Guanyin Cave – Green Island, Taiwan - Atlas Obscura

Guanyin Cave

Hidden in a cave on a small Taiwanese island, a stalagmite reported to look like the bodhisattva Guanyin. 

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Guanyin, a bodhisattva sometimes called the “Goddess of Mercy,” is revered by Chinese practitioners of Buddhism, Daoism, and folk religion alike as a savior of fishermen and sailors. Appropriate, then, that a small island off the coast of Taiwan would have a pilgrimage site dedicated to her.  

In a sacred cave hidden in the hills of Green Island, the slow process of erosion by dripping water has, over the course of tens of thousands of years, created a stalagmite said by some to resemble the bodhisattva. A minor pilgrimage industry has sprouted, as worshippers come to the cave from across Taiwan to burn incense and give offerings.

Those who step into the cave will see an underground river drifting past. Though there is no temple, a traditional Chinese gate stands outside the entrance of the cave, and a gift shop sells trinkets nearby.

Know Before You Go

The cave is freely accessible. Just remember to be respectful, as it is a place of worship.

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May 1, 2024

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