Top Attractions in Guilin

Top 10 Famous Tourist Guilin Attractions in Guilin and Yangshuo

Lenn Liu
2534 Words/11 Minutes, By Lenn Liu, Updated June 14, 2024

Top things to do in Guilin must be the Li River Exploration in various ways, Guilin to Yangshuo Cruise is considered to be the most popular way, Hiking along the Li River is widely accepted by physically fit travelers, Bamboo rafting is the closest way to connect to the Li River, Helicopter overview is a Wow experience as well. In addition to this, some interesting cultural activities such as Cooking or Family Visiting or outdoor adventures such as Hiking, Cycling, Rock Climbing, etc can be added to your Guilin trip! Attractions in Yangshuo>> and Longsheng >>

Top 1: Li River

Li RiverLi River, Guilin

The Li River, part of the Xijiang river system in the Pearl River Basin, is the generic term for the upper reaches of the Gui River. It is located in the northeastern part of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region and is a key national scenic area, renowned as the largest and most beautiful karst landscape sightseeing area around the world.

The Li River originates from the LaoShanJie, northeast of Mao'er Mountain in Xing'an County, flows through Xing'an, Lingchuan, Guilin, Yangshuo and Pingle, with a total length of 164 kilometers. The river boasts clear water and its banks feature karst topography, rich in tourism resources. The famous Guilin scenery is located along the Li River. Notable scenic spots along the river include Crown Cave, Huangbu Reflection, and Nine Horse Mountain.

One of the most popular ways to experience the Li River is by bamboo rafting. You can enjoy the continuous stretch of peaks, peculiar rock formations, clear water, and beautiful pastoral landscapes along the way. Additionally, the picturesque scenery of the Li River has long been admired by literati and poets, who have left behind a wealth of praises and poems throughout history.

  • Address: Guilin, Guangxi
  • Open Hours: 7:00 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Tour Length: 4-5 hours

Top 2: Reed Flute Cave

Reed Flute CaveReed Flute Cave

Reed Flute Cave is located in the northwestern suburbs of Guilin, 5 kilometers from the city center. It is a scenic area primarily known for its cave tours, complemented by the surrounding landscape of mountains and countryside.

The cave extends 240 meters deep and offers a tour path of 500 meters. Inside, you can marvel at an array of magnificent and intricate stalactites, stalagmites, stone pillars, stone curtains, and stone flowers. These formations, illuminated by colorful lights, create dazzling scenes such as Panlong Pagoda, Primitive Forest, Crystal Palace, and Huaguo Mountain. The spectacular and enchanting views will give you an otherworldly experience, earning the cave "Palace of Natural Art."

Reed Flute Cave has a long history, with scholars and poets exploring and leaving their marks since the Tang Dynasty. The scenic area preserves numerous ancient cliff inscriptions and poems, showcasing the charm of traditional Chinese culture.

  • Address: No. 1, Lusi Road, Guilin
  • Open Hours: 09:00 AM - 05:00 PM
  • Tour Length: 1-2 hours

Top 3: Sun and Moon Pagodas

Sun and Moon Pagodas GuilinSun and Moon Pagodas

The Sun and Moon Pagodas in Guilin are renowned as the tallest copper pagodas in the world, making themselves a spectacular night view spot for tourists, located in the central area of Guilin City.

The Sun Pagoda, standing 41 meters high with nine storeys, is entirely decorated with pure copper, using 350 tons of copper. It gleams brilliantly and is equipped with an elevator for visitors. This copper pagoda holds three world records: the tallest copper pagoda, the tallest copper building, and the tallest pagoda in water. The Moon Pagoda is 35 meters high with seven storeys which is made of glaze. Each storey features intricately carved and painted doors and windows, symbolizing different themes rich in traditional Chinese flavor. Inside the underground palace of the Moon Pagoda, there is a large mural of a Ming Dynasty blue and white porcelain plum vase from Guilin. Also, the Sun and Moon Pagodas are connected by a 10-meter underwater tunnel at the lake's bottom, and become a prime location for appreciating the essence of Guilin's urban beauty.

  • Address: No. 10 Wenming Road, Xiangshan District, Guilin
  • Open Hours: 08:00 AM - 10:00 PM
  • Tour Length: 1-2 hours

Top 4: Longji Terraces and Minority Villages

Longji Terraces GuilinLongji Terraces

The Longji Terraces are located on the Longji Mountain in Heping Town, in the southeast of Longsheng County, Guilin. There are 27 kilometers from Longsheng County and 80 kilometers from Guilin. The scenic area covers 66 square kilometers, with the terraces situated at elevations ranging from 300 to 1100 meters. The slopes mostly range from 26 to 35 degrees, with a maximum slope of 50 degrees.

The Longji Terraces are celebrated as the "Crown of Terraces in the World" and are renowned both domestically and internationally for their majestic presence, flowing lines, and unique folk customs. With nearly 700 years of history, the terraces combine a long historical heritage with rich ethnic culture, making them a scenic area that integrates natural and cultural landscapes of minority groups. The scenic area includes two main sections: the Ping'an Terraces and the Jinkeng Terraces, which are located to the north and south respectively, creating a stunning complementary display. The beauty of the Longji Terraces changes with the seasons, offering unique views in each.

The Longji Terraces are inhabited by the Zhuang and Yao ethnic groups, with the Zhuang people being the majority. The area showcases the distinctive ethnic customs and traditional culture of these groups. Their language, clothing, architecture, and folk festivals maintain an authentic and pristine ethnic atmosphere, earning the terraces the reputation of a living encyclopedia of Zhuang and Yao culture.

  • Address: Heping Town, Longsheng County, Guilin
  • Open Hours: 00:00 AM - 12:00 PM
  • Tour Length: 1-2 days

Top 5: Yulong River

Yulong RiverYulong River, Guilin

The Yulong River is the longest tributary of the Li River within Yangshuo, stretching 43.5 kilometers with a drainage area of 158.47 square kilometers. It flows through five townships—Jinbao, Putao, Baisha, Yangshuo, Gaotian and more than 20 villages, earning it the nickname "Little Li River". Particularly voyage is the 15.36-kilometer stretch from Yulong Bridge to Gongnong Bridge, with a width of 38 to 61 meters and a depth of 0.5 to 2 meters. The water is clear year-round and flows gently, featuring 28 weirs and over a hundred scenic spots. The entire Yulong River scenic area is free of modern buildings, artificial modifications, and urban noise, maintaining a pristine, natural, and ancient purity, making it the largest natural landscape park in the Guilin area.

The Yulong River is distinguished by its untouched natural scenery and historical sites, such as Xian'gui Bridge, the oldest bridge in Guangxi; Yulong Bridge, the largest single-arch stone bridge in Guangxi; and Fuli Bridge, the roundest single-arch stone bridge in Yangshuo. These attractions not only show the natural beauty of the Yulong River but also reflect its rich historical and cultural heritage.

  • Address: Yulong Village, Baisha Town, Yangshuo County, Guilin
  • Open Hours: 08:00 AM - 05:00 PM
  • Tour Length: 2-3 hours

Top 6: Xianggong Hill

Xianggong HillXianggong Hill

Xianggong Hill is located on the west bank of the Li River in Xingping Town, Yangshuo County, between the scenic spots of Huangbu Beach and Nine Horse Mountain, about 28 kilometers from Yangshuo. From the top of Xianggong Hill, you can enjoy a panoramic view of the neatly arranged peaks, with the clear Li River winding through the embrace of the mountains.

The light and shadow, sunrise, and colorful clouds at Xianggong Hill have attracted numerous photographers and photography enthusiasts. Works photographed by Guilin photographers here have won the Bronze Award at the 10th China International Photography Art Exhibition, making Xianggong Hill a must-visit place for photography in Guilin. The best seasons for photography at Xianggong Hill are from April to August, during which you can capture the beautiful scenes of rolling clouds and sunrise rays. In mid-October, when the sun is positioned above the peaks on the right bank of the Li River, it is also a good time to capture the sharp light and shadow of the mountain peaks during sunrise. In addition, the observation deck of Xianggong Hill faces east, making it ideal for viewing sunrise, thus becoming a sacred place for sunrise watching.

  • Address: Putao Town, Yangshuo County, Guilin
  • Open Hours: 06:00 AM - 06:00 PM
  • Tour Length: 0.5-1 hours

Top 7: Elephant Trunk Hill

Elephant Trunk Hill, originally named Li Hill, is located at the confluence of the Taohua River and the Li River in Guilin. The hill is named for its resemblance to a giant elephant drinking from the Li River with its trunk, and it is considered a symbol of Guilin's landscape.

Elephant Trunk Hill is not only the emblematic hill of Guilin but also a landmark of Guilin tourism. Between the elephant's trunk and legs is a round cave with an area of about 150 square meters, through which the river flows, creating the extraordinary sight known as "Elephant Hill and Water-Moon". The main attractions of Elephant Trunk Hill include Water-Moon Cave, Elephant Eye Rock, Puxian Pagoda, Yunfeng Temple, and the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom Revolutionary Relics Exhibition Hall within the temple.

The scenic spots of Elephant Trunk Hill feature not only natural landscapes but also numerous cliff inscriptions and historical relics. Water Moon Cave and the east cliff facing the river preserve 56 cliff inscriptions, which are designated as key cultural relics under protection in Guangxi.

  • Address: No. 1 Binjiang Road, Xiangshan District, Guilin
  • Open Hours: Peak season 06:30 AM - 07:00 PM/Low season 07:00 AM - 06:30 PM
  • Tour Length: 1-2 hours

Top 8: West Street

West StreetWest Street, Yangshuo

West Street in Yangshuo is a pedestrian street located in Yangshuo County, Guilin. Situated in the center of Yangshuo Ancient Town, it is approximately 8 meters wide and nearly 800 meters long, running roughly east-west from Binjiang Road in the east to Pantao Road in the west, intersecting with Xianqian Street and Chengzhong Road in the middle. With a history of over 1400 years, it is the oldest and most prosperous street in Yangshuo, and one of the key tourist attractions.

West Street boasts a long history, with well-preserved ancient buildings including Ming dynasty city walls, stone carvings, ancient temples, pavilions, former residences of famous figures, and memorial halls. It was a venue for speeches by Sun Yat-sen, and the renowned artist Xu Beihong once lived here. Leaders from over 150 countries have left their footprints here. The prosperity of West Street began in the late Qing dynasty and early Republic of China era. In the 1990s, after foreigners were allowed to freely enter and leave Yangshuo, the landscape and rock climbing attracted many foreigners to settle here, hence it is also known as "Foreigners' Street". The road surface of West Street is paved with locally produced marble, while the buildings along the street still retain the architectural style of the Ming and Qing dynasties of northern Guangxi, featuring blue tiles, white walls, overhanging eaves and red windows.

  • Address: Yangshuo County, Guilin
  • Open Hours: 00:00 AM - 12:00 PM
  • Tour Length: 2-3 hours

Top 9: Xingping Ancient Town

Xingping Ancient TownXingping Ancient Town

Xingping Town is located in the northeast of Yangshuo, 25 kilometers away from the county. Nestled among mountains and rivers, Xingping is a place of picturesque beauty with its whitewashed walls, black tiles, and stone-paved alleys, making it one of the most beautiful ancient towns along the Li River.

The attractions of Xingping Ancient Town include the Xiping County Site and Qianyuan Bridge, which not only showcase the historical and cultural heritage but also serve as important avenues for tourists to learn about the history of Xingping Ancient Town. Although the ancient town is not large in scale, it still preserves numerous cultural relics and historical sites, mainly concentrated in Xingping Ancient Street and a fishing village about 2 kilometers away from the town, maintaining the original historical environment and style. There are also some small shops selling local specialties in the ancient town, where you can experience the charm of long old streets and deep ancient alleys while strolling around.

  • Address: No. 23 Rongtan Street, Xingping Town, Yangshuo County, Guilin
  • Open Hours: 01:00 PM - 04:30 PM
  • Tour Length: 2-3 hours

Top 10: Fuli Ancient Town

Fuli Ancient TownFuli Ancient Town

Fuli Ancient Town is located in the eastern of Yangshuo County, Guilin, 8 kilometers from the county seat. The Guilin-Wuzhou Highway runs east-west, while the Li River's runs north-south, making transportation by both water and land convenient. With a history of over 1000 years, the town boasts magnificent landscapes and unique culture.

Fuli Ancient Town is renowned as the "Hometown of Chinese Painted Fans". With over a thousand years of history, the farmers of Fuli Town have developed the small folding fans used by literati into large craft fans measuring up to one meter in length. These fans are adorned with exquisite landscape paintings, enhancing their artistic value and becoming distinctive tourism handicrafts of Yangshuo. You can witness craftsmen creating painted fans on-site here. They use local bamboo from the riverside as fan frames and unique cotton paper as fan surfaces, onto which they manually paint scenes of Guilin landscapes or various flora and fauna.

  • Address: No. 168, Zhengdong Street, Fuli Town, Yangshuo County, Guilin
  • Open Hours: 00:00 AM - 12:00 PM
  • Tour Length: 1-2 hours
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Lenn Liu

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