Yulin Caves or Yulin Grottos is situated 70km south of Guazhou County, 110km from Dunhuang downtown. The exactly earliest date to build Yulin Caves is uncertain. However, it is concluded it might be constructed as early as Northern Wei Dynasty(386AD-543AD) from the construction style and fresco characteristics.
The caves in Yulin were built on bank cliffs at two sides of the Yulin River valley. There are now 42 major caves in existence together with hundreds of others scattered around, 31 on the east bank and 11 on the west bank. The first group of caves was built in the Northern Wei dynasty and in the following dynasties more caves were cut or restored. The forms of caves and contents of paintings show close connection with those in the Mogao Grottoes so they are important constitute parts of Dunhuang art complex, and have great historical and art value. The grottoes preserve nearly one thousand statues and more than one thousand-square-meters frescoes.
Yulin Caves share the similar art and construction styles with Mogao Caves, hence it belongs the Mogao historical system.
There are regular caves and special caves for visiting Yulin Caves.