Yangshuo County Brief Introduction
Yangshuo County, under the jurisdiction of Guilin, is on the top of China Most Beautiful County List in 2014. Located at the southeast of Guilin and 65 km to the city center, established 1400 years ago, Yangshuo is often considered as the most beautiful part of Guilin.
Except that the essence section of Li River (from Yangdi to Xingping) is in Yangshuo, there are many other attractions, like Yulong River, Big Banyan Tree, and West Street and so on in the lovely county. In Yangshuo, you’ll always find at least one thing to enjoy and relax. Cycle along Ten Miles Gallery, cruise on Yulong River with a bamboo raft, watch the landscape performance of Impression Liu Sanjie, or just enjoy a beer with the locals at West Street.
Top Attractions in Yangshuo County
Filled with graceful water and marvelous mountain, Yangshuo has many fascinating attractions for you. Among them, most famous ones are Yulong River, West Street, Moon Hill and Big Banyan Tree. Most of Yangshuo’s attractions require a ticket fee. It’s advisable to buy package ticket if you are going to tour many attractions.>> Learn More about Attractions in Yangshuo
Recommended Hot Tours in Guilin & Yangshuo:
Yulong River is the longest tributary of Li River in Yangshuo. Though the overall length is 45.5 km, the Yulong River we often talk about refers to the section from Shangri-La of Baisha Town to Gongnong Bridge. This section is about 16 km, flowing through 28 barrages and hundreds of little attractions. The whole Yulong River Scenic Spot has no so-called modern architecture and no trace of artificial touch. Everything is just original, natural, pure and primitive. If comparing Li River as young lady from an eminent family, while Yulong River is a pretty girl of humble birth.
Learn more about Yulong River >>
If you come to Yangshuo, you definitely should not miss West Street. With a history over 1400 years, West Street is the oldest and most prosperous street in Yangshuo. Less than 1 km, the street is paved with slab stones and forms an “S” shape. Architectures along the street inherit the Ming and Qing architecture style: pitched roof with grey-green roof tile, white wall with little hanging balcony.
Dubbed as “Foreigner Street”, West Street is the product of the perfect collision of Chinese and Western culture. Almost all signboards of the souvenir shops, restaurants, cafes and bars are written in both Chinese and English. From shop owners and waiters to vendors on the street, almost everyone here can speak fluent English. In China, a poem once described: visit a place with elegant and free from vulgarity to recharge your body and mind, and get a moment’s leisure from the worldly concerns. Yangshuo is just this kind of place.
Learn more about West Street >>
8 km from Yangshuo County center, Moon Hill got the name for a big hole penetrating it on the top, and it looks like a moon from distant. With a shape of arch, the hole is about 50 m in width and height. There are many stalactites hanging in the hole. In sunny day, you can see blue sky and white clouds through the hole. There is a little path at the hill foot, and tourists can walk through the path to appreciate the Moon Hole on the Moon Hill from different angles. It’s only need 15 minutes’ walk. Following marble steps to the hill top, you can climb on the hill to observe the hole from close distance. There are over 800 steps in total and it will cost about 1 hour to finish the climbing.
Getting There: (1) take taxi or electro-tricycle to Moon Hill from Yangshuo. (2) Rent a bike and ride to Moon Hill from Yangshuo (about 1 hour’s ride). (3) Take bamboo rafting along Yulong River and disembark at Gongnong Bridge and then walk about 1 km to Moon Hill.
Opening Hour: 7:00 ~ 18:30
Learn more about Moon Hill >>
Big Banyan Tree
Big Banyan Tree is located in Chuanyan Village and is 6 km from Yangshuo County. It is said that the tree has a history of over 1400 years, just as old as the county. 17m in height and 7.05 m in girth, it will take several people to hug the trunk, and the shade of the tree covers an area of about three basketball fields. According to legend, lovers who walk a full circle around the tree can enjoy a long lasting love and have a happy life. Tourists can rent ethnic clothes in the scenic spot for photography, about $10 per suit.
Getting There: take battery car or ride a bicycle from Yangshuo to Big Banyan Tree
Opening Hour: 7:00 ~ 18:30
Entertainment & Activities
For those who want to have a close contact with Li River and prefer a shorter trip, take a motor-driven raft is a good choice. The route for the motor-driven raft is the most beautiful part of Li River cruise. Start from Yangdi and end at Xingping. Many famous attraction sites are located along this section, like the 20 yuan banknote scene, Nine Horses Fresco Hill, Huangbu Reflection, etc. The whole rafting is about 1~ 2 hours and there is no toilet on the raft, so make sure you answer the call of nature before boarding.>> Learn More about Featured Activities in Yangshuo
Bamboo Rafting along Yulong River
Bamboo rafting is the most popular way to appreciate the beauty of Yulong River. Unlike the motor-driven raft on Li River, the bamboo rafts on Yulong River are all poled by human, and each raft can only take two adult passengers. Yulong River is a very peaceful river, so the bamboo rafting is very safe. The whole rafting trip from Jinlong Bridge to Gongnong Bridge is about 5 to 6 hours, and normally, travelers will choose the first half section or the second half section of Yulong River to take bamboo raft. The first half section is from Jinlong Bridge to Jiuxian Village, and the second half section is from Chaoyang Pier to Gongnong Bridge, and each will take about 2 ~ 3 hours. Except for that, there are many other rafting routes of different section. Tourists can choose according to their detailed itinerary.
Get to Jinlong Bridge Pier: (1) Take “Yangshuo – Jinbao” (“阳朔 – 金宝”) bus at Yangshuo North Bus Station and get off at Jinlong Bridge Pier station, about 40 minutes’ drive. (2) Take a chartered bus to get there.
Get to Chaoyang Pier: take a chartered bus to get there
Back to Yangshuo: (1) You can rent a bicycle to ride back and return it at Yangshuo Park after you disembark at Jiuxian Pier or Gongnong Bridge Pier. (2) Take a chartered bus to get back.
(1) It’s better not take any valuables to the raft in case of dropping into the river; when the raft flows through the barrages, there will be water spray, thus take water-proof preventions to your camera and cellphone.
(2) Wear life jacket in case of any accidents; don’t swim in the river. Take two plastic bags to wrap your shoes to prevent the water.
Learn more about Yangshuo Bamboo Rafting >>
Hiking along Yulong River
Another good way to travel Yulong River is hiking. Unlike the bamboo rafting, hiking will need more strength. However, you will be rewarded with a closer contact with the idyllic scenery. Plus, it’s a good opportunity to see some old and peaceful villages along the river. Normally, the hike usually starts from Yulong Bridge or Jinlong Bridge, following the downstream of the river and ends at Gongnong Bridge. The whole route is about 12 km, and normally takes about half day.
Getting to Yulong Bridge: take Yangshuo – Guilin bus and get off at Baisha Town, and then take a tricycle to Yulong Bridge.
Getting to Jinlong Bridge: take Yangshuo – Jinbao bus and get off at Jinlong Bridge.
When you are tired: there are several piers along Yulong River and you can take bamboo raft at those piers. So if you are tired in the hiking, you can take bamboo raft at the closest pier from you and finish the rest journey with an easier way.
For more hiking information about Yangshuo, please check Guilin Hiking Tour.
To travel around Yangshuo, the most recommended transportation tool is bicycle. Yangshuo is not big; however, many pretty attractions are in the countryside, so biking around Yangshuo is a great way to travel around. Plus, the rent for the bike is very cheap, about $10 in normally days, and $15 ~ $25 for holidays. Flexibility and environment-protection are also advantages of bike than other transportation tool. As the saying goes:” no bike trips, no Yangshuo!”
Classic Biking Route: Yangshuo to Moon Hill (Ten Miles Gallery)
The section from Yangshuo to Moon Hill is also called Ten Miles Gallery, for the scenery along the road is just like the scene in the painting. Ten Miles Gallery is the most classis route for biking.
Route: Yangshuo Park – Big Banyan Tree Park – Moon Hill– Yangshuo
Time: 2 ~ 3 hours
Details:start from Yangshuo around 8:30, then riding along Yangshuo – Lipu road for 20 minutes and get to Gopngnong Bridge. Keep riding and you will arrive Big Banyan Tree. You can visit it or just keep riding. After that, you will come to Moon Hill. Take a left turn at Moon Hill to get to Moon Village, where is the best location to observe Moon Hill. You can have lunch at Moon Village and get some rest. After lunch, you can go back to Yangshuo along the same route.
Learn more about Biking in Yangshuo >>
Photography in Yangshuo
Generally, for shutterbugs, it can be divided into four areas for photography.
Li River Scenic Spot Area: on the way from Guilin to Yangshuo, Li River has so many places you can shoot. The most beautiful part is from Yangdi to Xingping, which is in Yangshuo. Most famous sites for shutterbugs in this section are Xianggong Mountain (28 km from Yangshuo, sunrise and sea of clouds are best), Huangbu Reflection (blue sky and white clouds are best, also can shoot morning fog and misty and rainy Li River in spring), and Xingping Scenic Spot (sunset glow and ancient town are best).
Yangshuo County Area: West Street is the primary shooting subject. Ancient architecture and modern lifestyle make West Street the great place for cultural landscape photography.
Yulong River Scenic Spot Area: compare with Li River area, you can shoot more peaceful photos in Yulong River. Also, the idyllic scenery along Yulong River is extremely beautiful and farming scenes of the local farmer and buffalos are great shoot subject.
High Viewpoint Area: if you want to shoot the panoramic view of Yangshuo County, then high viewpoints of Yanghuo are your best choice. The popular high viewpoints are: Television Tower (30 ~ 40 minutes’ walk, and it will take about 100 minutes to ascend the highest point), Bilian Peak (40~ 50 minutes’ walk).
Check more about Yangshuo Photography.
For detailed photography tips and itinerary, please check Guilin Photography Tour.
Longjing River Kayaking
If you are looking for some excitement, Longjing River Kayaking is definitely your thing. Located at Yangshuo and 30 km from the county center, the 6 km kayaking route has a water level difference of 180 m. You will encounter a dozen of falls (3 ~ 6 m) and 108 turns in the way. It’s a great way to release pressure and have great fun in the tension and excitement. The kayaking is more suitable for those with good health situation. Children should be accompanied with adults during the kayaking.
Getting There: take travel bus from Yangshuo Bus Station to Longjing River Scenic Spot at 9:00, 12:00 and 14:30, about $32 for round trip.
Best Time: April to October
Notice: bring extra clothes, including underwear, to change after the kayaking; drink a cup of ginger tea to prevent colds.
Due to special karst landform, Yangshuo is the paradise for rock climbing in China. Both beginners and professional players can find the suitable rock climbing destinations. Most of the places for rock climbing are located along the road from Yangshuo to Gaotian, and you can get there by bus or chartered car. Most rock climbing beginners choose to experience this activity at the rock climbing place near Moon Hill, while the professionals are spreading all over the surrounding rock climbing places of Yangshuo. If you have your own equipment, then you can choose free spots to practice; if not, there are more than 10 rock climbing facilities in Yangshuo provide beginner courses.
Price for the Course: about $170 ~ $180/half day, $300/day and $1800 ~$2000/week
Recommended Places: Moon Hill, Big Banyan Tree, Jinmao Cave (金猫洞), Jiuping Hill (酒瓶山), Butterfly Spring(蝴蝶泉)
Impression Liu Sanjie
Released to public at 2004, Impression Liu Sanjie is a large-scale landscape performance directed by famous Chinese Director – Zhang Yimou. The performance combines Guilin scenery and the ethnic minorities’ culture, and the whole project is just integrated into the nature. Located at the confluence of Li River and Tianjia River, facing the famous Shutong Hill of Yangshuo, the performance takes twelve hills and vast sky as its stage background, which is the largest landscape stage background in the world. Over a hundred local ethnic performers have presented a visual feast against the light and smoke for you.
Location: No.1 Tianyuan Road, Yangshuo County
Getting There: (1) Walk about 20 minutes from West Street. (2) Take a battery car to there.
Performing Time: 20:00 at regular time. Weekends and golden weeks: 19:40 and 21:10. Normally, the performance will be closed for a month before Spring Festival.
Ticket: orinary seats: $228 for C. VIP seats: $268 for B2 and $358 for B1. Free for children below 1.2 m (no seats). Children from 1.2 m to 1.4 will pay $85 for each.
>>Check more about Top 7 Impression Shows in China
No airport and railway station, so you can only take bus from Guilin to get to Yangshuo. There are commuting bus between Guilin and Yangshuo, and you can take it at Guilin Railway Station. For direct line: $20/person, regular line: $15/person.
Taxi: Yangshuo provide taxi service, however, only few taxis are managed. The taxis here aren’t metered, so you need to negotiate the price beforehand.
Bus and Battery Car: bus, minibus and battery car are the main transportation vehicles. Bus is mainly commuting between Yangshuo and Guilin, Xingping, Yangdi, Jinbao and Puyi. Minibus is mainly running to Gaotian and Fuli. As for the battery car, normally $1/person in the county center, and if you go to Moon Hill scenic spot, you need to negotiate the price with the driver.
Cruise boat and raft: to cruise on Li River, you can take cruise boat and motor-driven raft. For detailed information, please check Li River Guide. There is also bamboo raft, mainly operated on Yulong River. For details, please see Bamboo Rafting along Yulong River.Useful Links:
There are many hotels in Yangshuo County. Large-scale hotels are fully equipped, and most of them have independent dining room, thus the price is a little bit high, from $200 ~ $600. Middle-sized hotels are normally decorated in different styles and charge lower than big hotels, from $100 ~ $300. Family inns are one feature in Yangshuo. They spread all over Yangshuo and charge from $60 ~ $100, however, the facilities of these inns are poor compared with the hotels. Check more about Where to Stay in Yangshuo.
Location: first choice would be West Street, then the Xianqian Street, Yangshuo Park and Pantao Road. If you prefer a quiet environment, you can stay at Xingping Ancient Town.
2. Best Time to Visit: April to October
It will enter into rainy season from March, at this time, the water flow will quicken and it’s not good to see the reflection of the mountain on Li River. However, the weather at this time is very cool and you can also see the rainy and misty Li River. Temperature in summer is rather high, but the river at this time is very clear and peaceful. If you are afraid of the high temperature, you can visit in autumn.
Top Attractions in Guilin
- Li River
- Elephant Trunk Hill
- Reed Flute Cave
- Daxu Ancient Town
- Huashan Rock Art
- Lingqu Canal
- Yao Mountain
- Yulong River
- West Street
- Moon Hill
- Xingping Ancient Town
- Xianggong Hill
- Impression Sanjie Liu
- Longsheng Rice Terraces
- Ping’an Rice Terraces
- Jinkeng Rice Terraces
- Longji Ancient Zhuang Village
- Huangluo Yao Village
- More Attractions in Guilin
Extending Readings for Guilin Travel Planning
- Activities in Guilin
- Guilin Transportation
- Yangshuo Transportation
- Longsheng Transportation
- Guilin Maps
- Yangshuo Maps
- Longsheng Maps
- Weather in Guilin
- Guilin Hotels
- Guilin Travel Guide
- Yangshuo Travel Guide
- Longsheng Travel Guide
- How to Plan a Guilin Tour
- Guilin 72-hour Visa-free
- Biking in Yangshuo
- All Guilin Travel Articles
- Popular Guilin Tour Packages
Recommended Yangshuo Tours
Top 3 Yangshuo tours chosen by most customers to explore Yangshuo in the best way. Check the detailed itinerary, or tailor your own trip now with us.
Guilin / Yangshuo / Longsheng
Guilin / Yangshuo
Guilin / Longsheng / Guilin / Yangshuo
Start planning your tailor-made holiday to China by contacting one of our specialists. Once inquired, you’ll get a response within 0.5~23.5 hours.Customize a Trip
Have a question? Get answers from our travel experts or guests
- Your Question:
- Your Name:
- Your Email: