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White Crane Ridge

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Located on Yangtze River in the north of Fuling District, Chongqing, White Crane Ridge is a 1,600 meters (1,749.8 yards) long and 15 meters (16.4 yards) wide natural stone ridge. When it came to the low water period of Yangtze River between December and March of the next year, the ridge would appear out of the water. Therefore,  the ridge was a hydrometric station recording the water level of middle and upper reach of Yangtze River since the Tang Dynasty (618 - 907). Since the completion of Three Gorge Project would lead to the rise of water level and the ridge would have been submerged, an underwater museum has been constructed to protect it. Now visitors can still see this ancient water station in the White Crane Ridge Underwater Museum.

It is said in the Tang Dynasty a Taoist trained himself on the ridge and left the human world on a white crane after he became an immortal, so the ridge was named White Crane Ridge. Hailed as "the best preserved ancient hydrometric station in the world" by UNESCO, it has recorded Yangtze River's low water records of 72 years among the 1,200 years from 763 to 1963. 174 inscriptions have been discovered on the stone ridge, including twelve carved fish, one carved portrait of Guanyin Bodhisattva, one carved white crane, and 108 passages.

The historical records on White Crane Ridge are of great value to the research on Yangtze River. The highest water level of Three Gorges Reservoir, 175 meters (574 feet), comes out on the basis of the flood records on White Crane Ridge. Meanwhile, the inscriptions on the stone ridge are considered of high artistic value. The essays and poems were written in different styles of Chinese calligraphy, such as seal (Zhuan), official (Li), cursive (Cao), and regular (Kai), so it is also know as the "Underwater Forest of Steles". 

The underwater museum constructed to protect the stone ridge comprises of an underwater museum, a passageway, an anti-collision mound in water, and an exhibition hall on the bank. Visitors can watch the real-time scene of the ridge taken by underwater cameras in the exhibition hall, or walk through the passageway to the underwater museum to watch it through glass. Professionals can also go under water to have a close touch with the ancient stone ridge. 

 Travel Tips for Visiting White Crane Ridge: 
CNY 50 (Nov. to the next Apr.)
CNY 60 (May to Oct.)
By Bus: visitors can take a bus from Chongqing Chaotianmen Long-distance Bus Station to Fuling Bus Station, and take a taxi to the White Crane Ridge Underwater Museum.
By Ship: take a sightseeing ship from Chongqing Chaotianmen Ferry Terminal to Fuling Ferry Terminal, and walk to the museum (5 minutes).

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