Southern China is home to the world's largest karst, a three-dimensional rock landscape usually made from carbon deposits. The South China Karst covers nearly 232,000 square miles (600,000 square kilometers) and slopes from high-altitude plateaus in the northwest to low-lying plains in the southeast.
The eight areas that make up the South China Karst encompass a variety of unique natural forms, including tower karsts, cone karsts, pinnacle karsts, and rare giant karst pits.
The region's carbon deposits are thousands of meters thick and were created during the late Paleozoic era, which spanned 542 million to 251 million years ago. Fossils found in the karst have offered important information about Earth's past.