Located in the south of China,not far from Vietnam, Guilin is one of top ten destinations for both local Chinese and foreign tourist. Its unique scenery, the subject of thousands of paintings in China and has been eulogized in countless literary works.
One of the Most popular attraction is the rice terraces in Longji which is
The terraces look like great chains or ribbons as they wind from the foot to the top of the hill. This ingenious construction makes best use of the scare arable land and water resources in the mountainous area.
If you come at the right time of the year, when the paddy fields are wet or filled with young rice, the views are absolute magic.
The Longji Terraced Rice Fields are located 23 kilometers (14 miles) from Longsheng city. They are the most famous rice terraces in China. Construction started in the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368) and the fields cover an area of over 66 square kilometers (16,300 acres) and at its highest point is 1100 meters high (3600 feet).
Longji (Dragon’s Backbone) Terraced Rice Fields received their name because the rice terraces resemble a dragon’s scales, while the summit of the mountain range looks like the backbone of the dragon. Visitors standing on the top of the mountain can see the dragon’s backbone twisting off into the distance. In a early morning when weather is fine, the sunrise on the summit of Longji Rice Terraces is magnificent.
The terraced rice fields make Longji a paradise for photographers and people interested in China’s minority cultures. In the morning many visitors like to get up early to watch the sun rise above the terraced peaks. During the day time, it is wonderful to see minority women working the fields in all of their colorful costumes.
Longji is spectacular in every season. The best time to visit Longji is totally up to your travel interests. However, Spring and Autumn is most recommended.
In Spring, the rain irrigates the fields, and each field looks like a mirror reflecting the blue sky and fluffy clouds. In Summer, the terraces look like small forests as the bright green rice plants begin to grow to maturity. In the Fall, the mountains are covered in gold as the ripe rice plants wait to be harvested. In the Winter, the whole mountain could be covered with snow making the mountain look like a giant sleeping white dragon (the snow season is short in Longji from Jan. to Feb.).
The Longji Dragon’s Back Rice Terraces have an almost mystical quality to them. As visitors climb walk along the mountain paths, each view that opens up is more beautiful than the one before. The mixture of nature’s beauty, the splash of color from the local women, and scattered villages make Longji a destination not to be missed.
The best time to visit the terraces is said to be in late spring or autumn. Every year after April 15 of Chinese lunar calendar (mid to late May) farmers begin to irrigate the field which brings an amazing view of terraces sparkling with water; and in autumn, usually around the Mid-Autumn Festival (late September to early October) you are blinded by a stunning gold landscape as the rice is ready to be harvested. This is merely opinion, however, as summer brings a beautiful vibrant green color to the terraces as the rice stalks are growing and winter a blanket of snow.
Combine a relaxing cruise on the stunning Li River and enjoy the breathtaking landscape of beautiful limestone hills, tranquil fishing scenes and picturesque villages to the town of Yangshuo which set in the lush green rice paddies of Southern China with Longji.
Explore the beautiful rice terraces and the small minority villages scattered throughout Longji (which is also known as Longshen or the Dragon’s Backbone) and marvel at this amazing spectacle from the impressive viewpoints.
hen the grain is in the ear and during Middle-Autumn are the best times for appreciating the charming natural scenes of Longji Terraces. Most of the residents living in Longji village are Zhuang minority. Rural buildings set on hills and next to rivers as well as bluish flying ribbons worn by the local people decorate the area.
The terraced fields are built along the slope winding from the riverside up to the mountain top. The highest tier is 880m (2900 ft.) above the river while the lowest is 380m (1250 ft.) in elevation. This ingenious construction makes best use of the scarce arable land and water resources in the mountainous area.
Some of the terraces look like great chains, other look like ribbons. They wind from the foot to the top of the hill. The smaller ones are like snails and the bigger ones like towers. There are layers on layers of terraces, high and low. The outline is very smooth. Its scale is enormous. It is called “The champion of the terrace world”.
The coiling line that starts from the mountain foot to up to the divides the mountain into layers of water glittering in the sun in spring, layers of green rice shoots in summer, layers of golden rice in fall, and layers of silvery frost in winter. The terraced fields were mostly built during the Ming Dynasty about 500 years ago.
There are numerous terraced fields, of which the terraced Fields in Longji village show a picture of great momentum and imposing beauty. It is 22.5 km from the county seat and 108 km. from the city of Guilin. The terraced fields are built along the slope winding from the riverside up to the mountain top, the highest part being 880 m in elevation while the lowest part 380 m in elevation.
Longsheng is located 100 km north of Guilin. There are two ways to go there (in fact three): taxi and bus (and in my case by bicycle). If you take the bus, make sure you get dropped at the junction for Ping An. If you have an early bus out of Guilin, it shouldn’t be a problem to hop on one of the local busses which do the Longsheng – Ping An journey regular.