Day 1: Guilin/Yangshuo – Xiaozhai Village – Dazhai Village
(Hiking for 2.83 km/1.76 miles, 1.5hrs)
It takes about 2.5 hours driving from Guilin to Xiaozhai Village (3.5 hours from Yangshuo). Xiaozhai Village is nearly an untouched remote Yao village inhabited 150 households with some 1000 villagers who all belong to Yao ethnic nationality and share the common same family name of Pan. You will have a home-made lunch in a local house with a name “Fragrance Inn & Restaurant” before wandering in the village and climbing to a high location for a sweeping view of the terraced rice paddies around.
You then leave Xiaozhai to hike to Dazhai. It takes about 1 to 1.5 hours for frequently-stopped photography hikers. You will stay in a local inn tonight. To wander around in the village to get to know more about Yao people's life, to have a cup of tea to recharge your energy or to have a Yao style foot massage will be the options for you to enjoy the rest time of the day.
Stay overnight in Dazhai Village.
Day 2: Dazhai Village – Zhongliu Village – Ping’an Village – Guilin/Guilin
(Hiking for 12.92 km/8.03 miles, 5hrs)
It is a 2-hour hiking before you arrive at a Yao village named Zhongliu (Middle Six), which is almost the half way of today’s total hiking. For the first half-hour, you need walk uphill until you get to Tiantou Village. As you walk high, a stunning sweeping panoramic view can be enjoyed thoroughly. You will then understand why Dazhai Villages has another name of Jingkeng, literally means “a golden valley”, especially in the season of fall. When you get around Zhongliu Villages, the paths go up and down, which would make the hiking tiring, but always rewarding!
After Zhongliu Village, there are more terraced rice paddies, fir tree woods and elegantly standing bamboos all the way along the path. If lucky enough, you may come across Yao people working in the fields with their buffalo. Their wrinkled but friendly faces, rose-red costumes with the lush-green background will be a perfect picture to illustrate the harmony between human and nature.
When you see a jade-green colored reservoir, which grantees the water resource of the villagers and the rice paddies, appears on your right-hand side, that means there you are! The road turns from a small path to a concrete road. And then a well-paved slate stair way will lead us to the middle of Ping’an, a minority village inhabited some 800 Zhuang people. You will have a bit late lunch before taking your van back to the city of Guilin or Yangshuo.
A 2.5-hour drive will take you back to the city of Guilin (3.5 hours back to Yangshuo). Your two-day hiking ends when you are back to your hotel.