Helan Mountain, or Helan Shan is an natural barrier extending for 250km from north to south, which divides Inner Mongolia and Ningxia. The west slopes of Helan Shan are gentle and smooth, connecting Alashan Plateau while the east slopes are rugged and steep, overlooking at Yinchuan Plain.
On the over-30 passes in the east slopes of Helan Shan and the wild grasslands on the alluvial fan, exist some 6,000 images and graphs, pictographs of rock carvings. The rock engravings at Helan Shan mainly depict animals, plants, hunting scenes, faces and figures. They are the last remnants of the nomadic tribes living on the steppes.
The rock carvings at Helan Mountain date back to some 10,000 years, predating any dynasties that once appeared in the area. The Helan Shan rock art belongs to China north rock art system with various animal images – domestic animals: cattle, horse, donkey, camel and wild animals: tiger, wolf, leopard. Sheep is widely used in the Helan Shan including bharal, antelopes and sheep.
The rock carvings in one pass or valley in the east slope of Helan Mountain is selected and built into a rock art park known as “Rock Art of Helan Mountain “贺兰山岩画” open to the public, one of the most magnificent sights in Ningxia. The Rock Art Park is located about 56 km to the northwest of Yinchun city proper.
There is no direct bus service between the rock art park and the city of Yinchuan. You may take the public bus No.17 from Yinchuan Railway Station to China West Film Studio (RMB 5) where you hire a taxi to the rock art park (RMB 100); or you may hire a taxi to visit both China West Film Studio and Helan Shan Rock Art Park (RMB 200-300); or you may hire a taxi to visit the three sites – West Xia Imperial Tombs, China West Film Studio and Helan Shan Rock Art Park (300-400RMB).
Entrance fee: RMB 70 ( including the entry to World Rock Art Museum and a gold-car to the valley holding the rock carvings.
Enquiry: 0951 – 6010049
Now follow me to have a glimpse of the impressive rock art of Helan Shan on your Ningxia tour.
The rock park is located on the east foot of Helan Shan. The wide entrance leads first to Yinchuan World Rock Art Museum
Yinchuan World Rock Art Museum displays the exhibits and pictures of the rock carvings from all over the world. Rock art are images or graphs carved or painted on rocks left by our primitive people. It is a world cultural phenomenon.
You need to take an electric car going from the rock art museum to the site of the valley holding the rock carvings. The ticket for the electric car service is included in your entrance fee for the rock art mseum.
The rock art museum is the only rock art themed museum in the world. Various kinds of rock art forms are distributed in 70 countries and 150 regions.
the only rock art themed museum in the world.
You need to take an electric car going from the rock art museum to the site of the valley.
Along the foot of the valley is carved with numerous images and graphs carved by the nomadic tribes 6,000 years back. A wooden path winds along the edge of the valley.
Viewing the rock art at the valley.
More rock engravings at the valley.
Stroll along the boardwalks around the edges of the valley for more rock carvings. Basically it takes 2-3 hours to cover the major sites of rock carvings.
Tip: Hassle-free Yinchuan Guided Tours
If you don’t want to go the do-it-yourself route and prefer the hassle-free escorted tours, here are some options for Yinchuan Guided Tours: