The first time I wanted to go to Yangshuo was when I saw a Chinese chapter of “Lonely Planet” in a youth hostel in Shaxi Ancient Town. The book praised the scenery of Yangshuo.

During the May Day holiday in 2022, I finally went to Yangshuo. Many of the itinerary arrangements were temporary, but the right time, place, people and people actually made for an unexpectedly wonderful holiday life.

Every day’s experience was great, so the first half is a daily record to share this wonderful journey. The second half will summarize some experiences for readers who want to travel to Yangshuo, hoping to help you.

Day 1 Dinner at Betty’s house

When we left the Yangshuo High-speed Railway Station, it was still raining lightly and it was a bit cold in spring. Friends from Guangdong opened their suitcases and took out their coats to put on. Take the high-speed rail station bus (¥20) and arrive at Yangshuo Fengming Tourism Distribution Center in more than 1 hour. Pack your luggage and get off the bus, then take a taxi for another 20 minutes to reach Jiuxian Village.

After getting off the car, we were surrounded by green mountains, ducks were playing in the farmland, geese were roaring, farmers were talking to each other from a distance, and drizzle was falling, moistening the air.

Dragging your suitcase and walking a few steps, Betty’s “Old House” B&B is hidden in this rural area of ​​ancient houses, without any violation. The main room of the “old house” is just like my grandma’s house in my memory. It has old wooden doors, high tile roofs, and brick walls. It’s a bit damp and cold. Betty poured me a cup of scented tea and we sat down in the main room.

In the evening Betty had two friends over and we had dinner together. Dinner is divided into meals, a main dish and a bowl of chicken soup with shrimps and pumpkin flowers.

After dinner, we played poker “Fast and Furious” and drank home-brewed plum wine until late at night. I went back to bed first, while Betty had to wait for the next guest who would check in late at night.

Day 2 Baisha Market & Crayfish Party

The market day in Baisha Town is on the last 1/4/7 of each month. This day is May 1st, and I just happened to catch it. The market actually means that nearby villagers bring their agricultural products to the market to buy and sell. Because they usually live far away, they only gather together on market days to form a lively market.

Brown sugar glutinous rice cake is very delicious, fragrant and glutinous, a bit like the taste of fried pumpkin pie. Camellia oleifera is a specialty of Gongcheng. Stew ginger, spices and tea leaves together, filter out the residue, and put it into a boiling kettle. When guests come, grab a handful of fried balls into a bowl, pour the oleifera tea from the kettle, and scoop A little salt, it tastes fragrant, hot and slightly bitter, but the aftertaste is rich and sweet.

Betty bought pumpkin seedlings at the market and took them back to the backyard to pick them. In order to prevent nearby chickens from damaging them, she put up a simple cover with bamboo branches around the melon seedlings.

There are two entrances to the backyard. The first entrance is a flat green brick area for barbecues and a hammock. Pass through a small gate and walk a few steps up the mountain to the second entrance. There is a small vegetable field surrounded by stones, where peppers and pumpkins are planted… Behind the second entrance is a row of bamboos, with several bamboo shoots rising from the bricks.

There will be crayfish for dinner, and in the afternoon Betty will go to her friend Ding Ding’s house to help process the crayfish. Ding Ding’s family also runs a B&B in a very remote location, at the foot of the mountain, and the backyard leads to the mountain.

It started to rain in the afternoon. I took an umbrella and walked along the mountainside. I saw many unique B&Bs along the way, including the “Rose Garden” B&B mentioned in the Guilin chapter of “Lonely Planet”. Walk to the vegetable field and follow the path to a stone-paved staircase. I was pleasantly surprised, the light rain rustled on the umbrella, and the birds were chirping in the forest. Going up the stone steps, there were dense trees on both sides. The branches scratched my waterproof jacket, but still made my pants wet. This mountain road leads to the connection between the two mountains. It seems that there is still a way forward, so I decided to visit again next time.

Change the direction and walk in the fields, surrounded by peaks with karst landforms, farmers’ chickens and dogs, the sound of running water, and thin raindrops. It’s like a paradise.

The long-awaited dinner began, with the fragrant smell of crayfish, cold cucumbers, boiled peanuts, and delicious Liquan beer. After one table finished eating 2 large pots of crayfish, another 2 large pots of crayfish were served. Halfway through the meal, they added noodles and cooked them together. The noodles were soaked with the flavor of the shrimp and were extremely delicious.

Later in the dinner, Betty’s husband Devin came back from out of town and joined us, but he was only vegetarian and ate the garlic-fried celery and fried baby potatoes that Betty prepared for him. The weather was cold, so Tintin’s family prepared a bonfire. The guests gradually gathered around the bonfire. Devin played the guitar (he is a musician in the demo bar), and Betty sang (a professional singer). It was great! Then the guitarist was replaced by Ding Ding’s husband, the guests started singing, and the bonfire was very bright and warm.

Day 3 Rock Climbing & Hiking

In the morning, after eating a big bowl of rice noodles, I went to Baiyan Rock Field to try rock climbing. There are already ready-made hanging points on the rock wall. The coaches climbed up along the hanging points first, hung the fulcrum at the highest point, and hung the rope. The fulcrum is a slide rail structure. One end of the rope is buckled on the climber’s waist, and the other end is buckled on the belayer’s waist. As the climber moves upward, the belayer will tighten the rope to ensure that the climber will not fall even if he misses.

Step on the cracks in the rock wall with the toes of your rock climbing shoes, place your weight on your legs, and support your waist upward. But I was nervous and my arms got sore pretty quickly. Everyone is very powerful, especially girls, who are very smart. Unlike boys who use brute force, girls use more flexible postures. One girl climbed all 5 routes.

The weather was sunny that day, so I met up with my friends in the afternoon to finish hiking the mountain path I discovered yesterday. Going up the stone steps, there were a lot of small branches, but it was obvious that someone had walked on this road. We moved forward, not sure what would greet us ahead. There is a loquat tree on the roadside, pick one to quench your thirst. On the other side of the hillside, the stone steps were replaced by stones, surrounded by orange groves, and the smell of farmyard manure could be smelled in the air. Further down, the road is wide and there are traces of farm tools. Here is a large orchard with oranges, oranges, and mulberries. Further down is the vegetable field. My friend taught me to identify what I am growing.

Soon we entered the quiet village. There was an elder sister who was washing carrots in the pond. She gave us two freshly picked carrots. She washed away the dirt with the pond water and started to chew them. Along the road is the cement road in the countryside, here is Baishabao Village. Going up the cement road, there was another orange orchard. After asking the villagers for directions, we decided to climb over the mountain in front.

The villagers were spraying pesticides, and there was an unpleasant smell of pesticides in the air. We made our way through thick, difficult-to-walk bushes and finally found our way back down the mountain, following the orchards back to the village and back to the stone steps.

After returning to the “Old House” and talking to Betty, I realized that we were taking a hiking route here. We were really lucky.

Day 4 Devil’s Cave

Some of yesterday morning’s rock climbers joined me in today’s technical caving. The tour leader Jerry drove us to Xingping, and we were accompanied by Oula, a Polish rock climber. She spoke Chinese very well and introduced us interesting knowledge about healthy vegetarian food and mushrooms.

Wearing belts, helmets, and search lights, we went up the mountain and entered the cave after obtaining permission from the cave owner. The caves in the scenic area are illuminated by colorful lights. In fact, the caves are white-gray, and they will become gray-black after oxidation. The clean caves are milky white.

Climbing up is not bad, it is much easier than climbing on the rock wall, but I am always a little nervous when descending and often bump into the rock wall. The final exit was so cool, just like the cave exit in the Xbox game Halo series, but this climb was very challenging for me, and I ended up getting stuck in a very difficult place. I knew I was not capable enough, so I cheated and climbed. The rope is out. The exit is halfway up the mountain, which is also an orange orchard. The sun is very good, surrounded by mountains, and there are people paragliding and hot air ballooning in the distance.

The caving process was bumpy and bumpy, and there was rock climbing. I came back exhausted and fell asleep. Jerry posted the caving video on Xiaohongshu .

Day 5 Motorcycle & River Tracing

After a night’s sleep, I regained my strength. In the morning, we gathered at Betty’s old house and set off to the valley where we trace the river. The distance was quite long, so Devin took Betty on a motorcycle, and I took another friend on a motorcycle. This is my first time riding a motorcycle, and it’s also my first time carrying people. But it’s easy to learn, and a motorcycle starts more smoothly than a battery-powered scooter.

On a sunny day, I rode along county roads, country roads, and mountain trails, and passed a waterfall. I gradually heard the sound of springs and saw clear streams. I put on my sandals and stepped into the stream. It was cool but not ice-cold. I waded through the water and stepped on the rocks until I reached a pool of water. Betty frowned and said that someone had been here, and it had been vandalized. There were tracks of large vehicles on the road, and it turned out that a logging camp had been built in front of it.

We stopped by a pond, lit a fire and set up a frying pan. Betty fried a poached egg, sprinkled with freshly ground black pepper and salt, sandwiched it between slices of bread, and bit into it. The egg yolk flowed out, it was very delicious.

Devin worked hard, clearing the campground and pulling up the hammock in front of the rocks and trees. After eating and drinking, I lay on the hammock, looked at the woods and sky on the top of the mountain in the distance, and took a nap.

After packing up the garbage and luggage, we returned the same way. The sun gradually softened and the sun on the valley illuminated the intimate backs of Betty and Devin. What a beautiful afternoon.

Day 6 Family State Hiking

Following the guidance from the Guilin chapter of “Lonely Planet”, my friend and I planned to hike all the way from Xingping to Family Prefecture (14 kilometers) today.

Take a bus from Yangshuo Bus Station to Xingping. Walk along the Li River from Xingping Ancient Town to the Lengshui Village Ferry. It costs 10 yuan to take a boat across the river. Crossing the river is Bama Painting Mountain. Then continue walking along the country road to Jiatianxia Scenic Area.

This part of the walking experience was not very good. The highest temperature that day reached 31 degrees. There were few shade trees along the road and the roads were smooth and hot. But when you reach the Jiatianxia section, it begins to turn into a stone path along the river, with shade trees and cool breeze.

Unexpectedly, something happened here that cleansed my soul. There are scattered vendors setting up stalls in Jiatianxia Scenic Area, some of which are elderly grandparents. According to my usual habit, I ignored the vendors along the way and did not talk to them. My friend bought two small fish stones from an old lady. The old lady didn’t have a QR code, but luckily I brought cash. The old lady hesitated to change my 50-yuan banknotes into change, and took the change from her roll. I found a brand new banknote and gave it to me. The roll of change reminded me of my grandma. I haven’t reacted yet.

Next we met an old man who was picking up slingshots with his friends. The old man was deaf and could not hear our bargaining clearly. He was just making gestures for ten yuan each, then picked up pebbles on the ground and showed us how his slingshot can be shot. far away. Suddenly I was moved. The two stores my friends bought were both handicraft stalls owned by grandparents, but I just bought a bag of oranges to quench my thirst. Watching the grandpa’s demonstration, I turned away and my eyes got wet.

When I came back in the evening and lay on the bed, I thought again of the grandmothers and grandfathers I met today. I imagined the scene of them standing guard in front of the stall and in the empty old house during the long afternoon. My tears kept flowing down. I don’t know. Why, I just hope that I can be a kind person in the future.

Walking along the stone road, there were no other tourists. We were the only ones on the road, and there were many fallen leaves. On the roadside, we constantly see warning signs saying “Land-in section, proceed with caution”, and advertisements “Family Weekly Hiking Section, please call xxx to charter a car”. The experience along the way was very good, passing through the whole family village and arriving at the Quanjiazhou Ferry.

“Lonely Planet” said that the ferry on the other side had stopped running, so we made some repairs at the ferry, washed our feet and cooled off. I accidentally saw the river crossing phone number on the passenger boat at the ferry. After calling, someone came to take us across the river by boat for 10 yuan per person.

After crossing the river, there is an orchard. The direction to Xingping is blocked, so you can only walk along the river in the direction of Yangdi. I met fruit farmers resting by the river. Their large oranges had been picked and purchased, and they were leaving the small fruits and were about to throw them away. When they met us, they gave us a big bag of fresh and sweet oranges.

Continuing forward is a comfortable stone-paved hiking route. Villagers said that there were many people hiking here in previous years, but there were very few people this year. When we arrived at Yangdi Ferry and crossed the river, it was already past 5 pm. The primary school was over. We waited for the bus at 6:10 with the primary school students. The primary school students got off the bus one by one along the way. We walked around the mountains. The cool mountain breeze blew in through the car window, smoke drifted from the countryside, and the sunshine was gentle. Yangdi’s bus can go directly to Yangshuo Bus Station, get off at the station, and ride your own electric bike back to the B&B.

Experience in food, clothing, housing and transportation

I came to Yangshuo on May Day. The first two days were rainy and cold, with temperatures ranging from 13 to 23 degrees. Wear a medium-thick jacket and long trousers. The weather will soon get hotter after the weather clears, reaching almost 30 degrees Celsius. It is recommended to prepare long-sleeved clothes and pants, sun protection hats, umbrellas, and non-slip sandals.

When eating, I try to arrange to eat with the innkeeper. At other times, a bowl of Guilin rice noodles costs 15. The authentic rice noodles here do not come with soup, but are mixed with some pickled beans and pickled radish, which is very delicious. The signature rice noodles come with three kinds of meat, the most expensive, usually 15-20 yuan; I often eat pot-roasted rice noodles, 10-15 yuan.

I stayed in Yangshuo for 7 nights. The accommodation in three Airbnb B&Bs was all comfortable, but I still recommend that the B&B owner is very fun-loving and will organize many interesting activities.

It is very convenient to have an electric car near Yangshuo County. Whether you are going to the market in Baisha Town or playing in the villages of Jiuxian County, it is not a problem to go back and forth for 20 kilometers. It is estimated that the mileage can be up to 40 kilometers, and the speed on flat roads can reach 45 kilometers per hour.

There are buses from Yangshuo Bus Station to Xingping Town and Yangdi Township. The price is less than 20 yuan and there are many buses. There is Yangshuo Fengming Tourism Distribution Center not far from the bus station, and the high-speed rail line can directly reach Yangshuo Station.

Yangshuo County People’s Hospital can provide nucleic acid testing, as can Baisha Town Health Center. Both are priced at 8 yuan per person for one test for multiple people.

If you want to experience bamboo rafting, you should choose the Yulong River section and be careful with wet shoes; the Lijiang River is full of electric plastic tube rafts with motors, which are very noisy.