The caves homes of Guyaju, China


The caves homes of Guyaju (Guyaju meaning, ancient cliff dwelling) are about 90km northwest of Beijing, China. They were occupied during China's Tang Dynasty (AD 618-907) by the Xiyi people. There are over 100 homes carved in to the hillside. The homes, some with stylish pillars of stone, are arranged in two village clusters supplied with fresh water from a natural spring. When they were occupied the homes would have had a timber frame façade with thatch roofs.


The cave part of the homes vary in size from a tiny 4m2 to a still small 20m2 (43-215 ft2). Some homes are connected perpendicularly while others connect horizontally with narrow corridors and stone ladders. These weren't primitive homes. Some show the remains of heated living rooms and beds known as kang, a central heating system that dates back in China and Korea as far as 5,000 BC. Millions of people still live happily in cave homes all over the world.