The charm and fabulous exploration opportunities have put Guilin definitely on the tourism map. Outside its economic importance as the capital of the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, the region around Guilin is blessed with natural wonders, often not comparable with any other destination in vast China and that should say enough about what to expect when finding yourself in Guilin. An extraordinary experience to fill just only half a day will last a lifetime. A morning where we travel both in the sunlight as well as entering sun-deprived region of Guilin, yet where light has played an important role in an enlightened atmosphere.
Guilin itself is situated on the western banks of the Li River and has some of the most spectacular karst scenery in the world. It is because of its location that natural treasures are within easy reach of your booked hotel. An early morning departure from your hotel, accompanied by a professional, English speaking guide and driver, and two of Guilin recognizable sites, created by the hands of Mother Nature, will pass the revue. We start the morning at the Reed Flute Cave, the most impressive karst cave surrounding Guilin. Not only is it the largest, but also its stunning array of stalactites and stalagmites, makes this cave a spectacular sight, reminiscent of the most sight-worthy cathedral or palatial hall. Named after the verdantly-green reeds that grow just outside the entrance and said to be the perfect base material to make melodious flutes and pipes, the real treasure lies when you venture into the deeper sections of the 240-metre cave. Inside this water-eroded cave is a wondrous world of stone pillars, curtains and myriad other rock formations created by carbonate deposition over millions of years.
Next, the natural symbol of Guilin again is something that has been shaped by nature; the shape of the hill resembles a huge elephant drinking water from the river with its trunk, hence the name Elephant Trunk Hill certainly applies. Right between the trunk and the legs is a semi-round cave penetrated by water called the Water Moon Cave (or Shui Yue in Mandarin). Various stories do exist about how this natural phenomenon came to its existence but weâd prefer not to go into further details: your guide for this morning tour will reveal some of the myths surrounding the Elephant Trunk Hill. He/she may also recommend you to come back late at night, when the moon is at its fullest, as the scenery here will be quite an astonishing one.
Sadly, the morning comes to an end and we drive you comfortably back to your Guilin hotel, just before lunch time.