Travel Guide Asia China Guangxi Yangshuo



Hills in Yangshuo

Hills in Yangshuo

© sj_mb

Yangshuo (阳朔) is a small town in Guangxi, China, sandwiched in between hundreds of stunning karst peaks making this town truly beautiful. The rock formation starts further south in Laos and Vietnam, going through the stunning Halong Bay, then continues further north into Guizhou.

Until about 10 years ago, Yangshuo was a sleepy little village next to the Li River. Yangshuo’s big brother Guilin gained most of the fame during history and Chinese tourist flocked to Guilin over looking the neighboring, prettier town of Yangshuo for centuries. Foreign tourists started to go to Yangshuo in order to avoid the crowds in Guilin and to be closer to nature. This is because Guilin had exploded in size after becoming an industrial town for the northern area of the province.

More recently, Yangshuo has become a major backpacker hangout to rival any backpacker town in Southeast Asia. This is one of the few places in China where almost everyone speaks great English and reasonably priced foreign food is easy to find. This is slowly starting to change as more and more Chinese tourists have started to go to Yangshuo. Hopefully the backpacker vibe will remain strong in Yangshuo but with the fast pace in which everything moves in China nobody really knows.



Sights and Activities

Staring Through Moon Hill

Staring Through Moon Hill

© TulsaTrot

Most of the activities in Yangshuo revolve around the outdoors. There is great biking, hiking and climbing in the area. There are also several excellent caves for any amateur to advance cave diver to enjoy.

Karst Landscape

The area around Yangshuo is renowned throughout China, if not the whole world, (even making it into the backdrop of Star Wars Episode 3), for its karst landscape where there are hundreds upon hundreds of limestone hills dotting the countryside. The beautiful scenery here is a common subject of Chinese paintings and the inspiration for poetry. There are several popular areas for karst landscape sight-seeing which can be covered by river cruises, bamboo-raft cruises, cycling, trekking and combinations of the various modes.

Yangdi-Xingping scenic area (catch a direct river cruise from Yangshuo or get to Yangdi (90 min, ¥8) and Xingping (45 min, ¥5.5) by minibus from Yangshuo bus terminal, or cycle out there and then take boats or rafts to reach the scenic area). This stretch along the Li River is probably the most renowned and popular. The traditional bamboo rafts along this stretch have been replaced by rafts made of plastic pipe with two stroke motors. The "raft experience" is now a boom industry and hundreds of these small rafts cruise this route when the big tour boats have passed. The rafts are safe and the better operators provide life jackets. There is also a 24 km (5 to 6 hours) track for easy hiking along the Li river.
Yulong River valley (turn west into a small road from the main Yangshuo bypass road just south of the Sinopec petrol station at the junction of Pantao Rd (there are road signs in Chinese). Or, use the road to Jinbao from Baisha town 9 km north of Yangshuo on the main road to Guilin. Minibuses from Yangshuo bus terminal to Jinbao go near Yulong village). The pretty valley is said to rival the Yangdi-Xingping stretch in terms of beauty. Besides rafting down the river on bamboo rafts, another popular way of seeing the valley is by cycling along riverside tracks. The journey will bring you through many farming villages and past several stone bridges across the river such as the Yulong Qiao and Fuli Qiao. Be warned though that the track is complicated and it is easy to get lost; using a local guide will ensure you stay on track.
Moon Hill (take a Gaotian minibus Yangshuo bus terminal; if you plan to cycle, Moon Hill is about 8 km south of Yangshuo on the road to Wuzhou). Another popular scenic spot south of town. The main attraction is a hill with a huge hole in the shape of a moon. The hills here can be climbed for spectacular vistas from the top. There is a ¥15 entry fee. (There is also another dirt trail to the right of the entrance; follow it left, hop over the barbed wire and follow the stone steps up to reach the main path for free.) It is not an incredibly long trek to the top but the gradient and strange angle of the steps can do something strange to your legs on the way down. The Moon Hill Cafe at the base of the hill sells fairly mediocre food at ridiculously high prices, and you may need something after the trek up and down. Alternatively there are a few other places to choose from in nearby Moon Hill Village, and plenty of hawkers selling cool drinks. If it is a slow day, don't be surprised if a hawker follows you up the mountain to make a sale when you are thirsty. The hawkers are mostly harmless old farm women, but they are aggressive. ¥5 is a fair price for two bottles of cold water. They will try to sell it for triple that price. On the road back to Yangshuo, not far from Moon Hill, is the 'Big Banyan Tree' scenic area. A ¥20 entry fee gets you into this popular park by the Yulong river, featuring a 1,400-year-old banyan tree. Be sure to use the official entrance (ticket offices at the front), as hawkers will attempt to lure you into an alternative entrance that is lined with dozens of souvenir stalls.
Assembling Dragon Cave (6 km south of Yangshuo. It is in between the Big Banyan Tree and the Moon Hill). The Karst cave was so named because the grotesque peaks outside the cave look like dragons among the clouds. Inside the Assembling Dragon Cave are beautiful sculptures of nature in the form of varied formations of stalactites and stalagmites. These formations are lit by colorful neon lights, together with sweet music in the background, making one feels like he/she is in the fairyland! The Magical Stone Palace is next to the exit of the Assembling Dragon Cave. The Magical Stone Palace is a big exhibition hall selling many kinds of stones to tourists.

Bamboo Raft Rides

One of the more popular activities for Chinese tourists is to ride bamboo rafts down dammed sections of creeks running among the karst peaks. The rafts occasionally hit concrete dams that are about a meter high and people help push the raft over them. Just make sure to lift your feet up if you don't want them to get wet as the raft slides to the next level on the creek.

Although this might seem a bit tacky, it can be fun. Enjoying the sun, looking at the karst peaks and enjoying a beer or two can be a lots of fun during a boat ride. It is also a good way to meet Chinese tourists and enjoy some towns that don't even have roads to them. Another good thing about the rafts is that most of the people guiding them and operating them are local farmers trying to make a little extra money.

Most local bike tours offer some sort of raft ride as part of the package. If you decide to raft the entire creek this can take several hours. Most people only do a 20 to 45-minute section with their bikes strapped to the back to the raft. Prices can vary wildly depending on the time of the year and section of the creek.

Rock Climbing

In Yangshuo rock climbing has become extremely popular in the last few years. The peaks in the country side offer great chances to climb and experience great beauty. Several companies,own and operated by westerners, have opened in the last few years to provide climbing gear and guides. There are over 200 routes that have been documented and number is growing daily. Most of the routes are single-pitched bolted climbing routes, while more and more multi-pitch sport routes are beginning to be created. There is also plenty of traditional climbing. It is best to go with a guide that knows the local area because it is very easy to get lost or to go onto someone's private land.

  • Black Rock Climbing organizes half/full day trips, as well as courses.
  • Karstclimber is a cafe, hotel and climb guiding centre.
  • Xclimber has many beginner and half day trips.
  • Spiderman Climbing provides good climbing trips and is located off of New West Street.

Bike Routes

  • Historic Bridges and Towns that can only be accessed by foot or bike.



Events and Festivals

China has three "Golden Week" holidays per year. People get a mandatory two or three days off work for each holiday, and workers' companies can grant them the rest of the week off, making each holiday a total of 7 days. As you can imagine, having almost 1.4 billion people with the same days off can make travelling at these times arduous to say the least.

Travelling during the Spring Festival/Chinese New Year is incredibly difficult. Chinese New Year is China's Christmas, so the millions of migrant workers and students flood back to their home towns. Everybody else takes the opportunity to spend their hong bao (gifts of money traditionally given at CNY) and go travelling. Most of the time, since you are only allowed to purchase train tickets 6 days in advance and must be present in the city of origin, sometimes only standing room tickets are available. Be aware! The Spring Festival is undoubtedly the busiest time for the Chinese transportation system. Flying will avoid the crowded trains, but book early and expect to pay higher prices. All the main tourist attractions will be crawling with tourists (worse than usual), so unless you like crowds, it's best to avoid it altogether.

Chinese New Year is based on the lunar calendar, so the date changes each year. The Chinese New Year/Spring Festival holiday is 7 days long and usually starts on New Year's Eve.

The two other national holidays are October 1st, National Day, celebrating the founding of the People's Republic of China and May 1st, which is International Labor Day. Almost all Chinese get the two holidays off and many take the opportunity to travel. If you want to avoid the crowds, fly, but it should get a lot less busy towards the end of the week.




Yangshuo can be hot and muggy in the summer (temperatures over 30 °C) and chilly in the winter (though rarely really cold). In general the best time to visit is in March, April, May or September, October, November, when weather is generally warm but showers are always possible.



Getting There

By Plane

Guilin Liangjiang International Airport (KWL) is the nearest airport to Yangshuo and is about 28 kilometres (17 miles) from Guilin. This medium size airport serves almost every major city in China, including Beijing, Shanghai Pudong International Airport and Guangzhou. It also has limited international service to Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Seoul, Taipei Hong Kong and Macau. The budget airline Air Asia has service to this airport (to/from Kuala Lumpur).

An airport shuttle operates non-stop between Guilin Airport and Yangshuo taking around 90 minutes. Tickets can be purchased in Guilin airport close to the arrivals exit. Buses leave from outside the airport and travel to the Yangshuo northern bus station. There are departures from Guilin Airport at 09:30, 11:00, 12:30, 14:00, 15:30, 16:30, 18:00, 20:00 and 22:30. Tickets cost ¥50 per person.

An easy but comparatively costly way to get to Yangshuo is by taxi. It is far better to have your pick-up arranged by your hotel as waiting taxi drivers at Guilin will overcharge you and drivers generally do not know anything else in Yangshuo than the bus station where they will drop you off and you need to arrange transportation from there onwards. Expect to pay between ¥260-400 depending on the vehicle, and depending on whether you take the G65 Baomao highway (additional ¥30 for toll fees but saves about half an hour). Taking the highway is much faster, less bumpy and better for your blood pressure as you will not have to watch as your driver plays chicken with oncoming traffic while passing all the transport trucks moving at 40 km/h on the regular road.

By Train

Yangshuo has no train station, however there are train stations close by.

The nearest railway station with the most train service is in Guilin. A direct overnight train from Shenzhen (on the Hong Kong border) operates to Guilin (12 hours). Some hotels will arrange pick up from the train station. Minibuses to Yangshuo conveniently depart from the square in front of Guilin railway station (¥18, 80–90 minutes). These buses are untrustworthy, known to scam many tourists and take a long time to make the journey as they constantly stop to gather more passengers. The safest and more ideal method of getting to Yangshuo is to ignore the bus touts and turn north (left from the station) and walk the 300 m to the main bus terminal. Here buses are properly ticketed, safe and direct(¥15, 50–60 minutes). *As of December 2018 this bus station is closed. Buses run from the new South station about 10km south.

GongCheng is a high speed railway station that opened in 2014. Now offering high speed trains to and from Guizhou, Guangdong and Shenzhen, it is become the most popular method of travelling to and from the Guangdong/Hong Kong region. Trains to and from Shenzhen now only take 3 hours. To travel from GongCheng Railway Station to Yangshuo, take the public bus to the GongCheng Bus Station (10 minutes) and the bus to Yangshuo (40 minutes).

XingPing has a high speed railway station and also operates trains to and from Guangdong.

Since XingPing town is part of Yangshuo County, thus you could call this high speed railway station is "Yangshuo" station. Which China Railway did the same:) By year 2019, that might be the best easy way to get in and out of YangShuo form other cities. And there is a bus stop right next to railway station that bring you in XingPing (15 mins.) or Yangshuo.

By Car

Many hotels and guesthouses in Guilin will provide drivers with cars to Yangshuo.

By Bus

The main bus station in Yangshuo is located just south of West Street and has a steady stream of buses going to the Guilin train station every day. If trying to get to Yangshuo the best way is to go to the parking lot in front of the Guilin train station, which has buses leaving every half hour starting at 6:00am and ending at 9:00pm. These buses are brand new and the ride is 14 RMB, although a little haggling could get you a slightly cheaper seat. Be prepared for some Hong Kong pop movies to kill the 1.5 bus ride. Stay on the bus untill arriving in the busstation unless you know where you are going and don't believe anybody who tells you otherwise (= hawks).

Express buses leave from the Guilin busstation, a 2-minute walk up the main road. They are usually less crowded and never stop on the way. Price is 15 RMB, although for some holidays they up the price a little. Go here if you want to feel safer with a lot of luggage or you want to be sure to be there in 1 to 1.5 hours, as local buses from the trainstation can be unpredictable if their business is slow.

There are also direct over night sleeper buses to and from Hong Kong, Nanning and Guangzhou. For some cities it is just easier to connect in Guilin.

By Boat

There are also boats that travel down the Li River from Guilin, slower and more expensive (¥400+) than buses, but a very scenic journey. You may be able to travel for about ¥100 by joining a tour group. You will pass some of China's most famous scenic views, including a mountain view that can be seen on all ¥20 bills. Do check with your travel agent or hotel which boat you will be on as standards can vary a lot. Ask for a picture to be sure it is what you had in mind. Do not go with the CITS travel agents that approach you just when you get off the train and will either overcharge or sell you devalued trips in their office inside the train station.

In the winter time, which is the dry season, the boats often only travel starting halfway down the Li River from Guilin. A tour company should inform you of this. It is still worth taking the journey. You will then travel part of the way by bus or private taxi, then join the boat where the water is deep enough (this may vary).

In case you do not come on a Li River cruise, numerous boat trips on motorized rafts can be booked anywhere in Yangshuo. It is also very nice to hike the most scenic part between Yangdi and Xing Ping.



Getting Around

Downtown Yangshuo on a lazy day

Downtown Yangshuo on a lazy day

© TulsaTrot

By Car/Motorbike

Motorbike rides are easy and cheap to hire anywhere in town.

By Taxi

Taxis in Yangshuo are very few compared to other bigger cities, because they are limited by the government. They are more expensive than elsewhere in China, and they will all refuse to use the meter if they have any; thus you have to bargain and agree to a price before getting on. Taxi drivers will ask you ¥25-30 for a ride within the town (from 100 m to 3 km), but, after bargaining, you can easily achieve a price of ¥10 for that distance.

There are numerous open air three wheel style taxis and motorbike taxis. Agree to a price before getting on and bargain hard. If you are staying outside of the main town, try to arrange transport in advance if you want to avoid haggling or being ripped off. Some hotels offer free or low-price shuttle services, and it is often a good ideal to take advantage of these services. For a trip about 5 km outside of town the various taxis (normal, three wheel, motorbike) will ask at least ¥35, but the final price can be lower after bargaining.

By Public Transport

Local buses serve some locations. From Yangshuo's bus terminal, minibuses (xiao mian bao, litt. little bread loaves) go to Gaotian (for Yueliang Shan/Moon Hill), Jinbao via Baisha (for Yulong Qiao/Dragon Bridge), Shazhi (for Fuli village), Xingping (for the Xingping-Yangdi scenic area) and further afield.

Climbers should look for the Gaotian minivan at the end of the row which leaves every 15 minutes - tell driver 'Banyan Tree' or 'Moon Hill' and they will stop for you. Get on bigger blue bus to Puyi (two buses down from Gaotian van) which leaves every half-hour for The Egg and White Mountain. The driver will know where to stop, don't sweat it. These rides are ¥3 each way, pay when getting off or when the girl comes around, and please have small bills or exact change. After climbing just go back to where you got dropped off and you'll be picked up shortly. Last returning bus picks up Egg climbers at 18:30.

By Foot

Walking is the best option for getting around. If your staying on New West Street everything you need is within walking distance. To get to some some of the further out tourist sights bikes are the best way.

By Bike

This tourist area was made for bike riders. Other then for river tours, which require a bus or car to get to, bikes are your best option. Renting a bike is very easy and many hotels include them for free. Most places will give you a basic map that will tell you were most of the sights are and how to get there. Although it can be easy to get lost biking around fields there are always farmers around to guide you back in the right direction. Hiring a guide for a day is not expensive and can be a good idea for the first day.




The night market used to be located near the bus station, now head into the markets across the road or down to Gui Hua Lu. There is quite a variety of food, much of it at low prices (although still more expensive than elsewhere in China). They even serve dog, rat, oysters, mussels, rabbit, duck, shrimp, frog, the local mud snails and a variety of other surprising dishes! Make sure to haggle. Take very good care of your belongings—there are some very accomplished sneak thieves and pickpockets specializing in wallets, phones and passports.

Try the local specialty of rice noodles in a steaming pot. Just watch out for the rat on a stick at the local night markets. Wood fired pizzas are the big rave around town. Just look for a popular restaurant and try one out. A couple of restaurants have truly amazing blue cheese pizza!

Yangshuo has a lot of restaurants but in this touristy place, prices tend to be more expensive. You can eat cheaply in the markets with the locals or you can try comfort food in many cafes. When you buy fish, the price on the menu is customarily quoted per 500g, called 斤 (jin). A larger fish may cost you well over ¥100. For 3-4 people, a fish with 2 jins (1 kg), along with 3-4 more other dishes, is usually enough. There are more than one species of fish cooked with beer. Each with its own unique texture and taste. For example, MaoGu fish (毛骨鱼) has the least amount of bones. The local cuisine can be spicy and contain MSG but you can request keeping them out. However, for big fans of chillies, local dining places, including an Indian restaurant, tend to assume westerners can't take any real spicy food no matter how you insist on it.

Many cafes in Yangshuo offer burgers, shepherd's pie, and a Western breakfast, however authentic western foods are still rare. The quality of Chinese foods in those western restaurants are hit or miss, sometimes regarded as "Chinese foods in a western style", a euphemism for weird tastes among local people. Prices in those places are also higher than average Chinese standard. ¥15-40 for a coffee, ¥40 for a pizza and ¥30 for a slice of cake is common. A general guideline is that the best Chinese restaurants do not serve Western food, the opposite counts too.

Most Chinese restaurants outside of West Street don't have either an English menu or English-speaking staff, but prices are often better than on the Street. Beer fish, carp or catfish cooked in beer sauce, is the most famous dish in Yangshuo. The price is quoted in Chinese jin (500g) and usually runs ¥20-50 per jin depending on the species of fish. Guilin Rice noodles, local white-color pasta made of rice, is breakfast and lunch dish that costs around ¥3-10.

The Alley Yangshuo Beer Bar & Restaurant on Gui Hua Rd. Open at 17:00. Serves mostly steaks, pizza, burgers and drinks. The steaks are great and Pizza, starting from around ¥30, is among the most authentic you can find in China. Burgers are delicious and they come with fries and a complimentary Liquan beer for ¥28-50.
Balcony Bar, Xianqian Jie. Fairly decent French food and crepe, movie every night at 21:00 and free internet.
Minority Cafe, Guihua Lu (A few doors down from Backstreet Café which is run by the same people). Friendly staff and tasty food with decent size portions. The burrito and the chocolate and banana pancake are particularly good. Wireless internet and two computers available for customers. Regular expat hangout. western food around ¥25, Gin and tonic ¥10, Beer ¥6.
Cafe China, on the corner of West Street and Xianqian Jie. Great coffee, great cheesecake, packed most nights, wireless internet, and good chocolate milkshake (though small). Brandy: ¥7.
Cafe del Moon, West St (near center of West Street). Breakfast here is excellent value if you are hungry or want a lot of coffee. Ghastly croissants but the rest is good. all-you-can-eat breakfast buffet: ¥32.
Cafe Too, 7 Cheng Zhong Rd. Has English books to read, buy or trade.
Green Lotus, 100 West St (next to Youth Hostel).
Dosa U.K., 110D Yang Guang, ☏ +1 89-3480-9877. 11:00-14:30, 17:30-22:30. Excellent, authentic home made South Indian food in brand new spot. Attentive service and very good prices. Kind of a hole in the wall and the decor is a bit over the top. Menu is limited but has the South Indian basics and a very good crispy dosa. cheap.
Indian Restaurant, Guihua Lu. Great Indian food. Indian owned.
Lucy's Place, 5, Guihua Rd, ☏ +86 13977351663. Serves a variety of Western and Chinese dishes, including excellent fries and great coffee. Their apple crumble (¥20) is a must-try. The owner and manager (Lucy) is a terrific resource for things to do and places to go in Yangshuo.
Luna (听月餐厅) Moon Hill Village (On the rooftop of Yangshuo Village Inn), ☏ +86-773-8778189. 12:00-01:00. Italian restaurant designed by Yangshuo Mountain Retreat owner, Chris Barclay, Luna offers gorgeous views of Moon Hill and the surrounding village. They also serve gourmet Chinese dumplings and offer a full bar. There's no elevator so be prepared to walk up.
Kelly's Cafe, Guihua Lu. Great service and food, cheap beer. Foreigners living in Yangshuo often hang out here. Also offers free wireless Internet. The Kelly's Cafe on Guiha street is better than the one on the side street. They both have great milk shakes but their veggie burgers are not the best in town as claimed. Also, a nice view and an ample breakfast.
MC Blues. Good cocktails, happy hour from 18:00-20:00, great music, wireless internet, 2nd floor lounge and open late.
Nature's Cup, 15 Binjian Rd (Follow Li River north towards the school - across from the ping pong tables), ☏ +86 15078960100. English speaking, Excellent breakfast with bottomless coffee at a good price. Great coffee! The pear and ginger juice and 'adult shake' with malibu were to die for. Best fresh drinks in Yangshuo.
Red Star Express, Guihua Lu (Turnoffs from both West Street and Xianqian Jie are marked with a flag showing a Red Star.). Poor service and terrible Mexican food. Don't bother going here.
Roof Garden (屋顶花园餐厅), Yangshuo Hidden Dragon Villa, Big Banyan Tree scenery zone (Rooftop of Yangshuo Hidden Dragon Villa nearby Yulong River), ☏ +86 86-0773-8816268. 08:00-23:00. Rooftop of Yangshuo Hidden Dragon Villa in Big Banyan Tree scenery Zone nearby Yulong River. Overlooking the peaceful and beautiful mountains, Yulong River and rice paddies, the Roof Garden Restaurant divides into the open rooftop restaurant and enclose rooftop restaurant, each can accommodate 40 persons at the same time, 80 persons in total. The enclosed rooftop restaurant combines the Restaurant, Wine Bar and Tea Bar together. edit
Soul Cafe, Guihua Lu (opposite Kelly's Cafe). A great coffee house.
Twin Peaks Cafe, West St. Standard western fare. Slow service.
Valentine, Guihua Lu (on the corner of Guiha Lu and the small bridge towards west street). French Chef Nicolas with a romantic atmosphere. Original first class fusion cuisine. Great desert and best chocolate cake of all the city. A good selection of tapas and cocktails.
Clay Pot This is where all the climbers go for dinner. On Guihua Ln. Leaving Bar98 cross canal and turn right, pass many restaurants until street diverges away from canal. Earthware Pot (next to empty Clay Pot) is the packed place on the right. Simple menu, great food, cheap.
Riverview Cafe - A restaurant with a panoramic view of the Li River.
Cloud Nine — A popular Chinese place on West Street.
Dumpling King Just off the walking street from the bus station. This cheap eatery states 'We may not be in lonely planet but we are good for you' ...It is not, it is awful.
Julies Moon Hill View Chinese and western delicacies served in a peaceful environment, just by Moon Hill.
Snow Lion A great place just outside of town. Eat on the terrace by the river. Well known for its Crispy Duck dishes with fresh plum sauce.
Carpe Diem restaurant, Shi Ban Qiao, 37 (follow the river upstream (north) from West Street for about 1,5km). This charming restaurant with a great outside deck offers a fine selection of the local cuisine as well as a variety of international dishes in a quiet and relaxing setting with great views. Breakfasts, brunches, lunch and dining with generous portions. Weekly barbecue and Chinese buffet nights. Cozy bar with a nice selection of Belgian Beers and South-African wines. Belgian-Chinese management.
Ganguoyu (干锅鱼) — A "dry pot" fish restaurant very popular with the locals. It is located beside the pond on Jiefang Lu (between the petrol station and the tunnel).
Yangshuo Ren (阳朔人) — A Chinese restaurant very popular with the locals. It specializes in beer fish and other hot pots. It is on the market street between Sunshine 100 and the 99 supermarket.
Beifang Jiaozi Guan (北方饺子馆) ("Dynasty of Dumplings") — This "northern dumplings" restaurant on Xianqian Jie near the intersection with Die Cui Lu and right around the corner from the Magnolia Hotel has fantastic North-East Chinese cuisine.
Huang Jin Lian — This is a good restaurant on Diecui Rd (parallel to West St) serving the local delicacies. The local shrimp dish is interesting as you eat them whole so they have a bit of crunch. Be prepared to pay ¥1 for the provision of the shrink wrapped dish set and ¥1 for a bowl of rice. This restaurant is quite close to the market that runs along the river and service is friendly.
Gan's Noodles (this noodles shop is located about a 20-minute walk from the main bus station, down the road toward Guilin, on the right). Specializing in handmade noodles, this tiny shop is an out of the way treasure most tourists will never visit. For ¥8 you get a great spicy beef noodle bowl. With a beer to wash it all down, this little 4 table shop had excellent service, while the servers don't know English, the menu has pictures and English names, and whatever you end up with will be amazing.
Sichuan Restaurant A great Sichuan Restaurant on FuRong Rd. Maybe 100m along Die-cui lu travelling away from the water then right (big sign). The fish flavoured eggplant is great as are the fried green peppers (not on menu - just hope someone has them and point). Menu with English and pictures.
Dynasty Dumplings (一品居), 21 Xian Qian Jie, 县前街21号 (Thirty metres off West Street), ☏ +86 773-8868387. Small restaurant offering authentic Northern Chinese food, run by a couple from Liaoning. Very popular with Western tourists, they have the usual Chinese-English bilingual menu with pictures, so ordering is not a problem. Try their dumplings (¥12-15 for a serving of twelve). ¥12-100.




Bars and discos have popped up all over West Street. Just choose a crowded one. Remember during slow times you can always ask for a discount on the drinks. Qian Xian street is a side road of West Street, more foreigners, especially climbers hang out there. Another good option for drinking is Guihua Lu, paralel to West street. Bars here are cheaper, and filled with the local foreigners, students and longstay travellers, which makes it more laidback than touristy west street. Many of the guesthouses, hostels and hotels have bars in them. Some are better then others, such as the roof top bar on Monkey Janes might have the best view in the city. Just remember it is worth branching out.

  • Festina Lente - Breakfast cafe and cocktail bar, with their own special cocktails. No loud music inside, nice place to hang out, relax and enjoy great (and pretty cheap) quality drinks. Happy hour all day long and a great burger menu. Located on Xianqian Jie next to the lizzard lounge.
  • Kaya is mainly reggae oriented, but a wider variety of music is played. Very laidback atmosphere, regular live music (permanent open mic) and parties. Located in Guihua Lu 47, next to dr. Lily Li. They recently opened a second branch in nearby Guilin.
  • Bar 98 is an ozzie bar
  • Lizard Lounge, is a rock climber hangout, with free bouldering and regular parties. On Qian Xian street.

River Bar - River Bar Bing Jiang Lu (From the Li River end of West Street, walk upstream (left/north) for about 5-10 minutes. Past the school, past the shops, just keep going until you think you have gone too far. You will reach the new undercover tunnel/bridge and just inside on your right is the entrance). There is a great menu with fantastic tapas and wine, combined with a perfect view of the mountains in the evening, from the bank of the Li River. Highly recommended for a relaxing evening, or afternoon. Very quite location. Idyllic. Should not be thought of as a bar, but a friendly retreat, for family and friends. Hosted by a quiet and friendly Australian, with great taste in food. Fluent in Mandarin, and many of his chinese partners are also fluent in English. Watch the night fishermen fly past on a strong current, with cormorants making quick work of bringing in the catch. Hours: 5:00pm-late

Monkey Jane's Rooftop Bar, alley off West Street. Opens in the afternoon and closes late, often 03:00-04:00. Monkey Jane's Rooftop Bar & Hostel is a nice and chill rooftop bar in a small alley of West Street. During the day it's great for chilling and enjoying the scenery with a nice view of the hills around Yangshuo. At night there's often parties with cheap beer and cocktails and things go crazy every now and then. There's a beer pong table and if you're lucky enough to beat Jane, you get a free T-shirt! Has beer pong tournaments every now and then. Happy Hour is from 6-9 with 2 cocktails for 30 kuai and shots for 20 kuai. They serve ice-cold Tsingtao, BeerLao, Heineken and Paulaner. Try their local Snake Baijiu ;) Tsingtao 15.
Cafe le Votre, West Street. Set back from the street with a courtyard in front, is a brew pub with its own beer. They have two brews, a wheat beer and a dark beer, both are rare finds in China. They also have French and Chinese food; quality is good and prices relatively high. Their courtyard is a great place for people-watching, but unfortunately it is also convenient for touts to find you.
Mono Roof-top Bar, lianfeng lane #44 (Just off West St, opposite Cavalier Bar), ☏ +86 773-8821717, +86 13377324477 (mobile), ✉ [email protected]. Open 20:00, Close late. Bar is on the fourth floor, with a small rooftop drinking area, great for getting away from the heat and crowds at street level. Fantastic views of the mountains that are lit up at night time. Ground floor is being renovated as an art gallery to display the owner's paintings. Free internet cafe for customers, 10 computers available. Bar has a fussball table, and roof-top area has a pool table. The owner and staff are very friendly, and speak good English. Large local beer ¥10, Spirits ¥15-30.
The Brew Yangshuo (formerly The Alley - Yangshuo Beer Bar & Restaurant), Sunshine 100, E 110 B, ☏ +86 159 7740 4074. 17:00-late. Located right in the centre of Yangshuo's nightlife area in a pedestrian zone and is a great place for a few drinks and good western food (pizza and steaks are excellent), very nice music selection. This bar offers a great variety of imported beers (Duvel, Leffe, Stella and Erdinger), and plenty of cocktails as well as harder stuff (absinthe, single malts etc.) They have a foosball table and every Wednesday foosball competition. Great coffee, European football live, nice outside sitting area, good service, very good English . ¥10 for a local beer.
The London Tavern - Bar & Restaurant, Guihua Rd. 16:00-late. The London Tavern is an authentic English pub right in the middle of Yangshuo. They sell London Pride and other beers on draught and carry a reasonably wide selection of bottled English ales. The manager is English and they sell the best British food in Yangshuo. A hangout for local expats who drop in for a taste of home and even a game of darts!
Rusty Bolt, 22 Guihua Rd (Across from Bar 98 and next to Kelly's Cafe). As the sun sets, Bike Asia turns into the Rusty Bolt, a hangout for climbers and cyclists. An interesting mix of folks who have been in town for hours, months and years. Wednesday the bar hosts a card game night. Thursday is a dice game night (Farkle) starting at 20:30. Other bars on West Street often have very overpriced drinks and too-loud techno music; this place has neither offering more of a chilled lounge atmosphere.




There are hundreds of cheap guesthouses in Yangshuo now. Although be careful because many of the cheaper Chinese hotels, especially those far from West Street, offer you great rooms for next to nothing and everything else for a high price. There are also several bargains during the slow times of the year. During certain times of the year you might be able to get a very nice room in a very nice hotel for a very low price. Any place within a block of West Street will likely be very loud, as apparently every bar on West Street turns up their sound systems to the max until 02:00.

Climbers Inn, 8 Fuqian Lane (Across the road from Rock Abond and the police station), ☏ +86 773 8814370, ✉ [email protected]. English-speaking, climbing owners. Has moved away from the West St area to this quieter alley near the local market. Cheap and simple. From 40¥ for a dorm bed.
Double Moon Hotel, 16 Xian Qian St. Offers private rooms with hot showers for reasonable prices in off season. Decent, clean rooms with TV and double bed, helpful staff. There are also several other good budget options surrounding this hotel. From ¥40, but you need to negotiate.
Flowers Youth Hostel, 90 Pantao Rd (2 minutes from bus station, opposite Yangshuo Park), ☏ +86 773 8822538, ✉ [email protected]. Probably the busiest hostel in the off season. Internet, free wifi, bike rental and laundry service. Dorm ¥40 (members ¥35), twin ¥100-120, single/double ¥60-90. Free breakfast with twin, single and double rooms.
Lisa's Cafe, West St. The original hostel in town, and one with a lot of character, though these days looks a little dilapidated. Dorm beds from ¥25. edit
Monkey Jane's Hotel & Rooftop Bar, off West St (near the river end, well signed). Reliable service and friendly English-speaking staff. Best place to meet other backpackers. By day the Rooftop Bar becomes the hostel common area, by night it is a party with the cheapest beer in town during happy hour. Huge flatscreen TV with 500 DVDs, free WI-FI.
Moon Resort, Moon Hill village (in front of the mountain, take the GaoTian bus from Yanshuo station 8 km/15 minutes to Moon Hill Village (¥2.50)), ☏ +86 773 8777688, ✉ [email protected]. Great value with good local and Western food, friendly and helpful staff, and a pleasant location with great views of the local karst scenery. Close to the Moon Hill, Big Banyan tree, the Yulong river, and several caves. ¥ 150.
Peace Family Holiday Hotel, No.12 Deicui Rd, ☏ +86 773 8881289, fax: +86 773 8881289. dorms starting from ¥ 20.
Riverside Lodge, Government Front Rd (not far from the river, north from West St), ☏ +86 773 8824279. The tallest building in Yangshuo with a nice view over the whole city from the rooftop terrace. Slightly hard to find at first, but in a very peaceful area between the police station and the town government office, with only two or three minutes walk to the busiest streets. English-speaking boss who lets you use the kitchen and can reserve cheaper tickets for you to all tourist destinations. Clean and renovated rooms with air conditioning, bike rental is also possible without deposit. ¥70.
Wada Hostel Yangshuo, No.8 Pan Tao Road (From the upper end of West Street, cross the bridge, enter the small alleyway next to the ICBC, then turn right), ☏ +86 7738821866. Just like the one in Guilin with new furniture. Super friendly and helpful staff. They have three new mountain bikes for rent ¥40/day. From 35¥.
West Lily Hotel (莲西宾馆), 49 Billian Lane (碧莲巷49号) (if arriving by bus: leave the bus station and turn right on Pantao Rd, then take the second road on your right after the car parking (between Happy Hotel and Letu Hotel), turn left on Billian Lane and the hotel is after 20 metres on your right). The very friendly English-speaking owners Steven and Lily offer a wide range of tours and bus/train/boat/airplane tickets as well as cheap bike rentals (from ¥5-10/day) Twin/double ¥50-60.
Xi Jie House Inn, PanTao Rd (behind the Industrial and Commercial Bank). Mr. Li will meet you at the bus stop and grab you to take you to XiJie. The place is not very nice, but a very cool design and cheap. These guys are really pushy trying to get you to do their tours. If you can speak a little Chinese, just stay here and book the tours on your own.
Yangshuo Senior Leader Youth Hostel (阳朔老班长国际青年旅舍), 36 FuQianXiang, Die Cui Rd (from the bus station, walk right down Die Cui Road for about five minutes, turn Left into an alleyway that is directly across the street from Guihua Lu, pass a laundromat on your left), ☏ +86 773 6919780. Check-in: 24 hrs, check-out: noon. Excellent hostel with spacious lobby, Wi-fi plus free internet on in-house computers, consistently clean rooms and bathrooms. The staff speaks good English, knows the town well, and will help you get the same prices that the locals pay for all the sightseeing spots. If you get up early enough they'll often bring you free coffee. Very social atmosphere, guests often stay up late into the night playing cards and talking. Discounts on Tuesdays if you come wearing orange. From ¥35 for 8-bed dorm.
Youth Hostel, 102 West St (near the Pantou Lu end), ☏ +86 773 8820933, ✉ [email protected].
Blue Lotus, near middle of West St. Shower, TV, and Western toilets. Singles ¥60.
Fawlty Towers (on the main street (opposite the Bus Station)). Decent rooms, helpful staff. ¥50 (private room, off-season).
Friend Hotel, 2 Chenzhong Rd (coming down West St from Pantao Lu, turn left into Chenzhong Rd and cross the bridge over the creek, the hotel is the second establishment on the right), ☏ +86 773 8828696. Clean and just far away from West St to be quiet. Staff are friendly. Rooms with western toilet and hot water shower. ¥80-120 (twin/double, off-season).
The Stone Bridge, 22 Shi Ban Qiao (From the bus station in Yangshuo , walk east down Deicui Rd till you reach the Li River. Turn left, go passed the covered market and follow the blue signs till you reach Shi Ban Qiao Village and the hostel.-15 mins walk from town), ☏ +86 187 7731 6162, ✉ [email protected]. Eco-friendly homestay country villa in a small and quiet village just outside of Yangshuo. Staff is very friendly, rooms are spotless. Building is a Smoke Free environment. Aircon, WIFI, Traditional Chinese homecooked dinners, rooftop lounge with DVD player and Playstation, bicycle rent. from ¥40.
Lisa's Mountain View Hotel. In a quiet street just 4 min walk from West St, restaurants, bars and the heart of Yangshuo. Great mountain views.
MorningSun Hotel, 4 Chenzhong Rd (next to Friend Hotel), ☏ +86 773 8813899, ✉ [email protected]. This is a wonderful family owned hotel with a great location. Much nicer than other mid range hotels. The Ming/Xing architecture is very attractive and the rooms are very clean. Reception girls speak good English and they are friendly and knowledgeable.
Outside Inn, Chao Long Village (ask the taxi driver in Yangshuo for Helan Fandian (Holland hotel)), ☏ +86 773 8817109. Restored farmhouse in a small village 4 km from town in a beautiful, quiet setting. Very friendly staff with great advice in multiple languages (Chinese, English, Dutch, German and little French). Relaxed atmosphere. Restaurant, air-conditioning an option, bicycle hire, free wifi, computer, private DVD players, pool table, etc. If you want to take photos of the rural landscape and people at work, you can book a very gentle trek at the inn. Room starting from ¥120, house ¥350.
River View Hotel, 15 Binjiang Rd, ☏ +86 773 8822688. ¥200.
Rosewood Inn, 21 Gui Hua Rd (in a quiet alley along a small stream just a few steps away from the West St). Charming wooden decoration and great comfort in a calm environment. The 3-bed room on the first floor is particularly comfortable. Avoid balcony rooms to ensure no mosquitos. ¥100-300.
Trippers Carpe Diem Hostel, 35 Shi Ban Qiao, ☏ +86-773-8822533, ✉ [email protected]. Yangshuo's only countryside hostel in a picturesque village near the Li River, just around the corner of Yangshuo's lively center. Delicious food and a great cozy balcony bar (with heating in winter). Offers weekly barbecue and Chinese buffet nights. Owned and perfectly managed by a Belgian/Chinese family with a very cute little son. Fridge full of Belgian beers (Duvel, Chimay, Orval, Leffe...). All their private rooms have wooden flooring, wifi-access, air-con and heating facilities. From ¥35.
White Lion Hotel, 103 West St. US$19-34.
Yangshuo Culture House, No.110,Beisan xiang,Chengxi Road,Yangshuo,Guilin,China (walk along Pan Tao Rd towards Guilin until it turns into Xi Cheng Rd, continue past the gas station, about 200 meters past the gas station, look for a yellow sign and turn right into the alley, it is at the end of the alley on the right), ☏ +86 13635140816. They provide cooked dinner at 18:00 (with the other guests, so no chance to practice Chinese in case that is what you were hoping for). Rooms are warm in winter. During the winter, the owner, Mr. Wei, he is very helpful and friendly with any needs or questions you might have. ¥100 per person per night.
Yangshuo Village Inn, Moon Hill Village. Yangshuo's first boutique hotel. Close to caves, rivers and Liu San Jie lightshow. Thirteen beautifully appointed rooms (5 of them in a beautifully restored mud brick farmhouse) with solar hot water in summer, American Standard fixtures, handmade bamboo beds and amazing views of Moon Hill and surrounding limestone karst towers. Also great Italian restaurant, bikes to rent and helpful staff.
Rosewood Hotel, No. 95 Gui Hua Lu, Yangshuo, ✉ [email protected]. New hotel on West Street, sister hotel to Rosewood Inn but a more luxurious one. Beautiful and comfortable boutique style rooms with the most upscale designer bathrooms. Lots of toiletries and details with friendly staff. From ¥280-480.
Dragon River Retreat. A new hotel on the bank of the Yulong River surrounded by limestone peaks and bamboo forests.
The Giggling Tree (¥30 to get into the town by taxi). A guesthouse created from farmhouses surrounding a courtyard in Aishanmen, a village 5 km from Yangshuo. Friendly owners (Dutch) and free internet. Restaurant is really good. Good atmosphere and great staff. ¥120-250.
Ecofarm Guesthouse (稻花香农家乐) (Yulong River, Chaoyang Pier (位于遇龙河景区朝阳码头), 5km from downtown, 200 meters from The Giggling Tree), ☏ +86 773 8817023, ✉ [email protected]. The guesthouse is in a picturesque Aishanmen village by the Yulong River. All rooms offer amazing views of surrounding limestone karst mountain as well as rice terraces. It is possible to watch both gorgerous sunrise and sunset. The guesthouse has its own vegetable garden and serves organic Chinese food. Owned by a friendly local family. WiFi-access, air-con and heating facilities. The owner can offter you great tips for photo shooting spots. From ¥680.
Li River Retreat, 水岸花园别墅, 双滩村一号 (龙头山码头往里), ☏ +86 773 8828950. Great views. Free Wifi in all rooms. Just far enough out of town to miss all the late night noise. Large rooms with very good air conditioning.
Magnolia Hotel 阳朔白玉兰酒店, 7 Die Cui Rd (叠翠路7号) (a block from the river and West St), ☏ +86 773 8819288, fax: +86 773 8819218. Air-conditioned, centrally located, and clean. Friendly and helpful staff.
Moondance Boutique Resort, Fenglou Village (Quietly located, right behind famous Moon Hill, along the Jinbao River), ☏ +86 773 8778999, ✉ [email protected]. True Comfort in the countryside. Experience the tranquility of a sleepy Farmer Village with all modern comforts at arms length. 12 Grand suites with relaxing bathroom and large balcony. ¥480-720.
Riverside Retreat (directly opposite Yangshuo on the Li River, a 10 minute car ride from the centre), ☏ +86 7738826879, ✉ [email protected]. Countryside location. Beautiful views, English staff and Western-style accommodation, an inground swimming pool with poolside bar and grill. Family suites and twin/double rooms. ¥250-350.
Snow Lion Riverside Resort (3 km out of town). Great views, clean, friendly, Wi-Fi. Double/twin ¥298-368, breakfast included.
Yangshuo Mountain Retreat, ☏ +86 773 8777091, ✉ [email protected]. Beautiful hotel, set between the karst hills on the banks of the Yulong River with an extensive garden, 7 km from West St. 29 rooms most with balcony and river view, indoor and outdoor dining. A long time China expat favorite in the Yangshuo area.
Yangshuo Mountain View Retreat, ☏ +86 773 8776369, ✉ [email protected]. Newer hotel not to be confused with the similarly-named one above. A set of country houses that combines Chinese and Western styles, with accommodation, restaurant, ecological agriculture, and travel services, 5 km outside Yangshuo. ¥250-450.
Green Lotus Hotel. A large, new (built in 2009), Western-style hotel set on the river with most if not all rooms having a river view. Hotel is upmarket but a little lacking in personality.

You can use the form below to search for availability (Travellerspoint receives a commission for bookings made through the form)





Many people work in Yangshuo as English teachers, tutors and in strange import/export ventures. Another option is to just open up a bar, restaurant or hostel to make money from the foreign tourists.




Village near Yangshuo

Village near Yangshuo

© adamandmeg

There are several places offering climbing, Tai Chi, Kung-fu and cooking lessons. Just walk along West Street to find out more information. Many Chinese people come to Yangshuo to improve their language skills, and so do foreign tourists. Several language schools and private teachers offer English and Chinese lessons. The big schools often offer accommodation and Visa support, whereas private teachers have more intensive custom made courses and have more reasonable prices.

Yangshuo Tai Chi and Kung Fu School, Shibanqiao Village, Yangshuo, 541900 (in the picturesque village of Shi Ban Qiao, a short walk along the Li River from Yangshuo), ☏ +86 773 8820866, ✉ [email protected]. Master Fu Neng Bin has won 17 gold medals in Tai Chi Chuan and was national push hands champion for five years. He is a 12th-generation successor of Chen family Tai Chi Chuan and preferred disciple of Grandmaster Chen Zhenglei. The school in Yangshuo has a team of English-speaking instructors and is the largest and best equipped in Yangshuo.
Yanghsuo Cooking School, ☏ +86 13788437286. Run by an Australian living in China. Single and multi-day classes in traditional Chinese cooking. 2 different menus depending on which day you go (morning/lunch or afternoon/dinner classes), and typical dishes include beer fish, stuffed pumpkin flowers, egg-wrapped dumplings and stir fried pork with vegetables and oyster sauce. A tour of the local market and hotel pick up is included.
Chinese courses at Omeida Chinese Academy (Omeida Chinese Academy), No.49 Longyue Road, Yangshuo, ☏ +86 773-8812233, ✉ [email protected]. M–F 08:00-18:00; Sa Su 09:00-12:00, 14:00-17:00. Omeida is a Chinese school based in Yangshuo that provides a total-immersion program to foreigners interested in learning Chinese. The school provides the choice of 3 standard course types and a volunteer program: a comprehensive Chinese course that provides students with an all-encompassing approach to studying Chinese that accompanies all skill levels, an HSK prep course which prepares students for China’s standard Chinese fluency exam ( commonly a prerequisite companies operating in China), or a specialized Chinese course which provides students with 1-on-1 classes, flexibility to determine their own schedule, and the option of choosing specific areas of Chinese to base their curriculum. Volunteers can enroll in any of the above courses, and are not charged for room and board. Omeida's tuition also includes housing, meals, 1-on-1 tutoring, and invitation to all cultural activities. The school shares a very close proximity with its sister school (Omeida Language College) that teaches English to Chinese natives, so Chinese language students have daily opportunities (organized and unorganized) to practice and improve their Chinese.



Keep Connected


There are several gaming centers located just off of West Street near the bus station. Internet here is generally cheap and fast.

Wangba (联网) means internet bar in Chinese. Almost every town will have an internet bar or gaming center. The best way to spot an internet bar is to look for the 网(ba) character, which means net, and large digitized images of computer game characters. Often, there will be a sign saying Green Power in English at the entrance. Most gaming centers cost about RMB3 an hour. You prepay at the main desk and are then given a plastic card or a piece of paper. Once you are done you return the card or piece of paper and get reimbursed for the money you didn't spend. Be prepared for a place that might be dingy, basic and messy. Internet bars in China tend to get crowded starting in the late afternoon to the late evenings.

Some hotels provide access from the rooms that may or may not be free; others may provide a wireless service or a few desktops in the lounge area.
Also, quite a few cafes provide free wireless Internet service. Some cafes, even provide a machine for customer use.


See also: International Telephone Calls

The country calling code to China is 86. To make an international call from China, the code is 00.

When making international phone calls it is best to buy an IP card. They typically have a value of ¥100 but sometimes can be had for as little as ¥25. The cards have printed Chinese instructions, but after dialing the number listed on the card English-spoken instructions are available. As a general indication of price, a call from China to Europe lasts around 22 minutes with a ¥100 card. Calls to the U.S. and Canada are advertised to be another 20% cheaper. There is no warning before the card runs out of minutes.

If you already have a GSM 900/1800 cellphone, you can roam onto Chinese networks, but calls will be very expensive (¥12-35/minute is typical). If you're staying for more than a few days, it will usually be cheaper to buy a prepaid Chinese SIM card; this gives you a Chinese phone number with a certain amount of money preloaded. Chinese tend to avoid phone numbers with the bad-luck digit '4', and vendors will often be happy to offload these "unsellable" SIM-cards to foreigners at a discount. If you need a phone as well, prices start around ¥100/200 used/new. Chinese phones, unlike those sold in many Western countries, are never "locked" and will work with any SIM card you put in them. China's two big operators are China Mobile and China Unicom. Most SIMs sold by the two work nationwide, with Unicom allowing Hong Kong/Macau/Taiwan usage as well. There is usually a surcharge of about ¥1/min when roaming outside the province you bought the SIM, and there are some cards that work only in a single province, so check when buying.


China Post (中国邮政) is the official postal service of the People's Republic of China, operated by the State Postal Bureau of the People's Republic of China (website in Chinese only), and has more details about price to send letters, postcards and parcels, both domestically as well as internationally. The Chinese postal service is very good. Remember that in more remote places usually only one post office in a city can handle sending international boxes or letters. Also many times it might be worth having the name of the country you are trying to send to in Chinese characters, because small town people might not know what Estonia is in English. Post offices have a striking green logo and can easily be found everywhere in the cities. They are mostly open every day (including weekends!) from 8:00am to 6:00pm, though small offices might have shorter opening times, while the bigger ones in central and touristic areas are sometimes open during evenings as well.


Quick Facts


  • Latitude: 24.77511
  • Longitude: 110.47731

Accommodation in Yangshuo

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This is version 80. Last edited at 8:54 on Dec 31, 19 by Utrecht. 5 articles link to this page.

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