Ever heard of the Dr Suess mountains? Me neither. Until every American in China wouldn’t shut up about Yangshuo and the mountains there which apparently are the mountains that… inspired? are depicted in?…the book “Oh The Places You’ll Go.” I’ve never read the book, but I’ve seen inspired cakes and party decor so I feel like I have.
See the resemblance?
Anyway now I gotta read it because I’ve seen the mountains now and they are pretty cool. But the books says “go move mountains” and uh… They were pretty big so I just let them lie 🤷♀️ photographed em a lot. It’s also where the photo on the back of the 20 yuan was taken.
Anyway I’m getting ahead of myself. We were told that it was going to be cold, but we were told that by southern Chinese people who…think it’s cold at like 70 degrees. So we packed short sleeves and sandals. Well… bad move, chief. It was actually cold. And it was raining.
We got this hostel that was right across from the Main Street called West Street where we ate and shopped every night and I was not prepared to spend as much money as I did… too many good finds. And good bargains.
Actually, the first night I needed a wall charger because I didn’t bring one and so we found one at this shop for 10 yuan ($1.50) and so I was buying it and they give “lottery tickets” to everyone who buys something and you either win 300 yuan off some Jade jewelry or 900 yuan off some Jade jewelry (apparently there’s only three 900 in every thousand tickets) so I guess I just had to use it toward some Jade jewelry because…when in China. So I dropped some serious cash (like $27) on a necklace valued at $156. Bling bling, son.
The next day, we rented some mopeds from the hostel next to ours and explored the town. We were Ride or Die chicks for a day and It was mainly Ani and I riding and Rachel struggling to go faster than 20 km/h because she isn’t even a licensed driver in the US, much less in China where the lanes are made up an the laws don’t matter.
We tried to follow the map but instead ended up just looking up on maps where to go. It took us out along this beaaautiful farm road where there were fields and mountains all around us and though it was raining, it was so gorgeous. There were cute farm houses
and chickens crossing the road. Typical.
Then we came to a bridges overlooking the river where old ladies sold us flower crowns they made 😍
We then went back to the hostel to warm up and wait for the city to come alive so we could go back out to West Street and drop some more dolla bills.
The next day, we paid some tourism company to take us on a tour because we knew we’d never make it out to Moon Hill, the Gold Water Cave, and bamboo rafting on our own (I would have been a pansy to the cold). In the deal, we got a random tour of the ancient chinese Ma Ling village where we met the Chinese Rapunzel and got super cute keychain pics with the actors.
The whole tour was in chinese so we didn’t really get much out of it, but I did open google translate at one point to use the microphone and see if it would help much, and uhh this is what it translated while she was pointing to a big comb looking thing on the wall
so that ended that method…
We went to this restaurant by Moon Hill where you could look at it and it was cool but randomly at the base of there are just ????
So I looked it up and ????
Anyway the place they took us was fancy and expensive and didn’t have anything we wanted sooo we went down the street and found an outdoor, plastic tablecloth and stools sorta joint and gazed upon the transformers as we downed the noodles.
Then when we got to the cave, the tour guide came to us and said “hey bring all your things and come with me” and nobody else on the bus got off…. so we just went with the guide and she took us to the Gold Water Cave and told us she’d wait for us while we went with this other random group.
It was a sweet cave and there was this one part where there was a giant sphere of some stone and the lady would shine a flashlight on one part of it and then move it and the spot where the light was would stay glowing! Then they had rows of ladies selling that stone in different sizes and styles and they would turn the lights out every 30ish seconds and all the stones would glow!! And I am dumb for not buying a cheap one. Hm.
We went further to the Mud Bath! The lady at the tourism place told us we couldn’t do it because it wasn’t in season but when we got there, the guy told us we could get in, so holla atcha mud bath. It was sooooooooo cool and the fact that it was in a cave was really nice because there were no weeds and freaky stuff growing in it.
Then we got out and walked down to the hot spring! But might I suggest a name correction and say warm spring because it was ~~not~~ hot. ‘Twas a warm bath. But after the weather outside, it was a welcome warm spring.
Then we went home, got warm, and I’m sure you could guess what we did that night…
Our final day had me illin and so we all just started the day the American way (McD’s breakfast) and went to the movies! We saw Venom in 3D and they gave us little lenses to clip onto our actual glasses so we didn’t have to stack pairs on pairs. Classy 👌
Then we spent so much time and money in this ~~adorable~~ postcard cafe where you can mail postcards to yourself in the future and it was so fun I love mailing stuff and I love postcards and writing notes. However I did forget to ask people their addresses in advance so holla to all the people who were up at 1/2am and let me know where to hit em up with the mail.
then of course, as with all my good photograph ideas, I was ~robbed~
Anyway that’s the price you pay for originality.
The food in Yangshuo was really excellent at some places (like the Indian place 🤤) but there was this one place that had garlic bread (and I was on a hunt for garlic bread) so I sprung for it and… tbh coulda waited a month for the real deal.
Bone app the teeth, am I right?
Anyway, this vacation went way over budget on food and souvenirs but it delivered and I got no regrets. Except the one where I forgot to pack a freakin jacket.
And of course it is now Engrish Time
Also one night, we happened upon a lady throwing out prizes and stuff for idk what reason because I don’t understand Chinese but you are now lookin at the proud owner of a selfie stick