Two hours from Guilin is Longsheng, surrounded on all four sides by forested mountains. With four ethnic minorities, Longsheng is a vibrant cultural town and the place to pick up the little stones that are in bonsai pots, the trading of which was illegal until a few years ago.
However, the main attraction is the Dragon’s Backbone rice terraces, covering 66 square kilometres. Beginning at the base of Mount Longji, the verdant green rice fields coil around the steep mountain, layer upon layer, climbing to its summit. Where there is soil a terrace has been made. Resembling a contour map, the terraces were started back in the Yuan Dynasty by the Zhuang people and finally completed in the Qing Dynasty.
Hike along the stone paths that are no more than a metre wide for a couple of hours and you will have panoramic views of the ribbon-like terraces with picturesque valleys and meandering streams below. It also gives you the chance to see the different traditional costumes as the local women work the fields – quite a colourful sight. The whole area changes with the seasons, with snow covering the terraces in winter, the rice fields a rich green in summer, and a golden hue in autumn at the time of harvest.
Longsheng and Dragon's Backbone is near Yangshuo. Listed below are some of our Holidays with Yangshuo
Neatly dividing China into north and south, the 6340km-long Yangtze River is the third longest river in the world, winding ...