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Xingping Ancient Town Discovery

Xingping, is located in the northeast of Yangshuo County, Guilin, 25 kilometers away from the county town, and it differs from the Xingping Town in Shaanxi Province. With aboundant historic relics and the essence of the karst views in Guilin, Xingping is a highly recommended ancient town combined with both cultural and natural sites.

Here you can leisurely wander along the aged street, appreciating the ancient buildings, getting to know more about the local people. It has some resemblances to the West Street in Yangshuo, but the former one is much less crowded. Most of the ancient buildings with various aged bricks and tiles are well preserved. The southeast side of the ancient street is the site of Xingping County Town. The figure of the city wall is still clear, and the fragments of ancient tiles can be seen almost everywhere. However, the bustling county town which once was, presents itself as a quaint and quiet village solemnly, as if it is telling people about the historical vicissitudes of the ancient town for more than 1,730 years.

Recommended Hot Tours in Guilin & Yangshuo:

>> 3 Days Classic Guilin & Li River Cruise

>> 4 Days Highlights of Guilin, Yangshuo & Longji

The note scene of China 20 RMB is the most famous attraction here, known as "Yellow Cloth Shoal". Some photographers come here especially for the remarkable view. Besides taking photos, you can also try the adventurous featured-activity, bamboo rafting from Yangdi to Xingping. Either the stunning photos or the exciting experience can be worthwhile and memoriable for your life time.

Xingping Ancient Town

Xingping Ancient Town

How to get to Xingping Ancient Town

-Address: Xingping Town, Yangshuo County, Guilin 桂林市阳朔县兴坪镇

Guilin to Xingping

Option 1 - Li River Cruise

There are 4-star cruise ships departing from Guilin Zhujiang Pier (Pinyin: Zhujiang Matou 竹江码头)to Yangshuo Shuidongmen Pier (Pinyin: Shuidongmen Matou 水东门码头). It usually takes about 3 hours from Guilin to "Yellow Cloth Shoal" (20 RMB note scene). On your way from Guilin to Yangshuo, the regular cruise ship will get by Xingping but won't stop here until reaching Yangshuo pier. If you want to get off at Xingping, you may need communicate with your agent/guide at least one day in advance.

Learn more about Li River Cruise >>

Option 2 - By Bus

There are buses running from Guilin to Xingping (7am - 2pm), and the ticket is around CNY 30 per person. The duration is about 2 hours. The serving stations are Guilin South Bus Station and Xingping Bus Station.

Guilin South Bus Station 桂林客运南站

Address:Chadian Rd. Xiangshan District, Guilin桂林市象山区茶店路

Xingping Bus Station 兴坪汽车站

Address:The North Intersection of Xinrong Street and Xin Street新榕街与新街交叉口北

Yangshuo to Xingping

Option 1 - By Taxi

You can take a taxi from West Street Area, Yangshuo to Xingping Ancient Town. The distance is about 25km and it takes about half an hour to get there. Usually,the taxi fee is about CNY 50 and it may change in different season.

Option 2 - By Bus

There are also buses to Xingping from Yangshuo Bus Station (7:10am - 2:40pm). The regular bus departs in every 20min. The ticket is about CNY 10. After you get to Xingping Bus Station, the ancient town is very close to it and you only need walk around 10min to get there.

Li River Tourist Map

Click to Enlarge Li River Tourist Map

Guilin/Yangshuo to Xingping Map

Guilin/Yangshuo to Xingping Map

What to See at Xingping

The Landscape - 20 RMB Note Scene

Yellow Cloth Shoal is the essence of the Li River. It is located in the ancient town of Xingping, right close by the Li River. The cruise ship passes through Yangdi and Nine-Horse Fresco Hill. Li river is gradually broadened with the stunning reflection of wavy mountains on the mirror-like surface. Not far away from the Nine-Horse Fresco Hill lies the Yellow Cloth Shoal, which is the most beautiful attraction known by its picturesque reflection in Guilin. Here the river is so clear that you can see a large beige stone slab at the bottom of the river, which is so big, just like a piece of yellow cloth lying on the riverbed. "Yellow Cloth Shoal" is named after it.

To appreciate the reflection needs a right timing: in rainy days, the reflection is broken by raindrops; in foggy days, the reflection is swallowed up by thick fog. Only in the sunny and windless day, you will see the most clear reflection. It seems that the beautiful reflections of mountains are painted on the "yellow cloth", which are so clear that people from far away can hardly distinguish which one is real. Thus, the scene of "yellow cloth reflection" is formed.

The scenery is so famous that even printed as the background note on the new version of China 20 RMB. There are two giant paintings hanging at the Chinese Embassy of the Headquarters at UN. One is the Great Wall, representing China's "cultural landscape" and the other is the "Yellow Cloth Shoal", representing China's "natural landscape".

Learn more about Li River >>


20RMB Note Scene


Xingping Ancient Street

The People - Various Folk-Custom Activities

When visiting the Xingping, you will get to experience their lifestyle by watching them fishing with cormorants. The fishermen of the Li River use cormorants to catch fish. The well-trained cormorants used to be the fishermen's "tools of the trade", but now they are used to show their ancestral culture dated back to generations ago. You can definitely get a unique shoot revealing about the harmonious relationship between man and nature.

If you come during the spring festival, the dragon and lion dancing activities will be held. There are two kinds of dragon performance in Xingping, namely the straw dragon and the bench dragon. The former one is a dragon figure tied up with straw, and the dragon's body is about 15 sections. Each section is inserted with some burning incenses. When the straw dragon body is in the dance, the burning incenses flutter with the wind. Whenever a straw dragon passes by a family, the family will insert incenses on the dragon and set off firecrackers to pray for a peaceful and wealthy new year.

The bench dragon is divided into three parts: dragon head, dragon body and dragon tail held by three dancers. The dragon head and tail are made of bamboos and colored paper. The dragon body is mounted on a two-person bench. The people who hold the dragon under the bench usually wear folk-featured masks, dancing with the music played by the traditional Chinese musical instruments such ad Erhu and Sanxian.

In addition to the Spring Festival, on the 19th day of every September of Chinese lunar calender, a traditional temple fair will be here. It is said that is a day related to worshiping the Buddha called Guanyin. Xingping Temple Fair has a strong folk color, as well as local opera performances, with over 400 years' history.

>> 5 Days Best Guilin In-depth Vacation (Li River, Yangshuo & Longji Terrace)


Xingping Fisherman


The Bench Dragon Dance

What to Do at Xingping

Bamboo Rafting

Where can i enjoy the most essential scenery of Li River ? The bamboo rafting from Yangdi to Xingping is one of the top-recommended activities which you can do in Guilin. These small rafts are much more adorable and special than the large cruise ships that pass by and far cheaper. ¥80 for 2 people or ¥80 per person during peak time. The Yangdi-Xingping section has gotten substantially more expensive. It is now strictly controlled with an official ticket office to buy your tickets and touts at the official docks have all but disappeared. It is now ¥216 per person and an extra ¥35 for each empty seat on the raft up to 4 seats. The opening time is 8:00am - 16:50pm. During 10:30am-12:00pm, the bamboo rafting service will stop openning for lunch break. Children under 1.2m & younger than 7 years old, adults older than 70 years old, and the pregnant can not book/buy tickets for Li River bamboo rafting concerning about security reasons.

Learn more about Bamboo Rafting >>


Besides the exciting bamboo rafting, you can also go to the 20 RMB note scene and get a nice shoot of heavenly landscape in Guilin, or wandering in the ancient street, searching and appreciating the ancient architectures and relics. There are also some old fishermen working by the Li River with their cormorants. It's recommended to have them a nice shoot before "Yellow Cloth Shoal" at dawn/sunset of a sunny and windless day. The fishermen will be very delighted to cooperate if you can tip them for photographic modelling. Check more about Yangshuo Photography.


Bamboo Rafting at Xingping


Xingping Scenery

Where to eat at Xingping

This Old Place Cafe

-Address: Walk up the main street from the waterfront until the first intersection - take the left and then the first right

-Recommended Dish: Sweet & Sour Chicken

Love Landscape Restaurant

-Address: Rongtan St. (betwixt the bus station and This Old Place)

-Recommended Drink: Snake wine

Quite a few beef, chicken, or pork dishes and speciality including Li River fish, quail, and bamboo rats with English Menus.

Warm Cafe

-Address: Across the corner from This Old Place Hostel

-Recommended Dish: Kungpao Chicken, Banana Pancakes, and Eggplant Dish

Homestyle food with English menu

Ganga India Restaurant

-Address: 90# New Street (out of the bus station , turn right and follow the road ,approximately less 200 m you will find it, restaurant located on the left)

-Recommended Reason: Authentic Indian food with English menus and the chef who used to work at a 5-star hotel.


Ganga India Restaurant

Where to stay at Xingping

This Old Place Hostel

-Address: 5 Rongtan St (From the waterfront, head up the main street (Rongtan St) - it is located on the left after the small rise)

This hostel is very close to the Li River, and easy to be found. The staff are very friendly and can speak English very well. The room is a little small, but comfortable. There are also double rooms, which can enjoy the river and mountain scenery. The kitchen serves wood-fired pizza for dinner. They have bikes to rent, but they are not well maintained.

Xingping Our Inn

-Address: Dahebei Village (the other side of Xingping Town, take a ferry to cross the river from the Xingping pier)

Xingping Our Inn looks like a little fancy garden facing the Li River and karst landscape. The rooms are clean, comfortable, well-served and the gardens are beautiful. The cafe offers fresh vegetables and fruits grown from the yard.

Lao Zhai Shan hotel

-Address: Xingping port (Walk towards the xingping port. Before the pier, you will see a circular doorway. Go through the door and the hotel will be 50 meters ahead along the hill)

Laozhai Shan Hotel is a hotel with reasonable price and beautiful environment, located at the foot of Laozhai Mountain, overlooking Xingping Port nearby the Lijiang River. It is run by an old Japanese man and his Chinese wife. The hotel has rooms with large windows, which can offers you the picturesque Li River landscape. Although it is called a hotel, it is more like a cozy homestay.

Kelly's Guesthouse

-Address: No. 12 Old Street Xingping (Diagonally across from #7 Cafe)

The owner of the hotel also runs the famous cafe at Yangshuo called Kelly's Cafe. It's located in the middle of Xingping Old Street. Behind it is a beautiful patio, surrounded by huge banana leaves and beautiful scenery of the karst landscape. The rooms offered by the hotel are very modern, with flat screen TV, AC, WiFi and bathrooms.


Kelly's Guesthouse


Homestay's Balcony

Travel With China Discovery

If you want to get rid of hustle of public transportation and troublesome navigation, you can book a private tour package which covers sightseeing, dining and transfer from us. Our local tour guide and driver will escort you to Xingping with speed and convenience, and take care of all the details. You just need to focus on sightseeing. >> Contact us now

Warm Tips

  • Ticket: The bamboo rafting ticket (Yangdi-Xingping) for adult and child taller than 1.2m is CNY 216 per person. The bamboo rafting tickets are Not availabe for children under 1.2m & younger than 7 years old, adults older than 70 years old and the pregnant. Children taller than 1.2m but shorter than 1.3m can enjoy the free tickets.
  • Time: Visitors are recommended to go to see the 20RMB note scene during sunset & sunrise.
  • Safety: Please watch out your personal belongings and take care of your children while visiting the water area by boat/bamboo raft.

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