Enjoy hot spring spa in Longsheng for cold Winter

Guilin is suitable for travel for every season, even in winter. For a winter trip in Guilin, hot spring SPA is exactly a good ideas; and the hot springs in Longsheng is highly recommended.

Longsheng hot spring

Longsheng Hot Springs National Forest Park

Longsheng Hot Springs National Forest Park is situated in the multi-ethnic country of Longsheng, 130 km away from Guilin city. Covering an area of about 260 hectares, the park boasts dense primeval forests, rare animal and plant species as well as the famous hot springs.

The hot springs in the park win a reputation of “the first hot spring of southern China”. The water spring up from rocks that are 1200 meters below ground with temperature fluctuating between 45℃ and 58℃. It is colorless, tasteless, pure and clear. Moreover, the hot springs are identified by experts as natural mineral water that can be used for both medical treatment and drinking.

Longsheng hot spring

Longsheng hot spring pool

Consisting of 16 springs, Longsheng Hot Spring can be divided into upper and lower hot spring groups. Spring pools are made of stone, retaining a very natural feeling. People can relax themselves in the hot springs while enjoy the beautiful surroundings.

Rice Steamed in Bamboo

Besides the spectacular Longji Rice Terraces, Longsheng is also well-known for its colorful ethnic culture. The cuisine in Longsheng is featured with various and strong flavor of the local ethnic minority groups. A special local dish – rice steamed in bamboo, of Ping’an Zhuang village, would be highly recommended.

Rice Steamed in Bamboo

Zhuang woman was cooking rice on an open fire.

Ping’an is a Zhuang minority village high up in the mountains surrounded by spectacular Longji Rice Terraces. The lcocals make rice as their staple food, and cook it in a very special way. The bamboos are cut off several bamboo tubes around 35 cm, with both ends closed. Then, people would make a hole in one end with an electric drill. Via the hole, they put the rice, some meats, beans or other materials into the bamboo tube. Finally, The bamboo tube is sealed and placed on the fire to cook.

Bamboo tubes would be turned over from time to time to be evenly heated. It takes over 30 minutes for the rice to be done. Now you may ask, how to remove the rice from the bamboo and eat? People would split the bamboo tube in half, and the dish be served hot. Rice has a great subtle flavor enhanced, as it has been steamed inside the bamboo.

Rice Steamed in Bamboo

Rice Steamed in Bamboo

For a Longsheng trip, Make sure to try the rice steamed in bamboo. It’s very authentic and made in a most natural way possible.

One-day relaxing Nong Jia Le at Daxu ancient town and Maozhou Island

What is Nong Jia Le (农家乐)? The Nong Jia Le, literally “have fun in farmers’ home”, is a new tourism model in Southern China. It is often run by a farmers’ family, providing home-cooked meals and even comfortable accommodation. And, most importantly, it thus offers a relaxing escape from bustling city life. On December 8, our company organized a one-day winter outing for Maozhou island near Daxu ancient town, to experience the “Nong Jia Le”.

Daxu ancient town, Guilin

Daxu ancient town, Guilin

About 23 km south of Guilin, Daxu is a 1.000-year-old ancient town on the east bank of the Li River. It took us a 30-minuter drive to reach it from Guilin. A flagstone street, lined with well-preserved buildings, runs two kilometers along the river bank through the town.

Directly opposite to Daxu ancient town stand Maozhou island – the biggest one on Li River. Since 2002, the local folks on the island have developed rural ecotourism. Visitors are invited to have meals and stay overnight at their houses. A 5-minute boat trip took us to cross the river to the island. We got off the boat, and walked down the country lane to a reserved farmhouse. The host offered tea and some fruits to us. A few minutes later, our 2 point shooting contest began.
  

Soon, our lunch was ready. It was 12:30 in the afternoon. We had ordered chicken soup, stir fried duck with black fungus, scrambled eggs, and some vegetable dishes. For the cold weather, the first two dishes was served in a wok directly put on the top of an induction cooker. We all enjoy the meal so much.

After lunch, we started a round-the-island hike to explore Guilin’s countryside. All the way, walked on the narrow lane between fields, cross the bridges, and through bamboo forest. There are lots of fruit trees and vegetables growing on either side of the road. The locals were working in the fields, or chatting at the door. What a peaceful and serene place!
  

At 15:00, it was time to have a barbecue. Some were turning the roasting spits by the barbecue grill; others were playing chess or cards.
   

Happy time really flies. When it was dark, we went for a drive to Guilin. We did not plan to stay overnight, but it would have been nice, I think. For the day trip, the rural scenery was really a refreshment to us.