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Introducing Guìlín

When it comes to Guìlín and its stunning karst topography, there’s good news and there’s bad news.

The good news is the beauty of this scenic city, celebrated for generations by poets and painters, more than lives up to its reputation. If you can handle the hectic traffic, most of Guìlín’s peaks and parks are a short bicycle ride away and Li River (Lí Jiāng) cruises take in some of the province’s most breathtaking scenery.

The bad news is that rapid economic growth and a booming tourist trade have made it a challenge to enjoy Guìlín’s charms.

Tourist sights levy heavy entry fees and many travellers tell of being grossly overcharged at restaurants. Touts (some persistent) appear at every turn, with many taxi drivers now aggressively in on the game. Humid days create an opaque haze, obscuring even the closer peaks.