小寨天坑

Xiaozhai Tiankeng


Useful Information

photography
World's deepest sinkhole Xiaozhai tiankeng with tourist trail visible. Public Domain.
Location: Tiankeng Difeng National Park, Chongqing Municipality, Fengjie County.
Open: no restrictions.
[2020]
Fee: free.
[2020]
Classification: KarstTiankeng
Light: n/a
Dimension: Upper sinkhole: L=626m, W=537m, VR=320m.
Lower Sinkhole: L=268m, W=257m, VR=342m.
Total: VR=511-662m, Ar=274,000m², V=119,349,000m³.
Cave: L=8,500m, VR=364m.
Guided tours: St=2,800.
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no, too many stairs
Bibliography:
Address: Xiaozhai Tiankeng, Tel: +86-, Fax: +86-,
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.

History

1994 discovered by British cavers during China Caves Project expedition.

Description

小寨天坑 (Xiaozhai Tiankeng) is the deepest sinkhole of the world. Actually it is two sinkholes in one, an upper, wider sinkhole, a sloping ledge, and another sinkhole in the middle of the bigger.

The Xiaozhai Tiankeng was well known to local people since ancient times. There once was a small village close to the doline which is now abandoned. Its name is Xiaozhai (little village). From the village a trail leads two the rim and down into the sinkhole. It was constructed to allow tourism, but the 2,800-step staircase is not for the faint hearted.

Some pages state that Xiaozhai is also called Heavenly Pit. That's actually wrong, all the huge sinkholes here are called Tiankeng which means Heavenly Pit. In other words, Xiaozhai Tiankeng translates Xiaozhai Heavenly Pit.