I hate crowds. I hate group tours. I hate large cities. I enjoy quiet conversations, scenic locations and nature.
Towards the end of my research in the U.S., I discovered Mulan tours – a small, customizable, English and Chinese speaking, tour company located in this region of China. I exchanged emails with Mulan a few times and we set up a private tour of Yangshuo on a specific day.
Jane, our guide for the day, encouraged us to let her know whenever we saw something that interested us and she would stop the car. Try doing that with a busload of people.
Our daylong private tour included a stop for lunch. Jane hesitantly asked if it was ok for her and the driver to join us for lunch or would we prefer they sat at another table. It has always irritated me that quite often tour guides, and especially drivers, are expected to sit alone. I eagerly invited them to join us. It was another chance for me and Jane to inquire about each other’s cultures. Our table was riverside with wonderful views of people on rented bamboo rafts. The most entertaining, was watching a bridal couple, in various changes of outfits, having their wedding photos taken aboard one of these rafts. The lunch was excellent. In fact at the end of the meal, I told Jane to tell the owner that this was the best meal I had yet experienced in China.
After lunch, we walked a short distance through the village to an ancient bridge . Jane said it was more than 1,000 years old - Yulong Bridge To an American whose entire country history is nowhere near that old, a 1,000 year old structure is quite impressive. And it was picturesque.
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