The natural wonders of Yangshuo

Yangshuo, photo by Arian Zwegers

China has many scenic landscapes that you have probably seen on the covers of travel magazines and on postcards, and the most memorable and iconic image of China is probably one that involves karst mountains. Even among ancient traditional Chinese landscape paintings there are many examples that immortalize this interesting geographical features. And one of the best places in China where you can admire the karst scenery is Yanghuo, a lovely county and city close to Guilin. Yanghuo combines the best elements of China: amazing natural sights, temples, laid-back cafes and excellent restaurants, all wrapped up in a rich cultural and historical heritage. Whenever you want to leave the urban jungle behind, the natural wonders of Yangshuo will transport you into another world.

Yulong River valley

The valley of Yulong River is one of the most breath-takingly picturesque areas around Yangshuo, and among the best places to admire the karst mountains. While hiking and walking is possible, the best way to take a good look at the scenery without any obstruction and distraction is to float down the river on a raft at a leisurely pace. You will see not only the curiously shaped mountains, but also countless small villages and bridges over the river.

Moon Hill

Moon Hill, photo by Maria Ly

Moon Hill is most likely one of the most spectacular hill on the planet, and few other hill can compete with it in terms of strangeness. From a distance, Moon Hill looks like a huge triangle shaped forest covered hill with part of its base missing – indeed, it looks like a giant took a bite out of Moon Hill. Although the hill looks stunning from a distance, hiking up to the top will reveal some more enchanting scenery too! The trek to the top is not too difficult, but make sure to bring some drinks with you.

Silver Cave

There are several interesting caves in the area around Yangshuo, but Silver Cave is the most popular. The cave entrance is located in a particularly scenic area, and it is worth exploring around for a bit before entering the cave. The cave is an impressive underground network decorated with stalactites and stalagmites that form unique structure – hence areas of the cave have names such as ‘the vegetable garden’.

Big Banyan Tree

One of the most striking natural wonders of Yangshuo is actually alive – a towering, gigantic Banyan tree that has been planted in the times of the Sui Dynasty, meaning that the tree is about 1400 years old. The trunk’s circumference is 7 meters, and the tree is 17 meters tall, with foliage so thick that it barely lets the sun go through. The whole tree covers an area of a square kilometer!


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