Li River, Guilin

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Guilin can be regarded as 'Paradise on Earth' in view of its fascinating natural beauty. It is famous for its picturesque Karst landscape, which the Li River cruise highlights. A leisurely trip through the countryside of Yangshuo adds a different flavor. From cruising to hiking, our private Guilin tours offer clients the possibility to travel in a variety of ways.
How to plan my Guilin trip?
3 Days
Li River Cruise & Guilin City

4-5 Days
+Yangshuo Countryside
+Rice Terraces in Longsheng
+Daxu Ancient Town

6 Days or more
+More time in Yangshuo
+Extension to Sanjiang

Best Guilin Tours

Tailor Your Guilin Private Tour

Guilin Tour Planning

When is the best time to visit Guilin?

In general, Guilin is a good place for a vacation in all seasons as its year-round average temperature is 19 C (66 F).

Best time to visit the area: April to October. In this timeframe, the charming scenery of green hills and clear waters are most impressive for visitors.

Travel from November to March the next year: The tour prices are cheaper. At the same time, one can enjoy sightseeing without interference by massive crowds.

Time to avoid: Try to steer clear of the Chinese National Day Holiday from October 1st to 7th, when people are hustling and bustling everywhere.

Will my guide be with me on the cruise ship? What is the luggage arrangement?

Yes, in your private tour packages your guide will escort you on the Li River cruise journey. He/she will tell you interesting descriptive names and legendary stories of those major attractions along the river when on board. Let your imagination merge with the guide's explanation. You will find the mystical peaks become lifelike.

If you are scheduled to stay overnight in Yangshuo, your luggage will be delivered to Yangshuo by your driver who goes to Yangshuo overland.

What kind of boat will we take for the Li River Cruise tour?

There are both 3-star and 4-star boats available for the Li River Cruise tour. We usually recommend the 3-star boat since it is favored by the majority. But if you are interested in the 4-star boat, we are also ready to book it for you. Below are key features of the two kinds of boats.

The 3-star boat has a capacity of 98-110 people. All the seats are priced the same reasonably, and the ticket fee includes a simple lunch box with free tea. As you will spend most of the time sightseeing on the top deck of the boat, we believe the 3-star one is quite adequate for a short 4-hour journey.

The 4-star boat has a capacity of 75-80 people with a bit more spacious seats. The ticket price varies according to the seats, which is about USD30 to USD50 per person higher than that of the 3-star. A Chinese buffet lunch is served. Clients who demand for better facilities may consider this kind of boat.

Can I take a bamboo raft on the Li River?

Frankly speaking, we do not recommend the Li River bamboo rafting to our clients in Guilin itinerary for the following reasons.

First of all, the bamboo rafts are not operated under standardized management, so the service of the boatmen cannot be guaranteed. Secondly, the raft is not poled by the boatman in the traditional way, but driven by an outboard motor, which is a bit noisy. Thirdly, it is usually quite small, without a restroom, not to mention food, drinks or air-conditioning on board. Fourthly, when the weather is not good, the bamboo rafting is easily subject to cancellation at very short notice. Therefore, we suggest you take the river cruise instead of bamboo rafting for a smooth and safe trip.

Can I apply for the 72-hour visa-free or 144-hour visa-free transit for a Guilin tour?

Yes, you can apply for the 72-hour visa-free transit for a basic Guilin tour as long as you are qualified to the relevant prerequisites. You can click here to read more details.

Tour groups from 10 ASEAN countries can be granted a visa-free stay up to 144 hours. They should be received at Guilin Liangjiang Airport by local travel agencies. During the six days, all members cannot leave the city. In addition, tour groups using this visa exemption policy shall exit from Liangjiang Airport only.

When is the best time to visit the Dragon's Backbone Rice Terraces?

Generally speaking, May, June, September and October are the best months to visit the Dragon's Backbone Rice Terraces.

From May to June, you can see the terraced fields filled with water glistening like mirrors in the sunlight, and see traditional farmers busily transplanting rice seedlings.

When the autumn harvest season comes in end of September and the beginning of October, everywhere you look are terraces with golden rice undulating in the breeze. As it is too crowded during the National Holiday, the end of September is considered to be the best time to visit the rice terraces.

In other months of the year, the Dragon's Backbone Rice Terraces still offer spectacular scenery and unique ethnic customs.

Can I stay overnight in Longsheng to explore the Dragon's Backbone Rice Terraces in more depth? How are accommodations there?

Yes, you are able to stay overnight at Ping'an Zhuang Village in Longsheng. Since it is in the mountainous area, there are mainly guesthouses with basic necessities for travelers. We usually book the well-regarded Ping An Guesthouse for clients. For those looking for better accommodations, the only luxury boutique Li An Lodge can meet your requirements, but its room rate is a bit higher.
  • Customer Reviews
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    4.778 Reviews
    Katrina
    Australia
    Posted on May 24, 2020
    The Guilin tour was very leisurely and not in a hurry. It was very suitable for a big family with children. Since I traveled with my young daughter, the guide took much special care of us. Every day I received a morning call from our considerate guide. She sometimes helped me look after my kid so that I could enjoy myself during the trip. Very friendly, straightforward and devoted to providing particular & interesting explanations. Special thanks to our driver. I was a bit carsick. He drove steadily and slowly, but the whole way didn’t delay our journey. He also prepared for me motion sickness medicine. Although I brought my own medicine, I was very grateful to him! ... More
    Luma
    Posted on May 10, 2020
    I was very satisfied with my 4-day Guilin tour to Yangshuo. The itinerary was well arranged, and Shirley always offered us detailed explanations of each attraction with great warmth. And she was also very organized. We almost finished the day trip early and left enough time to explore Guilin’s nightlife freely. Shirley Tang was really experienced, and it was absolutely a fantastic experience with her guidance.
    Felipe
    Canada
    Posted on April 26, 2020
    All of the sights planned in our itinerary were visited smoothly. The 2 days Guilin tour enriched greatly our travel experience of China. The Li River held beautiful natural appearances of hills and limpid water, which was a big feast for our eyes. Also, the Yangshuo rural scenery was enchanting. At the Fuli Town we experienced the life of local farmers and a farm tractor. Quite interesting!

    The Green Lotus Hotel in Guilin was super excellent, top-notch service, convenient traffic, and complete facilities. High recommended! ... More
    Willie Luma
    Australia
    Posted on April 14, 2020
    The 3 days Guilin tour gave me a wonderful experience in Guilin. The beautiful sight and considerate tour guide made my trip amazing. Thanks a lot!
    Emilie
    USA
    Posted on April 01, 2020
    Our Guilin one day tour to Longji Terrace Fields had come to a successful end! Guilin possessed the best natural landscape in China, and indeed my parents and children all had an enjoyable time. Here, I would like to thank our excellent guide Rose, who was really a professional tour guide with an outgoing personality, for her thoughtful arrangements of our itinerary. The whole journey was full of laughter and joy. With this happy travel experience, we will continue to book a China tour on TCG next time. ... More
    Manson
    USA
    Posted on March 13, 2020
    Great arrangements of the 4 days Guilin tours! The Dragon's Backbone Rice Terraces were truly beautiful, showing us the wisdom of nature and ancient Chinese people. We also visited a village of an ethnic minority to learn their unique ethnic customs. The guide was very familiar with the facts of Guilin’s scenic spots and shared a lot with us. He was also considerate to remind us of the attention matters and patient to wait for the members with babies. It was an impressive trip to Guilin!
    Dudely
    New Zealand
    Posted on March 08, 2020
    Our families were all very satisfied with this 6-day Guilin tour to Longsheng & Yangshuo! The itinerary was reasonable and both the hotels and cars were perfectly arranged as we asked! The meals were very much to our tastes and my kid loved the small cakes very much. Special thanks to the drivers for their punctual attitude and steady drives!
    Jerry
    Australia
    Posted on February 21, 2020
    The 5 days Guilin tour in last May was satisfactory. My kids had a great time and we enjoyed very comfortable hotels. Rex was a fantastic guide who shared with us lots of local customs and was enthusiastic to explain the backgrounds of the hills. The whole journey was rich but not too tired. The beauty of the terrace fields made us relaxed :)
    Dennis
    Australia
    Posted on February 09, 2020
    The one day Li River cruise from Guilin to Yangshuo was definitely a lifetime travel experience in China! The guide and group members were enthusiastic and we got along well with each other. The Guilin’s scenery is sure to be the best in China and the Yangshuo’s scenery tops in Guilin. Through the wonderful explanations of our exceptional guide, we learned a lot about the characteristics of Guilin’s landscape and experienced local cultural customs.
    Eric House
    USA
    Posted on January 30, 2020
    We had a really great time in Guilin! We were quite satisfied with the accommodation and meals. The 3-day private Guilin tour itinerary was not tight but rich!

    It was a pity that we didn’t see the beautiful scenery of the mountains reflected in Li River because of the lack of rain. We also visited the famous sights, like Seven Star Park and Elephant Trunk Hill. Good attractions and amazing travel experience in Guilin!
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