Guilin and Yangshuo – all the green you can have! (Part 2).

Day 3
The last (full) day we decided to dedicate to the famous rice terrace.
We booked the tour via the guesthouse again, and we set out at around 8:30 am and after 1 hour driving we suddenly stopped.

Inside the park

Inside the park

After a short chitchat with the driver we arrived to a small mini tour which is supposed to show us the different cultures and way of living of ancient Chinese people.

In fact it was a big waste of time – at least for us – especially since we waited for around 30 min until our guide arrived with another bus.
This place is very beautiful but you can see that besides the lake (maybe) the place is very fake – from the buildings to the shows.
The long haired girls in action

The long haired girls in action

You see the long haired girls brushing their long hair, and people hitting drums and a girl singing, that’s it.

After this, the guide tried to convince us to try the ‘traditional zip line’, seriously? Traditional zip line??
After this 1.5 hours delay we finally set out to what we hoped will be the promising part of the day (and the trip).
The road to the rice terrace was amazing – green all around, big mountains waterfalls (look carefully) and a lot of villagers and their herds.
Once we got to the rice terrace it was crowded as expected but still worth it, definitely worth it.
Working the fields

Working the fields

Green terraces everywhere in different shade, old and beautiful houses, people working their fields and magnificent mountains as far as your eye can reach.

Once you get there, you can go have lunch if you haven’t eaten – but the food is so so, I recommend either eating in advance or skipping this lunch and settle for snacks you can buy in the village.

Don’t waste your time buying things, the sellers will still be there later on and you have many stairs to climb!
Head up the mountain for about 20-35 minutes (depending on your shape) and touch the flag at the peak.
From the top (almost)

From the top (almost)

You can take marvelous pictures from up top, but if you ask me, the really beautiful pictures you can take on your way down – you’ll see a lot of spots you missed when you climbed (because you didn’t exercise and because you didn’t look back;) ).

Buy yourself a cold bottle of coke and start your way down – it’ll take about 30 – 45 minutes all the way to the parking lot, but enjoy the view and the nice breeze (which will take care of the sweat you piled on your way up).
Once we finished the rice terrace we started heading back to Guilin, but ‘luckily’ for us there was a crazy traffic jam, so after discussing with the driver we set out on a different route – which turned out to be just as bad! The reason it takes so long is that the road is very narrow and there are a lot of busses and trucks going up and down on those tight curves.
The point is – take a book! Or a lonely planet, study your next destination.
From the village we headed back to Guilin directly with the bus and got dropped at the guest house, and then we wrapped it up with a short trip to have dinner at the nearby pedestrian street.
We didn’t eat in a restaurant – we preferred trying some street food.
As mentioned in the first part of this post – there are a lot of tasty things to eat there, so we tried some more chicken on a stick and tasty skewers, a good and light ending for a long day.


Beautiful rice terrace - amazing usage of the land by the locals!

Beautiful rice terrace – amazing usage of the land by the locals!


Day 4

The famous elephant in action

The famous elephant in action

The last day we did not have much time on our hands as our flight back to Beijing was at noon (12:00), so we woke up early and headed to the famous ‘Elephant Trunk park’.
To tell you it’s special and the elephant trunk was amazing? I cannot. But I can say that the park is really nice – one of the nicest parks I’ve seen in China.
You will see a lot of elderly doing sport, green all around and cool statues wherever you look.
As a cool bonus you have this big rock that resembles an elephant trunk, and that’s about it with regards to the elephant trunk – don’t keep your hopes high.

Statues inside the park

Statues inside the park

If you will go all the way around the park you can go stand right by the trunk in a man-made cave, pretty cool.

After finishing the park we headed back to the guesthouse to take our stuff and went straight to the airport.
Note that the taxi back to the airport is fixed priced (as far as I understood) so you might as well get the taxi booked via the guesthouse – it will be the same price and more convenient – assuming you chose taxi as your way of transportation.

That’s about it, after Guilin we came back to Beijing and had only our memory (and pictures) to ponder upon.
I can warmly recommend going to Guilin and Yangshuo – there is much more to do than we did, depending on the duration and age.
There is a cool rafting, mountain climbing, rappelling and you can do plenty of tracks in the rice terrace area (between the villages, 2-3 days and more).

So go out and explore! because you live only once.
Have a good one.

Some pictures I took during the trip:

Adam Disatnik

I have been living in China since early 2013 in the great Beijing. I try to travel as much as I can and try to understand the culture and the habits as much as possible. It's amazing how much can be learned about China, and about life, while living abroad in a totally different country than the one you grew up in. I love it! Catch up on my blog to try and understand along with me:) Adam.

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