Fools Paradise – An evolving cultural masterpiece

Branded a fool over his decision some 13 years ago to create a large scale art park amongst the ethereal landscape of Guilin, Rhy Chang Tsao’s pet project, affectionately named “Fools Paradise”, now boasts more than 200 magnificently sculptured artworks that dot manicured grounds like rare species of flowers. Whilst it may be somewhat difficult…

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Train from Nanning to Hanoi

  The overnight train service running daily between Nanning and Hanoi is very comfortable in Chinese soft sleeper carriages however don’t look forward to getting too much sleep.   Departure from Nanning is currently at 6.45 pm, with arrival in Pingxiang a little after 10pm for Chinese border control formalities which took around 90 minutes.   …

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Fall Colour in Yangshuo?

I love lush green landscapes however the gorgeous colours of Fall or Autumn which take over the landscape with reds, oranges and yellows are a spectacular sight.       Whilst out cycling, I realized that it is unfortunately something that doesn’t happen with any real effect around Yangshuo.  Most of the plant species are either…

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Yangshuo to Longji Rice Terraces (4)

    Day 4 – Butterfly Valley to Pingan  (48 klms)   The hotel in Butterfly Valley is in a surprisingly beautiful location, next to a Yao minority village some 4 kilometres off the main highway in a gorge filled with luscious foliage and a gushing mountain stream.   For me, today was the big…

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Yangshuo to Longji Rice Terraces (3)

  Day 3 – Guilin to Butterfly Valley  (82 klms)   An easy ride this morning out of Guilin, we make our way through some wonderful little villages and classic rural China countryside under chilly but glorious blue skies and sunshine.    The karst scenery ended not far out of Guilin and for a short time…

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Yangshuo to Longji Rice Terraces – Rest Day

After yesterdays cold and wet weather we find things have deteriorated even further with a top forecast of only 8 degrees today.   We decide to postpone our Guilin departure till tomorrow (Friday) and return to Yangshuo to pick up warmer clothes.      This turned out to be a fantastic decision, not only for the…

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Yangshuo to Longji Rice Terraces (2)

    Day 2 – Xingping to Guilin  (72 kilometres)   Just the slightest feeling of fatigue and a case of raging saddle soreness were dominating my mind for the first 20 minutes on the bike this morning.   This all dissipated quite quickly as we emerged into a valley and cycled directly towards a row…

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Yangshuo to Longji Rice Terraces (1)

    This time of year in Yangshuo is usually a fantastic mixture of warm, dry days that are perfect for cycling.  So I decided to head off for a few days on a cycling research trip with one of the Directors over at Bike Asia    .   For the most part the route we followed was…

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The Cycle of Rice

  The cycle of rice has passed through its final phase with the 2nd harvest taking place throughout the countryside.     These times of intense activity witnessed during planting and harvesting make exploring the countryside just that little bit more interesting and alive.   Dry warm weather with fields of burnt gold contrasting superbly against…

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Yuzi Paradise

The melding of bold, modern art with an ethereal landscape is what Yuzi Paradise is all about.   Featuring an eclectic array of more than 200 artworks from some of the world’s most well known sculptors the park is literally a treasure chest laid open amongst beautiful karst landscape.   It is also the location of…

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Another Golden Week is Upon Us!

The build-up to the National Day Holiday this year has all been a little feverish with rumors abounding that many hotels have been fully booked weeks in advance, making for the busiest week ever!   Of course, the town does get very busy however accommodation capacity in Yangshuo is pretty huge these days with an…

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Yangshuo Specialties – Osmanthus

  The Guilin region is very well known for an abundance of Osmanthus.   The city also derives its name from these evergreen trees.  (guilin = osmanthus forest)   Renowned for its many health benefits, the sweetly scented flowers feature in a range of specialty products such as Osmanthus wine, Osmanthus tea, Osmanthus candies and Osmanthus…

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Yangshuo Specialties – Pomelo

  One of my lasting memories of the journey between Guilin and Yangshuo were the villages that seem to specialize in just one thing.   There is the village that makes cane/bamboo furniture, with chairs being the most popular item on display.   Then there was what I called “pomelo town”, clusters of pomelo pyramids neatly arranged…

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Yangshuo Specialties – Li River Stuffed Snails

  The abundance of waterways in the local area results in a good supply of snails which have long been a food source in the Yangshuo region.     The fleshy insides of the snails are scooped out, mixed with pork, chilli and green vegetables, then stuffed back inside the shell before being cooked.  Boiled, stir fried…

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Yangshuo Specialities – Guilin Mifen

  A very popular local dish, “Mifen (米粉)” means rice noodles.   The noodles are quickly boiled and served with a few slivers of cooked pork either with or without soup/stock depending on the restaurant.   Various condiments and a basic “soup” or stock can be added according to your own taste.   Condiments usually include fried…

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Pure Lotus Vegetarian Restaurant, Yangshuo

  After spending a bit of time in Yangshuo you might notice that although there are many places to eat, often the dishes end up being quite similar.   One of my personal favorites is Pure Lotus Vegetarian Restaurant, next door to Magnolia Hotel in Diecui Road, Yangshuo.   Their menu is full of highlights…

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Top 5 Ways to Enjoy Yangshuo’s Picture Postcard Scenery (3)

Number 3:  Hike (or Boat) from Yangdi to Xingping along the Li River     The most spectacular and well known section of Li River lies between Yangdi and Xingping.   (So famous that part has been immortalized on the 20 yuan note.)   A great way to experience this particular section of scenery is to…

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