Intoxicating Guiyang, Offers A Cool Summer without Scorching Sun

2014-07-03China travel Guide

Guiyang, inhabited by more than 20 minorities, is a city of deep breath of life and local characteristics. For those travel to Guiyang for the first time, food maybe the primary theme, the specialty Fish in Sour Soup, fried bean curd, deep-fried bean curd balls and potatoes in high streets and back lanes…However, Guiyang, also known as a summer resort, is more than that and definitely a superb choice to get away scorching sun for a cool summer vacation.

In Guiyang, you can enjoy in cool mountains & waters in nearby suburb, experience colorful ethnic folk-custom in picturesque Kaiyang, or easily blend in the daily life of the commons in the marketplace. Here are three recommended stops to escape the summer heat on the edge of Guiyang City.

Qingyan Ancient Town, charms of ancient taste

Compare with the business-like bustling Lijiang Ancient Town and the picturesque Zhouzhuang Ancient Town, Qingyan Ancient Town is natural and simple. Only half-hour drive from downtown Guiyang, Qingyan Ancient Town is a town of bluestones built on the rugged mountain slope about 620 years ago, stone paved paths, stone walls, stone columns, stone the past, the town was prosperous with merchants, today, residents sell handmade crafts and freshly made local traditional snacks and specialties by their door, such as pig trotters, rice tofu, rose sugar...with original taste and flavor. What is more, in this small town, Chinese culture is compatible with foreign culture; you can find monasteries and churches of Buddhism, Taoism, Christian and Catholicism.

When it was built in Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), Qingyan was a military town. Today it still preserves the ancient city walls, crenels and batteries. It is said that Guizhou area was once a vast expanse of water and the museum in Qingyan displays a large metacrinus fossil can prove that. Furthermore, Qingyan Ancient Town was also a shelter for revolutionaries and their family members during the wars in modern time owing to its remote location and the safety. Today, their former residences are open to the public.

South River Grand Canyon, a cool and refreshing world and a good place to relieve summer heat

Located in Kaiyang County, about 50 minutes drive to Guiyang, the South River Grand Canyon is hailed as “a karst ecomuseum”. It is the typical karst gorge with a length of 40 kilometers with over 80 natural landscapes, 48 waterfalls of various postures, steep peaks, verdant vegetation and caves here and there.

Due to its unique landform, the canyon also serves an arena for outdoor athletes; travelers can also drift on the water by bamboo raft, dugout canoe, or motorboat. In addition, those people like quiet can go angling here by the river.

The scenic area has a Tiziyan holiday village with Buyi ethnic group’s stilted buildings set off in green trees. It is a perfect choice for a family summer vacation to escape the heat.

Kaiyang’s Ten-mile Gallery, unperturbed idyllic scenery

Ten-mile Gallery of Kaiyang, 1-hour-drive to Guiyang, is the representative of Guizhou’s purest and most beautiful countryside. It offers wonderful canyon scenery, idyllic scenery, folk custom and culture. Here you will find the golden rape flower fields, mist-shrouded selenium-rich tea plantation, and dozens of villages of Buyi people along the Qinglong River.

Here, travelers can experience the tea-leaves picking in the mountain, visit Shuitou Village to see the most primitive life of Buyi people, their beancurd mill, embroidery workshop, traditional performance, to savour their homemade rice wine, soybean milk and baba (cakes made from kinds of grains), and visit Matou Village to attend a traditional wedding banquet of Buyi people, which is still held as it was 1000 years ago.

Tips: Kaiyang County’s Rural Tourism Cultural Festival opens in middle March and lasts to October each year, during which kinds of colorful ethnic activities and contests are held, such as photo festival, Buyi singing & dancing contest, drifting invitation meet, bullfight performance, and the like.

--- By April (VisitOurChina)