The tour itself was pretty much as expected - awesome vistas even if the weather was overcast and misty. The food on board the boat wasn't great but ok. If there was any real negative point it was the communication (or lack of it) we received from the tour operator the evening before the trip. We arrived at our hotel in Guilin at 7pm expecting there to be a message informing us of the pick-up time the next day but no message had been left. At 9pm I started phoning the number we had been given but the line was constantly 'busy'. After trying to get through about 20 times I had to resort to leaving email messages with Viator to try and get some information. Finally, at 11pm, we were contacted by the hotel receptionist to talk to someone from the tour operator and they finally gave us the pick-up time. 11pm was way too late and created way too much stress for us when we were meant to be on holiday! They need to do better than that!
Wow! Guilin is amazing. You must do this tour in Guilin. We were on the boat for about 3 hours. When we first boarded it was raining and we were seated at tables downstairs. We were not too keen on this and ventured upstairs to find it had stopped raining. We stood on the upper deck for the whole three hours and did not once get tired of the magnificent views. From small bamboo rafts latching on to our boat to try and sell fruit to the beautiful mountain scenery, this was like floating in a dream. Yangshuo was full of little market type stalls all selling the same things, so we decided to do the optional tour. We are so glad we did. We went to a village and sat on a water buffalo, got to watch the cormorants dive for fish, hold the bamboo stick the cormorants were on and visit the Shangri La village. We would strongly recommend doing the optional tour which was RMB200 each. Don't know what we would have done waiting in Yangshuo for four hours. On the way back to our hotel our guide told us the Shangri La Hotel we were staying at was a bit far out for the large coach to drive to, so she got off the bus with us in the town and put us in a taxi to our hotel and the company paid for it. We thought this was incredible customer care.
Nice tour guide and driver, but lunch not proper arrange by the company due to cny festival.. Which we have to drive along Guilin town n search for it !!
The Li River Cruise is lovely and Yangshuo is so beautiful with breath-taking scenery. It is definately underrated and undeservedly placed in the shadow of the more famous Guilin. My big criticism was that this is a full day tour yet when we arrived in Yangshuo, we were only given 1 hour to browse round or we had to pay extra for activities to fill the afternoon. This is extremeley cheeky bearing in mind the amount of money we had already spent on the trip. Because we chose not to pay extra, our tour was cut short and we were taken home earlier. I thought that was terrible.
This was the first day of 3 in Guilin, and it definitely set the tone. We loved the cruise, our tour guide who was both hilarious and knowledgeable, and the visit to Yangshuo. Even the bus rides had great views. You will stand in awe the entire day. This day alone made us fall in love with Guilin. Seeing the exact view that's on the 20 Yuan was surreal. I couldn't say enough about this trip. If you get a chance to take a country tour while in Yangshuo, I recommend it.
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