Yangshuo- The Limestone Paradise of China
Landscape between Guilin and Yangshuo, on the pearl river (Li river)
Due to its massive Karst landscape, Yangshuo is often refereed as the Limestone Paradise of China. It is a small and picturesque county situated in south China, 800 km north-west of Hong Kong. Yangshuo lies adjacent to the main transport hub of Guilin in Guangxi. The county is famous for its limestone backdrop, lofty and pictorial mountains, caves, temples, gushing rivers, laid back bars and cafes.
Yangshuo does not have the metropolis or a big-city feel unlike other Chinese cities, and is more like a holiday spot. With exotic restaurants and shops developed to the perfection of mainland Chinese yardstick, it bears the status of a “foreigner’s village” in Southern China. It is a favourite tourist destination of several backpackers. Yangshuo offers a unique opportunity to discover the local countryside on a bike or simply enjoy the adventure sport of rock-climbing on the Karat landscape, here.
The chief tourism locale in Yangshuo is designed and styled like a ladder. The two chief traveller streets run analogous from the river towards the end of Yangshuo’s larger avenues. Several assorted smaller streets cross between the two larger boulevards make it appear like the rungs of the ladder. While, the road on the left as glimpsed from the River is West Street, it is an older and highly recognized tourist lane, and hence the epicentre of tourist activities. Diecuilu is yet another long and well-known tourist alley.
Typical scenery in Yangshuo.
A petite creek runs down the centre of the ladder, and hosts a few of the attractive restaurants bars in the county. The street is called Guiha Lu and has of late withstood massive reconstruction. Hence, you can shop, eat and drink at several new shops, restaurants and bars, here. Approaching the river’s end, it curves intersect at Diecielu.
At the end of the river, i.e. near the foot of the ladder, several hawkers and vendors will be actively selling souvenirs and other collectibles that are either available at shops or at the handcarts within the main town. You can even spend your time at the fantabulous hotels build on the banks of the river.
The main street called Pantao Rd with numerous hotels is built across the top of the ladder. Yangshuo’s chief bus station is built at intersection of Die Cui Lu street. This area bhustles and bustles at night with numerous eateries serving hundreds of diners. Be prepared to gorge scrumptious Chinese food.
A small bamboo boat on the Li River, in Yangshuo.
I personally spent some of the greatest time in my life in Yangshuo, just riding a bike around the villages, meeting Chinese people and enjoying the landscape. That is the main attraction of Yangshuo: Karst landscape surrounding the place. The countryside is dotted with several hundreds of limestone hills known as Karst. The picturesque views offer a common subject to Chinese painters and heavily inspire the poets as well. In order to explore the different regions of this scenic place, you can choose a combination of bamboo-raft cruises, trekking, river cruises and cycling.
Yangdi-Xingping is a breath-taking view of a stretch along the Li River. You can discover its beauty by hiring a modern-day raft constructed from plastic pipe and two stroke motor. Although the rafts are secure yet life jackets are offered as well. Furthermore, you can hike along the Li River for a distance of 24km in 6 hours.
Yulong River valley is a mesmerising opponent to the Yangdi-Xingping stretch. Two popular methods of absorbing the brilliant splendour of the valley include river rafting on bamboo rafts and cycling along the riverside tracks. You journey will reveal several farming villages and stone bridges like Fuli Qiao and Yulong Qiao.
Harvesting of tea around Yangshuo.
Moon Hill is a famous scenic destination that lies towards the southern side of Yangshuo. The uniqueness of the hill is the massive hole resembling the shape of the moon. For more spectacular views you must trek uphill. Although the trek is short, yet the slope and the steep angle makes it funny on your legs when you climb down the hill.
Things To Do:
In addition to sight-seeing you can enjoy fishing and lazing in the park during your vacation at Yangshuo.
Local tourism firms provide boat trips in the evening to see fisherman employing an age-old technique for fishing during the pitch darkness of the night. The technique involves the services of a cormorant (hog). It is quite special and you should try to see it if you can.
Relax in the People’s Park and watch the locals play cards, groups of women basking in the park while knitting, and children playing around. The park is opposite the main bus station of Yangshuo.
This post is also available in: French