Life on the Yulong River 遇龙河
Life on the Yulong River almost seems frozen in time. Unlike the busy Li River, shown above, the Yulong has no motorised vehicles. This has helped create the biggest tourist attraction of the area, rafting. You can pay for a ride and drift down river for up to 6 hours! When the day draws to a close and tourists disappear, you'll find the locals travelling home or fishing for the last catch of the day, all still on the traditional bamboo rafts. It's beautiful.
*Remember you can click on any image to find it in store.
We rented bikes each day and slowly made our way down the riverside path towards Fuli Bridge, exploring every path and track we came across. It was so peaceful. We passed by as local fisherman laid their nets and farmers ploughed the land. As the rest of the world was speeding by it felt as though nothing had changed in a thousand years in Yangshuo.
As we made our way further downriver the waters were often low and slow enough to cross over on foot. If you venture out early in the morning you can watch as the farmers lead their cattle across these natural bridges.
As the day drew to a close we sat by the rivers edge and watched fish jumping out of the water trying to catch flies. The braver ones even trying to catch dragon flies!
By this point, most tourists have headed back to their hotels, to save walking back in the dark, and it feels more remote than ever. With only the sound of the birds singing and the river flowing for company, it was one of the most peaceful moments of our time in China.
We waited out for sunset after having a week of cloudy and overcast skies and it was more than worth it. It's difficult to put into words how beautiful the sky became so I'll let the photos describe it for me!
Instead of tourists in bright orange life jackets we had bright orange skies and local kids playing on the rafts as they crossed the river to go to the shop on the other side.
They paddled back with a small bag of snacks and drinks. It was amazing to see what we take for granted growing up. What was so normal for them was so out of this world for us.
This is life on the Yulong river.
Other places to visit around the Yulong River...
There is so much to see and do in Yangshuo. Here are a few of my other favourites that we were able to visit during our time there.
7-Star Tea Plantation
Fuli Ancient Village
This sadly concludes our time in China. It was quite an experience! From the peaks of Huangshan to the endless Great Wall, all the way to the peaceful Yulong River. China has a lot to offer. It's not just big cities and busy streets, although there is a lot of that. And even though it can get incredibly crowded, even deep in the mountains, there is plenty of opportunity to find space all to yourself. I hope I was able to change your mind about this place and maybe surprise you with some of it's beauty, it sure surprised us!