Guilin is another one of China's must see cities. It's
one of the most popular scenic cities, attracting over 11
million tourists each year. With a history of over 2,000
years, Guilin is renowned for its green mountain peaks,
bursting rock formations, and winding rivers.
Guilin city has a population of 670,000, and is situated
in the northeast of the Guangxi
Zhuang Autonomous Region (Guangxi province) on the west
bank of the Li River (Li Jiang).
The city boundaries was recently increased, and Guilin has
an area of 27,800 square meters. The establishment of the
new city was approved by the State council in 1999. This
further strengthens Guilin's status as a tourist city, and
promotes more economic development in the entire region.
The expansion provided better opportunity for the city to
optimize tourism infrastructure, and improve tourism services.
Brief Guilin History
The earliest beginnings of the city dates back to 300's
BC when small settlement was first established along the
banks of the Li River. During Han Dynasty in 111BC, Shi
An County was established here, and is regarded as the founding
of the city. Few hundred years later in 507AD, the town
was renamed to Guizhou.
During the Ming Dynasty, Guilin became the capital city
of Guangxi Province; however, in 1914, Nanning city was
designated as the capital city of Guangxi. In 1981, the
city was listed as one of the four cities for the protection
of historical and cultural heritage, along with Beijing,
Hangzhou, and Suzhou.
Scenic Sights of Guilin City
Almost everywhere you go in Guilin, you will enjoy a picturesque
surrounding of mountain peaks, and rivers. The local geography
is typical Karst Formation (landscape of distinctive dissolution
patterns often marked by underground drainage). The city
is surrounded by scenic mountains such as Elephant Trunk
Hill, Diecai Hill, Seven Star Cave, and Yaoshan Mountains.
It sits on the west bank of the Li Jiang River. Along the
Li River are packed with mountain peaks reaching for the
A well known poet in the Tang Dynasty named Han yu (768
- 820) wrote a poem praising the beauty of Guilin's landscape,
and can be roughly translated as:
The river forms
a green ribbon,
The mountains are jade hairpins.
The translation doesn't do much justice for the original
poem in Chinese, but it's about as close as it could get
in terms of meaning. It is said that since ancient times
the landscape of Guilin is second to none. The great poet
Fan Chengda (1126 - 1193) wrote:
The sights of
Gui Mountains should be ranked first under heaven.
Guilin is famous for four unique aspects:
- Enchanted mountains
- Lovely waters
- Fantastic caves
- Charming rock formations
Along with this, Guilin is famous for four excellences:
- Deep ponds
- Dangerous shoals
- Flowing springs
- Torrential waterfalls