Jinkeng Terraced Fields
Jinkeng by literal meaning is golden crater for its rich mineral resources of gold. Covering more than 10 square kilometers (2,470 acres), the rice terraces stretches layer upon layer, coiling around from the mountain feet to tops. It is not only a paradise photographers yearn for, but also a world wonder for tourists.
Best Points to View Jinkeng Terraced Fields in Dazhai Village
No.1 Viewpoint - Xishan Shaoyue / West Hill Music
Xishan Shaoyue is the highest viewing platform in Jinkeng Rice Terraces. One can have a panoramic view of the beautiful scenery of rice terraces. It is also a great place to appreciate the sunrise. Many great photos are shoot here. A 2-hour hiking will bring you here from the Dazhai Village.
No.2 Viewpoint - Large-scale Thousand-layer Terraces
Standing on this viewing platform, visitors can see such a spectacle of thousand-layer terraces extending and stretching from the mountain foot up to top, which seems very much like a ladder leading to the sky. Apart from this, one can also see Yao people’s wooden-structured stilt houses inlaying the foot of the mountain. A hiking from the Dazhai Village to this viewpoint takes about an hour.
No.3 Viewpoint - Golden Buddha Summit
Golden Buddha Summit is named so as the terraces look like a Buddha if seeing from the Tiantou Village on the opposite hill, especially when the ripe rice covers the mountain. It is also the best site to view sunset. There are cable cars taking passengers to the No.3 Viewpoint.
Best Time to Visit - April to October
During the spring ploughing season from around middle April to June, the terraces are filled with water, thus thousands of “water mirrors” are naturally formed. During this season, you can appreciate the reflection of blue sky and floating clouds, sometimes rosy clouds on the surface of the water. In July and August, the terraces are covered by green blankets. When the rice is ripe in September and October, golden fields lie layers upon layers, like an oil painting.
Red Yao - Dwellers of Dazhai Village
Red Yao is a branch of Chinese minority Yao. It is called Red Yao as the girls wear red clothes mostly. For girls there, they have the custom of having long hair. Torch Festival, also called as Clothes Drying Festival, is a very important festival of which the importance is only next to the Chinese New Year for Red Yao people. It falls on 6th day of 6th lunar month. At that time, every household will take out their red clothes and put them either outside the window or on the string. And visitors can appreciate the exquisite traditional costumes of Yao people, especially that of girls. The colorful clothes, according to Yao people, symbolize the good fortune and happy life. In the evening, one can take part in the grand bonfire party, singing and dancing with the local Yao people.
How did Jinkeng Terraced Fields come into being?
The forefathers of Minority Yao in Jinkeng, originally migrated from Dongting, Hunan Province, brought advanced techniques of rice planting when they first stepped into this barren areas. With mountains surrounded from all sides, the Dazhai Village seemed being completely isolated from the outside world. In order to survive, the industrious and intelligent ancestors dig up terraces on the hills and planted rice to feed their offspring. The earliest terraced fields were reclaimed more than 700 hundred years ago. As time went by, the terraced fields were continuously developed, and forming such a scale as we can see now, which fully expresses the hard work and dedication of ancient Chinese people.
How to Get to Dazhai Village
1. From Ping’an Village
Since there is no direct bus to Jinkeng, so we recommend you to take a private car, which costs about RMB 80 and takes about 50 minutes. If you want to explore more beautiful scenery of terraced fields, a hiking tour from Ping’an Village to Jinkeng area is highly recommended. The total journey takes about 4 - 4.5 hours.
2. Guiling to Dazhai Direct Coach
There are direct coaches to Jinkeng Dazhai at Guilin Qintan Bus Terminal in the downtown area. The departure time is 8:30, 10:00, 12:00, 13:00, and 15:00. It takes about RMB 50 and 3 hours to get there.
Dazhai Cable Cars
Dazhai cable cars connect Dazhai Village at the lower mountain and No.3 viewing point in the Golden Buddha Summit. Duration is about 20 minutes and ticket price is CNY60 for a single trip and CNY110 for a round-trip.
The entrance fee of Jinkeng Terrace Fields is included in the tickets of Longji Rice Terraces, which is CNY 80 per person.