I specifically chose a tour offered by the company China Spree, so that I could take a hiking tour of the Dragon Spine Rice Terraces. (I didn't find another company that offered the experience.) Although the day was occasionally misty, the weather was warm, and the views were beautiful. Over centuries, the Zhuang and Yao minorities have sculpted step-like terraces for growing rice in the hills of Southwest China. In the Spring, when I was there, the terraces are filled with water. On my next visit, I would love to be there in the Fall, when the rice ripens, and the terraces are golden waves.
We hiked between the villages following stone paths. (There are rides available for those that can't quite make the climb.) At the top we enjoyed not only the gorgeous views, but sweet Longji Tea. On the way down, we stopped for lunch, sampling among other local dishes, bamboo rice. For me, the day was everything that I had hoped it would be.
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