China - South East
redspokes 'Hidden China' adventure cycling holiday begins in Guiyang, the capital of Guizhou province and takes you on a journey of discovery through rural South East China. We transfer out of Guiyang into quiet minority areas where the cycling begins. Following secluded back roads up into mountain villages we discover a world far from the modern face of China.
As many as 30 different ethnic minorities live peacefully alongside one another in the areas we visit in Guizhou and northeast Guangxi, with a huge variety of cultures. Generally, Dong villages are located along river valleys whilst Miao villages are scattered amongst the hills. The minority communities have maintained their cultural traditions over centuries, living simple remote lives, away from modernity and full of character. We discover their world as we cycle South East China through a landscape of rice terraces etched into the mountain, rising up in layers towards the skyline.
The Dong are known for their architecture, particularly the octagonal pagoda-type drum towers (Gulou), and wind and rain bridges that provide shelter for people during bad weather. Built without a single nail, they are the symbol of the Dong people and serve as a gathering place for the villagers to discuss and settle important matters and to stage festivals or entertainments. The Miao were among the first people to settle in present day China, and among the first rice farmers in China.
Having cycled the remotest of settlements up in the hills, and experienced inspirational, breath-taking mountain scenery we bicycle down away from the rice terraces towards Guilin. From here we journey alongside the tranquil waters of the Li River and into the hilly landscape of Karst limestone peaks to Yangshuo where our South East China cycling tour ends.
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Day to Day Details
- Dramatic stepped mountain rice terraces.
- Dong and Miao villages.
- Drum towers, wind and rain bridges.
- Karst limestone peaks.
- Famous Scenic Li River views.
- Guilin: Reed Flute Cave.
This map is for illustration purposes only and may not show the exact route taken on this tour.