Li River Cruise 漓江游船

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Li River Cruise

Li River – A Mile-long Natural Gallery:
Li River flows through rapids and shallows, past valleys, waterfalls, bamboo groves and green rocks. The verdant mountains are covered with lush bamboo and luxuriant forests. Guilin’s mountains and hills are never too tall. Reflections of these elegant conical limestone peaks on mirror-like clear water of the Li River are just like a fairyland on earth.
It is just like a lush ribbon gracefully winding through Guilin. An eighty-three-kilometer boat ride down the Lijiang River from Guilin south to Yangshuo is like a trip through a natural art gallery. Li River is famous for its beautiful hills and waters, wonderful caves and rocks.
The scenery along both banks is just like Chinese paintings. This was what Bill Clinton said: “I heard of the name of Li River long ago. Today I visit Li River. It is more vivid and genuine than what I thought before. Nowhere is like Guilin. It makes me think of the traditional Chinese paintings."
The Scenic Voyage:
The 84-km Li River from Guilin to Yangshuo has three distinct sections. The voyage is fully of scenic spots which are too numerous to mention. Therefore I’ll just name the most remarkable ones.

Guilin City to Yangdi (46 km)
The scenic spots here are a bit away from the waterway. The most famous and nearby Guilin is the Elephant Trunk Hill. I am sure you can spot it easily as it resembles exactly an elephant with its trunk in water. There is also the Sword Hill and a number of other beautiful peaks.

Yangdi to Xingping (17 km)
This section has Li River’s most beautiful landscape of waters and hills. You’ll cruise on an extremely picturesque waterway. Shapes of the peaks are just miraculous. A flying waterfall suspends highly at the Erlang Gorge. Here are the two most scenic spots.

Mural Hill of Nine Horses - the precipice is straight as if cut by knife. Chinese legend said it resembles nine horses each of different action and posture.
If you are able to see nine of them, you are the winner of the next Imperial Examination. If you see eight only, you are the first runner-up.

Xingping to Yangshuo (20 km)
After the Camel Crossing River and Screw Hill, you can see the highest Green Lotus Peak. Soon after it you will reach Yangshuo. When you see the Green Lotus Peak from its front, it is as smooth as a mirror, so it is also called the Mirror Hill.

Li River Cruise Overview:
The best way to view the variety of karsts (they come in all sizes of cones, cylinders, mounds and crags!) is by a cruise along the Li River. One karst is called "Elephant Trunk Hill," resembling a giant elephant whose bent trunk dips into the water for a drink. Another is called "Dragon Head Hill," and yet another is named "Five Fingers Hill." A number of karsts soar hundreds of feet - straight up - from the riverbank. Some tours - including yours - end in Yangshou, about 50 miles downstream from Guilin. It's quite a journey!

Li River cruises usually start in the morning from Guilin and arrive at Yangshuo after lunch. The entire journey lasts about four hours. Boats are air-conditioned. You can stay inside or enjoy the lovely river breezes on the open deck. The viewing platform on the open area might be even more crowded than the main cabin. Of course, you have better views and closer encounter with the beautiful nature.

Li River cruises serve lunch on board. Don't expect a great feast as you are here for the spectacular scenery, not the food. However local favourites and fresh catches from the Li River will be served.

Best time for a Li River cruise is before or after the rain season. April, May, September and October are peak seasons. Please be prepared for crowds.

Li River cruises end in Yangshou. You can take an hour long bus trip back to Guilin. Or stay behind and relax for a couple of days in Yangshuo.

Interesting Cruise Sidelights:
A Li River cruise is not only for the beautiful landscape. The special treat is the opportunity to observe the daily activities of local people.
Farmers and their water buffaloes work at the rice paddies. Fishermen glide on narrow bamboo rafts. Some of them have their working bird cormorant help catching fish. Duck herders watch over their flocks. Women do washing or cooking at the river bank.
The Li River cruise is a great away to observe an authentic countryside life style. Bring your binocular.

Last Updated ( Friday, 19 June 2009 16:48 )  

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