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“Night time boat trip”
Review of Cormorant Fishing

Ramsey, NJ
Level Contributor
131 reviews
39 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 113 helpful votes
“Night time boat trip”
Reviewed 10 November 2013

The Cormorant birds are black birds that the fishermen train to catch fish. Each bird has a string necklace around its neck to prevent the birds from swallowing the larger fish that it catches. The bird dives under water and when it catches a fish hops back onto the bamboo raft. The fisherman then removes the fish from the bird's throat. The tourists watching the demonstration are on a separate boat (like a ferry) which travels at the same speed as the fishermen on their bamboo rafts. There are multiple photo opportunities to take pictures of the birds, rafts and fishermen prior to and during the boat trip. Definitely something unique.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
4 Thank Ramseytraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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39 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
Chengdu, China
Level Contributor
540 reviews
225 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 285 helpful votes
“Different and fascinating”
Reviewed 28 October 2013

This traditional method of fishing, using tame birds with neck restrictors (so they can't swallow the fish) is declining so I jumped at the chance of seeing it in operation. I did see a few people fishing on the river earlier in the day but this was night fishing. Yes you are sat on a quite noisy boat as you follow a single fisherman with a compliment of seven birds as he fishes the river for about 40 mins. Not everybodys idea of fun but I loved it.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank MattwalesNorthWales
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Timmins, Canada
Level Contributor
167 reviews
67 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 152 helpful votes
“Very interesting trip”
Reviewed 1 July 2013

I realize that my review will contradict the others but I really liked this trip.
First of all there were just five of us on the boat-plenty of room to move around and see everything... Second-the birds were amazing and were working for about 40min. My impression was that they were enjoying diving...
They were treated well. I know- they are made to regurgitate fish but were given beef instead which they clearly prefer and which is much more expensive then fish...
Finally, our local guide told us that this is not true that cormorant fishing is done for tourist only. The local people still use it to get food... In fact, during our very early Li river private boat tour we saw them doing just that at 5am. It's nice to know that the old traditional method of getting food is alive and is being used... It is also perfectly justified historically and morally -our local guide told us that not until 10-15yrs back the local farmers used to eat meat once a month and that school children had to go to the local forest after the school to collect the berries to feed themselves... There were no MacDonalds...

Also, while our boat was coming back after the cormorant fishing, we enjoyed the magic view of the night Li river and took amazing pictures from the island...

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
Thank Piramidon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Katonah, NY
Level Contributor
365 reviews
210 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 423 helpful votes
“How did I forget to review this?”
Reviewed 14 June 2013

As another reviewer said, this was supposed to be an authentic experience, but it was pretty lame in reality. I was expecting rafts with traditional lanterns reflecting on the water. Instead we got a horrible, beat up, smoky and incredibly noisy boat that went up along side a fisherman in a little motor boat who fished with his birds for about 10 minutes. Then we all pulled up on shore and the fisherman made the bird regurgitate the fish. It was in fact interesting to see the process, but as far as atmosphere, it gets 0.The most disappointing experience of our trip, which is probably why I forgot to review it! It did however illustrate the process of cormorant fishing quite well, so for that it almost gets a three. If you choose to see cormorant fishing, be sure to go to an authentic outing, which must cost a lot more than the rubbish we paid for.

Visited July 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank lindagaf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hong Kong, China
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Was supposed to be the highlight, but in reality was a low”
Reviewed 28 May 2013

One of my primary reasons for visiting Yangshuo was to get up close with these cormorant fisherman and get some iconic shots for my photography blogs.

I decided to goto XingPing where there is a little island and I was told that every night the fisherman will come upto the island and do their thing. Little did i know that is only a show for the tourists and involves some very bored looking old men (one fell asleep actually half way through) throwing their nets time after time into the water for people to take photos. There were about 40 of us on this tiny little patch of land in the middle of the river all fighting for space to take photos. It went against everything I enjoy about photography, which is the relaxation and slow pace of enjoying taking photographs. This was chaotic with American tourists shouting at others about getting in their shot and people tripping over tripods.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank Shinrya
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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