Jalan-jalan: Guilin Central (桂林) & Li Pu (荔浦) - Day 3 & 4

:: Day 3 --31-01 -- Gu Dong Waterfall Park (桂林古东景区) & Limestone Cave (冠岩) ::

u Dong Waterfall Park -- singing love songs with the village girls (shan ge 唱山歌), sitting in a bamboo raft (坐竹排), horse cart ride, enjoying the multiple waterfalls with peculiar names, and seeing a rock that looks like the Godess of Mercy (观音) at the top most waterfall.

Limestone Cave (冠岩)
-- in chinese, the place's name is read as "Guan4 Yan2". Literally it means champion rock, well, I think it means the rock are grand and the most beautiful among all. To visit this place, we actually had 4 modes of "transport" to enjoy the view: went in thru a roller-coaster-like car (坐滑车), went in an elevator up to 12 stories high to see the whole height o
f the cave inside, cruising the small rivers inside the cave in a boat, and the last...walk with your own feet. The limestone cave were definitely amazing and beatiful, with its peculiarly shaped stalagmites and stalactites, and the creative names the locals gave to the rock structures.

Tallest manmade waterfall -
- this was not included in the tour, but we saw this "waterfall" in the city. The water actually falls from a tall hotel building (i don't know how high it was, but it was at least 20 stories high). The waterfall only flows during certain times of the day. And we lucky to caught an eye of it at the right time.

:: Day 4 --1-02 -- Fu Bo Mountain (伏波山), Tea Drinking (品茶), Emperor's Palace (王府), Bamboo raft scenic cruise (坐竹排) & Silver Rock (银子岩) ::

Fu Bo Mountain -- There's a local folklore about this mountain. Long ago, the Vietnamese were always attacking the faraway China lands. So one day, the Vietnamese general challenged Fu Bo general to shoot an arrow as far as he could. And the vietnamese soldiers would retreat until where the arrow landed. It was believed that Fu Bo general shot his arrow across 3 mountains, and landed at the boundary of the two countries. The Vietnamese general kept his promise and retreated. You can see the general statue in the pic. And they said if you go the mountain near the boundary, you can see the arrow.

Tea Drinking -- Tried the local tea varieties: Gui Hua Tea (桂花茶), Tian Qi Tea (田七茶) and Pu Er Tea (普尔茶).

Emperor's Palace
(王府)-- This is one of the emperor's palace. Heard the story of how the king invited all the "Tai Sui" (chinse guardian general for the year, 太岁) into a chamber, and how he kept them there and pleased them to ensure good luck to his family. They also had a short sketch where visitors can participate in taking imperial exams (look at me in the pic, stting in one of the small chambers). My brother was lucky to won the first place (状元) and there he is receiving his scroll and all of us taking photo with the Zhuang Yuan scholar :P

Bamboo Raft Scenic Cruise
-- on the way to Li Pu, we stopped by this Yu Long River (遇龙江). Literal translation of the river's name means "meeting the dragon". I don't know whether it's lucky or not that I didn't see any dragons there though. This place is where we went onboard those bamboo rafts, and a village gal would entertain the guests singing songs (山歌), and we also got to see how the water birds (鱼鹰) catch fish.

Silver Rock -- Another scenic limestone cave. According to the guide, we would actually climb about 20 over stories high while we are in the cave. The cave chambers were really high, and at some spots, there were even accumulation of shallow waters. And when you look into the water, you could see the reflection of the rocks, and it gives you a false sense of another world underneath the waters. We spend the night here, and got to taste another local specialty, yam coated with malt sugar (拔丝芋头). This must one of my favourites too, as the sugar is sweet and the yam is very tasty. Too bad there was none left on the plate before I remembered to take a photo of it :P

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