets within Dazu city and at many of the cave sites. One local specialty to look for is purple stone jadite, which is carved into a variety of trinkets, from pendants for ¥10 to large statues running into the thousands of yuan.
There are numerous restaurants located within the city. The buffet breakfasts at Dazu Bingguan are a good deal at ¥15. Dazu is located in China's spice bowl and famous spicy hotpot is widely available for those who wish to test their intestinal fortitude.
A minimarket is located next to the Longzhong Road bus station and every block has a couple of stores selling food.
Cold beer is plentiful in restaurants throughout Dazu and water and soft drinks are readily available at the rock carving sites. Anything near the site will be price inflated as expected.
Numerous hotels are located in Dazu City and around Baodingshan, though not all will accept foreigners.
The bus station on Nanhuan Road (南环路）has several buses a day to Chongqing and Chengdu. Buses to Chengdu leave at 7:50 a.m, 8:50 a.m, 9:50 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. Tickets are ¥66 and the trip takes 4 and a half hours. Buses to Chongqing (Chenjiaping station) leave on continuous basis throughout the day. Tickets are ¥52,50 and the trip takes more than 2 hours.
There is also another bus station on a side street off Longzhong Lu (near the bridge) which has buses to Zigong and to Baodingshan. Buses to Baodingshan depart every 30 minutes between 8 a.m. and 12 noon.