We got up and packed, since it was checkout day. The previous night I’d heard the music playing at reception, and it was a gospl chorus. Very recognisable tune, regardless of the language of the lyrics. I asked the girl behind the counter if she was a Believr, and she responded in the affirmative! Another one in China!
We walked up to the top of a mini mountain which commanded a spectacular view of the city. We’d seen it from our viewing place yesterday, but we hadn’t found the entrance steps. It was a good place to chill and talk. Afterwards we moseyed around and had one last look at the town. And I got to answer a questionnaire about my stay! Great! I love doing those, because the feedback will help the next people who go through there.
We caught an air-conditioned bus back to Guilin. There was another Jackie Chan movie (how many has he made?!) This one was how he was twins, and what happened to one affected the other.
In Guilin we stored our packs at the train station and then went to the big Guilin Palace, with gardens. It was Y50. We mainly needed somewhere to get away from things and to relax for a few hours before the 9:50pm train. It was quite nice and we strolled around the gardens. There was another mountain which commanded a good view of the city. They said it was 306 steps, but I only counted 275. It was very steep but at least we got a good view. Guilin and Yangshuo are like Halong Bay in Vietnam; limestone peaks amongst otherwise flat surfaces.
We found some pineapple on a stick and had a pe-dinner munch. I’d been looking for some ever since Wuhan.
Tea was very nice, and we learned the word for dried yellow tofu, but pronounced with a Guilin accent (ze2zhu2). Then we wandered down to the river and enjoyed ourselves by experimenting with long exposures on the cameras. They can go up to 30 seconds, which is quite fun, and useful for capturing the bright lights across the river.
As we wandered back through the Guilin central square we stumbled upon a pretty speccy water fall display that went over the front of a hotel. Water poured over the front of this 10 storey hotel in time to music and lights. The waterfall was divided into 6 sections which turned on and off independently. Apparently the hotel was quite dilapidated and the owner wanted to do something special that fitted with the local area. I can’t imagine there being anything like this in parched Australia!
The train to Shenzhen was like a soft sleeper but with no door and 6 bunks to a cabin. I think they used a nice one because the Guilin - Shenzhen (via Guangzhou) is frequented by many foreigners.
We’ve had a lovely time. It wasn’t exactly as I expected it, being far more touristy than remote, but was very nice to relax at the end of the Yangtze cruise and all the ciggy smoke that that involved. After this I won’t be too disappointed if we don’t see more of China before we go back; it will be only 7 weeks (at time of writing), after all.