Monday, 7 September 2015

One place I cannot get out of my head - Yangshou, China

My little family has had one Summer holiday that ticked all our boxes, 
we had scenery, relaxation, history, adventure, great food and fun all wrapped up in one.
We spent two glorious weeks in Yangshou, China.

We stayed in Aishanmen village, about a 20 minute bike ride from Yangshou. 
So peaceful and quiet, the gentle ways of the village a perfect antidote to the high energy, 
fast paced life in Shanghai. We felt the stresses melt away as we
were driven from the airport in Guilin, through the glorious countryside to our home for two weeks.

Aishanmen village, Yangshou, China

This is the view that greeted us on arrival at our guest house, rural and picturesque
amongst rice paddies and Karst mountains.

The Giggling Tree, Aishanmen village, Yangshou, China

We walked into the Chinese Moongate of our home for two weeks, the converted farmhouses 

The Giggling Tree, Aishanmen village, Yangshou, China

The views were beautiful, embraced by the branches of "The Giggling tree"...this was going 
to be a holiday to remember!

Farmer, Aishanmen village, Yangshou, China

We spent days cycling around local villages, watching local farmers work the fields.

Yulong River, Aishanmen village, Yangshou, China

The farmers manned the bamboo rafts for the tourists in the Summer months.

Aishanmen village, Yangshou, China

Went about their daily chores...

Ducks, Aishanmen village, Yangshou, China

Taking produce to market!

The Li River, Yangshou, China

We meandered along the Li river on a boat, cruised by countless Karst mountains
and marvelled at the scenery.

The Li River, Yangshou, China

We did a few cheesy touristy things, held a pole of cormorant fishing birds...

20RMB The Li River, Yangshou, China

Held a 20RMB note above the mountains on the Li river pictured on the note!

The Li River, Yangshou, China

The scenery breathtaking and relaxing.

The Yulong River,Yangshou, China

We cycled by villages, farmlands and markets, had water pistol fights 
as we headed down the Yulong River on bamboo rafts with friends.
We swam in the clean water, ate delicious fresh fish at restaurants on barges
set up in the middle of the river. Glorious summer days!

Bamboo raft, The Yulong River,Yangshou, China

We stopped to take in the beauty surrounding us.

The Yulong River,Yangshou, China

Floated by areas of outstanding beauty.

Bamboo rafts, The Yulong River,Yangshou, China

We sat back and relaxed, enjoyed the ride as the boatmen steered us down the river.

Yangshou cooking school

We went to a cooking school, visited a local wet market and learnt to prepare and cook
five new dishes, then got to sit down with friends, old and new to enjoy our creations. 

Lotus blooms, Aishanmen village, Yangshou, China

We walked through the local villages, discovered a small lotus farm and thoroughly
enjoyed strolling among the beautiful lotus blooms!

The Giggling Tree, Aishanmen village, Yangshou, China

There was always a cold beer in beautiful surroundings at the end of every fun filled day.
The Giggling Tree, serves great value Chinese and western meals and is open all day.

Light Show "Impression Liu Sanjie" Guilin, China

We travelled into Guilin for the spectacular Light Show "Impression Liu Sanjie" 
directed by Zhang Yimou, whose work was featured in the opening ceremony 
of the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Light Show "Impression Liu Sanjie" Guilin, China

A breathtaking performance highlighted by the backdrop of the river and Karst mountain setting.

Cormorant Fishing, Yangshou, China

We went on a boat trip at night to see the fishermen and their cormorants at work, 
I was a little worried at first that it might have been a little cruel as the birds have a 
noose around their necks to prevent them from swallowing the fish that they catch.
After watching the relationship between the bird and it's owner, my fears were allayed.
The fisherman usually hand rears the birds from when they hatch and the bond is strong.

Cormorant Fishing, Yangshou, China

The birds get rewarded with a large fish each at the end of each fishing trip.
There are only a handful of these fishermen and their birds still fishing in this traditional manner.

Sunset, Yulong River, Yangshou, China

This is only a sample of the many and diverse things we did and adventures we
went on in our two glorious weeks in Yangshou. 
Yet it was still the most relaxing family holiday we have ever been on, time spent together 
and with friends. So many things to do and a place to chill and refresh at the end of each day.
Two weeks was not enough to fit it all in that the area has to offer. 
We cannot get it out of our head, even four years later...plans are afoot to return in 2016.
The Giggling Tree now has a this space!


  1. That sounds like it was a wonderful vacation. I hope its as nice when you return in 2016.

    1. Thank you Marcia, it was a wonderful holiday. I am sure it will be just as good when we get back.

  2. Absolutely, absolutely stunning - hearing about these wonderful experiences is simply why running these linkups are terrible ;)

    1. Yangshou is spectacular Emma, these link ups just add to the wish list don't they! So much to see and do in our world

  3. This place looks wonderful! Must've been a magical experience to try the bamboo rafts :)

    1. Thanks for commenting Barbara, the bamboo rafts were great, whether we were floating by the scenery or having water pistol fights with friends. So much fun!

  4. I love this. What a beautiful area.