Guilin: Cruise the Li River
Guilin boasts some of the most beautiful landscapes China has to offer, with the town’s backdrop featuring small rolling mountains as far as the eye can see. The best way to soak up the views is to jump on a small bamboo raft (more touristy than it sounds) or a cruise boat from Guilin down to Yangshuo. If it’s cruise you’re after, you can find the cheapest available tickets by visiting the reception of any hostel in Guilin. The boat ride goes for around four hours with the option to join a tour and visit some beautiful caves for a bit extra, or you can just wander the charming streets of Yangshuo, which are lined with delicious fresh food stalls and shops selling intricate handmade souvenirs.
Do beware of boat staff trying to score commission off of you in every way possible. All cruise boats include a buffet lunch, but your guide may convince you that if you don’t purchase optional fish for extra then you might go hungry – pure trickery. Also, if you’re not keen to tour the caves and just want to wander around Yangshuo, you’ll need to be pretty stern, because their convincing skills can be pretty strong!