Chinese Culture 


 Chinese Culture






The Land Of China -- Explore by Province


Terraced Fields in Guangxi
Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region is in the west part of South China. Its capital is the city of Nanning. The entire region is surrounded by mountains while the central part is covered with hills and plains. Karst geomorphy (areas of irregular limestone formations in which erosion has produced fissures, sinkholes, underground streams, and caverns) is wide-spread in the region, creating numerous natural scenic spots that inspired such eulogies as "Guilin, the most beautiful spot in the world" and "Yangshuo, the best of Guilin". Major tourist attractions are Guilin, the Li River, the West Hills in Guiping, Huashan, and the Silver Beach in Beihai. This is a region where many ethnic groups inhabit. People in the region are warm and friendly, and customs and habits show great versatility. It is a very popular destination for tourists from home and abroad.

Capital city, Nanning (Southern Peace), was founded in 214 B.C. The Guangxi Museum displays botanical and zoological specimens, historical relics, and Taiping history. It also boasts the largest collection of bronze drums (over 300) in China. South Lake Park has 1200 varieties of medicinal herbs, plus orchids and bonsai. The Yiling Cave, much like a Guilin cave, has colored lights to highlight unique rock formations that look like lions, hens, and vegetables.

A visit to a minority village or to the Institute of Nationalities will help visitors see art, music, dances of various nationalities. The minorities have their own colorful festivals as they sing songs, hold dragon boat races, dance, or light firecrackers on these occasions. It is fascinating to watch or participate in these intriguing activities. One of these villages, Jintian Village, is where Taiping Heavenly Kingom originated. It is the most extensive peasant uprising in Chinese history.

Liuzhou, a city immediately west of the Guangdong province, was founded in 111 B.C. It is blessed by colorful minorities, karst caves and hills. The Liu Marquis Temple and Tomb was built in honor of Liu Zongyuan, a famous Tang writer and for four years provincial governor. In the Bai Lain Cave, a Liujiang Man lived 20,000 -30,000 years ago.

the Big Dragon Pool
The Big Dragon Pool stretches four km south of Liuzhou City. Mythical legends say that a divine dragon hides in the pool who can bring on thunder and cause rain! As such, it is also called the Thunder Tomb. It was here that the Tang Dynasty poet, Liu Zongyuan, used to pray for rain on behalf of the people for richer harvests. Big Dragon Pool contains a scenic area of about one square kilometer. Clear waters run day and night from and underground river and then sink below and flow away. Behind the pool are seven peaks in a circle, known as "The Seven-lady Peaks." There are also small peaks, including Mirror Hill, Fort Hill, Goat Horn Hill and others. Overall, the Big Dragon Pool is a must see if you are visiting China.

Yufeng Hill shoots up like a fish, 88 meters high in Yufeng Park. It is said that the hill still has remains of the Third Sister Liu. A statue of her has been set up where she performed antiphonal singing and rose to heaven. Halfway up the mountain there are seven rock caves including the Arhat Cave, Carp Cave and others linked together. In the caves there are more than 50 small dragon pools running into the Liujiang River through rock crevices. Lu Yu, the Tang Dynasty scholar listed Big Dragon Pool as one of the world's most famous springs.

the Lijiang River
The Lijiang River rises from the Maoer Mountains northeast of Guilin. Winding its way through Guilin and Yangshuo down into the Xijiang River in Wuzhou, its course of 437 kilometers is flanked by green hills and beautiful scenery. A river cruise between Guilin and Yangshuo offers tourists a rare opportunity to enjoy the most magnificent scenery in China. Special attractions along the river are the Elephant Trunk Hill, Tunnel Hill, Pagoda Hill, Crown Hill, Yellow Cloth Hill, Nine-Horse Mural Hill, Embroidery Hill, and Green Lotus Peak. Traveling at different times and in different weather conditions offers kaleidoscopic views. The river makes one feel as if traveling in front of a huge traditional Chinese landscape painting. The Lijiang River cruise is a must for every tourist in Guilin.


Located 65 kilometers southeast of Guilin City is the county of Yangshuo. Surrounded by 10 peaks, the county looks like a green lotus. Houses are dotted among the rows of mountain peaks, and the scenery here is reputed to be Guilin's best. Each spot has its own unique characteristics. Yangshuo also offers another aspect of the karst landscape that seems to stretch forever. Well-known scenic attractions include Green Lotus Peak and Old Ferry Under the Banyan. To the north of Yangshuo is Xingping, a small city with a long history. During the Jin Dynasty (265-420), Xingping was a district capital. This peaceful and romantic spot is an ideal place to observe life in the country.

Zhongshan and Fuchuan counties, some 50 kilometers from Nanning, are inhabited by the Yao people who have kept their own work and living habits and their own language and customs. The landscape here varies from hills to karst and basins. Scenic spots include the ancient road of the Qin, carved rocks of the Ming and Qing Dynasties, Small Zhongshan Hill, the tombs of the Han Dynasty, and the ruins of ancient Fuchuan.

Guilin, City of Cassia Trees
"I often sent pictures of the hills of Guilin which I painted to friends back home, but few believed what they saw." The writer is Song-Dynasty scholar Fan Chengda, and his comments show that the scenery of Guilin has been attracting and astonishing visitors for many centuries. It has also been the inspiration for classical Chinese landscapes of fantastically shaped peaks, studded with pines and small pavilions that are partly shrouded in mist.

Guilin and the Lijiang River
People have summed up the special features of the scenery of Guilin in four major points: beautiful peaks; a crystal river; unique caves; and graceful rocks. The Lijiang River, which runs through the center of Guilin, is a complementary attraction to the peaks and a setting for displays of cormorant fishing. Fishermen on bamboo rafts use strong lights suspended over the water to attract the fish. The cormorants, which are tethered with rings around the base of their necks, catch the fish and then disgorge them for the fishermen. These shows are regular features of the high season along with riverboats for an evening's entertainment afloat.

The best hills for climbing are found in the north of the city. Fubo Hill rises from the banks of the river and offers superb views from its summit, while halfway up is a huge cooking pot and a bell weighing 2.5 tons. At the base of Fubo is the Returned Pearl Cave with 300 Buddhist carvings on its walls.

Sunset in Guilin
The Solitary Beauty Peak (Duxiu Feng) rises up in the middle of the city north of the Lijiang Hotel. It presents the observer with a wonderful natural theater with a change of colors which range from golden to purple in the mist of dawn or the glow of the setting sun. On Duxiu Feng's western slope is Nantian Men, Southern Celestial Gate. From there, one can enjoy a wonderful view of the city and its environment.

Reed Flute Cave (Ludi Yan) is located in the northwestern section of Guilin. It is 240 meters deep and is probably the largest and most magnificent cave in Guilin. Ludi Cao, reed grass, grows in front of the cave and can be used to make the most wonderful flutes. This is what gave the cave its name. It used to be a popular place for the local people to hide themselves in times of war or trouble. Situated at the southern foot of Guangming Hill, the cave is a huge and fantastic cavern eroded out of a karst formation. It is lined along its entire 500-meter zigzag length with stalactites and stalagmites in the shapes of agination forms. They include Shilin Zhaoxia (lion and forest under the glow of dawn), Gaoxia Feibo, (flying waterfall from the high gorge), Primitive Forest, Crystal Palace, Xiongshi Songke and others. Beautiful, colourful, and fantastic, the cave has been as widely acclaimed as an "Art Gallery of Nature."

Seven Star Park is one of Guilin's most important sights on the Lijiang's west bank. The seven stars symbolize the seven mountains around which the park grounds were laid out. The mountains are arranged in the order of the seven stars in the Big Dipper. The four northern mountains make up Putuo Shan while the remaining three southern mountains form Yueya Shan. Many large caves are located on Putuo Shan. Qixing Yan, Seven Star Cave, is one of these. The Seven Star Cave is located on the western slope of Putuo Mountain in Guilin city. It is the largest and most fascinating cave in Guilin and contains three layers. The upper layer is roughly 8-12 meters higher than the middle one. There is a 1,000-meter-long tunnel that is a gallery of stalactites and stalagmites of the most spectacular shapes and forms. The cave became a tourist attraction as early as the Sui and Tang dynasties (518-907 AD). Over the centuries, many poems and other inscriptions have been left behind on its interior walls by scholars.

Elephant Trunk Hill
At the confluence of Lijiang River and Yangjiang River lies the Elephant Trunk Hill. A hole in the hill gives the appearance of an elephant sipping water with its trunk and is why it was named the Elephant Trunk Hill. Between the trunk and the body, there is a round-shaped space known as the Water-Moon Arch. Under a moonlit night, looking at its silhoutte from a small boat provides a fantastic picture. A narrow path winding leads to the top of the hill where the Samantabhadra Tower stands. Built in the Ming Dynasty of solid brick, its core is round like a bottle or a sword handle and is why it is called the Precious Bottle Tower or the Sword Handle Tower. On the rock walls of the Water-Moon Cave, more than 50 sculptures have been left behind through the ages.