Yangshuo… Yangshuo is together with Zhangjiajie and Jiuzhaigou one of the most beautiful places in China. The beautiful karst hills, green fields and charming Li-river give it a unique romantic and poetic atmosphere.

In ‘BoB vs. …’ I write short stories about adventures & outdoor activities. This time a story about BoB vs. the Karst Hills in China!

Although the surroundings of Yangshuo are a great place to unwind and relax, the village itself has become quite toeristy. It’s full of shops, restaurants and hotels (Khao San Road-style). I also went Khao San Road-style and stayed at the infamous Monkey Jane hostel. The only party-hostel in town with beer pong rounds every night.

Fortunately, besides partying the hostel also offered other activities such as cycling, rafting and rock-climbing. These were no official tours, but it was more like “There is this dude who wants to go rock climbing, wanna join?” “Yes”, of course I wanted to join! I hadn’t tried rock-climbing before, but I’d heard Yangshuo was the rock-climbing heaven of Asia with over 500 sport climbs!

Sunset Yangshuo. ©Bunch of Backpackers

After getting gear and instructions of our three likable and muscled Chinese guides, we could finally give it a go. It was more difficult than I initially thought: ‘Where to put your hands, where to put your feet, how to divide your weight and strenght’? And how come the other (professional) climbers looked so beautiful and graceful while I felt (and probably looked) so clumsy?

Besides feeling clumsy, it was a great day with a fun easy-going group. We did 3 different challenging routes and afterwards we went for drinks and swimming in the Li-River with our guides! A perfect ending of our active day!

SCORES (OUT OF FIVE STARS)

‘NEVER AGAIN, SCARY AS HELL’ LEVEL * 
‘NEED TO BE IN GOOD SHAPE’ LEVEL ***
‘FUN’ LEVEL ****
‘SUPERBE LANDSCAPES’ LEVEL ***

Manouk rocks rock climbing ;)! ©Bunch of Backpackers

Me rocking rock climbing ;)! ©Bunch of Backpackers

Rock climbing ©Bunch of Backpackers
Rock climbing ©Bunch of Backpackers

About rock climbing in Yangshuo

There are many companies offering rock climbing trips in Yangshuo. Make sure to ask around and see what’s included: How many routes will you be doing? What’s the level of the routes? Does it include lunch? How many hours will you be climbing? Does the guide speaks English? etc.

To really experience and see Yangshuo’s beauty it’s extremely important to go out of the village. If I’d go back now I would also opt for accommodation in a rural area. Besides rock climbing there are many other outdoor activities around Yangshuo. You can do great hikes and walks, cycle around the area, go rafting, tubing and much more!

Recommended further reading
Rock-climbing the karst hills near Yangshuo, China
The pros and cons of a homestay abroad
Jiuzhaigou, the most beautiful place in China
Photo essay of the Transmongolian Express

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