Longji Rice Terraces of Longsheng with Dazhai & Pingan Village

Yangshuo consists of many beautiful rice paddies spread across the countryside but they stand rather small against the magnificent views over the steep terraced hills of Longsheng about 200km north-west of Yangshuo, better known as the Dragon Backbone (or Longji) Rice Terraces of Longsheng County. Particularly around and between the villages of PingAn and Dazhai, the views of large wooden lodges on stilts, endless rice terraces cascading down into the valley below and the spectacular backdrop of a 2000 meter high mountain ridge is always an unforgettable holiday experience and includes some of the most beautiful mountain scenery in Guangxi Province.

The Longji rice terraces of Longsheng County are beautiful in every season. Depending on the time you visit, the paddies will be lush green in summer and turn gold yellow near the end of September. During the winter months they might be covered with a blanket of snow and in spring the waterlogged rice fields sparkle in the sunlight. Best times to visit the rice terraces of Longsheng are the beginning of May when farmers start planting and irrigating the fields with water (although you need to be lucky with the morning mist) and the two weeks before the end of the first week of October (National Holidays) when the paddies turn golden yellow just before harvest time.

The longji rice terraces consist of many little minority villages of which Pingan and Dazhai, both part of Longsheng County, are the easiest accessible.

The minority village of Pingan is over 300 years old and in the wooden lodges 200 families are still living in harmony with nature. Besides the famous Pingan village of Zhuang minorities, there is the other less visited region of Dazhai, which is home to Yao minorities. The Dazhai Rice Terraces are located around 25 miles (40 km) away from Longsheng, where you will be rewarded feats of farm engineering going all the way up a string of 2400 feet (800 m) mountains. The 66-square-km network irrigation project was begun by the ethnic Zhuang in the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368), and finished by the Qing (1644-1911).

The village at the foot of the mountain is Dazhai Village. Further uphill the Yao people’s two-story cabins are nestled against the breathtaking man-made wonder. The layout of the village mimics the terraces fields symmetry, giving an appearance that the houses are stacked on top of one another as an integrated part of the land.

After a one hour climb from the valley of Dazhai, you will arrive in Tiantouzai Village and three nearby viewpoints that offer panoramic views of the whole area of the Longji Rice Terraces. Since 2013 Dazhai features a cable car that takes visitors from the valley of Dazhai all the way up to viewpoint nr 3 named the ‘Golden Buddha Peak’. From there starts the pathway that will lead to the crossing of the paths to viewpoint nr 1 ‘Music from Paradise‘ and viewpoint nr 2’ Thousand Layers of Heaven’. Price of the cable car in Dazhai is 70Y for a single way ticket and 120Y return ticket. We can help you to book these cable car tickets from beforehand which can help you skip the waiting lines.

It is also the starting point from the beautiful hike to Pingan for which local guides can be arranged for 150Y a day. For an English speaking guide expect to pay 250-300Y depending on the size of your group and season. This hike trail is mostly signposted but we recommend you to take a guide from particularly viewpoint 3 to nr 2 in Dazhai where a left turn is not marked and you could be up for a long hike up the hill and down on the way to Longsheng.

To find and book the right accommodation in these small villages can be a challenge, few hotels have an own website and if they have an email address, they may not be consistently monitored. To ease this for you we have been exploring the Dragon Backbone rice terraces many times to find the best blend of a convenient location, great views, clean environment, private and attached bathroom, 24h hot water, soft beds, western toilets, air-conditioning, English menu or English speaking staff. Our findings are listed on our accommodation in Dazhai page.

There are 3 ways to get to the Longsheng rice terraces; by tour bus, public bus or by private transportation. It is a bit of a hassle to get to the villages of Pingan or Dazhai in the rice terraces by public bus from Yangshuo since  it requires a stop in Guilin and there is only 1 bus a day during the high season. For all the bus routes, time schedules and pricing see our Directions from Yangshuo to Dazhai or Pingan – Longji rice terraces page.

Longji Rice Terraces map Dazhai Pingan Guzhuang villages

The Longji rice terraces map below offers an overview of the access to and the location of the villages and trails of Pingan and Dazhai. Click on the map for a larger image.

Longji Rice terraces Map Pingan Dazhai

Map Guzhuang, Pingan & Dazhai at Longji Rice Terraces

Getting There: By public or tour bus; mini-van or taxi.
Times/Duration: Minimum one full day; preferable one night.
Entrance Fee: 100Ypp (kids below 1.2m enter for free)
Prices & Booking: For tours or transfers to/from the rice terraces see the relevant tabs on our booking page.

 

Book your Rice Terraces Tour

 

For tours or transfers to/from the rice terraces see the relevant tabs on our booking page.

 

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10 Comments to “Longji Rice Terraces of Longsheng with Dazhai & Pingan Village”

Due to the volume of enquiry comments we receive, only few comments, generally with new & relevant information, will be posted here. We reply to all comments by email.

  1. Dear Sir or Madam. I am thinking about a one-day-trip from Guilin to Yangshuo and back. Would you also offer Guilin as starting point? It should be a private tour with an English or even better German (?) speaking guide + van (2 adults, 2 kids ->4&2 year). Date would be Sep 16th. With the kids there should not be too much hiking. Would you offer something like this? How much would it be? Thanks Julian.

    • Jono says:

      Hi Julian,

      Thanks for the enquiry, we can arrange a day tour from Guilin to Yangshuo and back again, no problem. I’ll need some more details from you so I’ll email you directly with some Ideas.

      All the best,
      Jono

  2. Jeanne says:

    Hi,

    I’ve been to Longsheng in 2005 and remember it was muddy, slippery and quite tough.
    I plan to bring my parents end of April but they’re quite old (65 to 78 years old). Is it suitable for elderly people? Is there another way to see the rice terraces than walking/climbing?

    Thanks in advance.

    Jeanne

    • Yangshuo Insider says:

      Hello Jeanne,

      Thanks to the cable car in Dazhai, the nicest of both minority villages in Longsheng, also the more physically challenged can enjoy the great scenery of the Longji rice terraces. The Dazhai cable car runs directly from the entrance in the valley of Dazhai where the taxi or local bus would drop you off and runs to one of the highest viewpoints of the area, nr3. There near the Immortal Scenery Hotel starts a trail that winds softly up and down the area and along the side of the rice paddies but to reach any of the other viewpoints will still involve a fair bit of climbing. I suggest to hire the services of a local guide who could show you around the light rolling paths in the best condition, be of assistance when needed and could guarantee not getting lost. If you would like us to assist in any of this just send us a reply or an email at info@yangshuo-insider.com.
      Cheerful travels in China and around Yangshuo!

      Cheers,
      Yangshuo Insider

  3. sonia says:

    Hi Yangshuo Insider,

    I would like to know how much it would cost and how much time it would take to travel from Yang Shuo to the Longji Rice Terraces? I would like to arrange for a one day trip to the terraces during the Easter break (18 or 19 April) with transfers and an English speaking guide for one person.

    I was also considering staying overnight from 19 – 20; could you advise on the cost of a reservation at a hote (upper/lower end)l for that night + what time I would return to Yang Shuo on the 20th?

    • Yangshuo insider says:

      Hi Sonia,

      We can organize a full one day tour from Yangshuo to the rice terraces and back with guidance by an excellent English speaking guide for you for just 1050Y by local taxi or 1150Y by private mini-van. The trip takes about 3-3.5hrs each way, we suggest to leave here between 7.0-7.30am and return before dusk at around 18.30 which should get you back here before 22.00. For an overnight have a look at our accommodation in Dazhai page. Price per night would be about 140Y for a double or twin room, middle end. We did not find any hotel worth the premium they charge while all other prices are about the same. The driver would then stay overnight for an extra 200Y. As for your accommodation in Yangshuo surely have a look at The Cosy Garden, beautiful haven in the countryside of Yangshuo right near the center and starting from this March (2014) they will have a guest kitchen and launch an all inclusive breakfast buffet, organized Chinese buffet dinners with the Carpe Diem hostel and all day free coffee and tea!
      Hope the above helps you plan your trip and drop us a line if we can do anything for you.
      Cheers,
      Yangshuo-Insider

  4. Francesca says:

    Hi,

    We were planning to go to the Longji rice terraces from 11-14 October as we completely forgot about the harvest!

    What do the terraces look like at this time? Would it still be worth going or would the terraces be completely bare and not good for photos?
    Thanks!

    • Yangshuo insider says:

      Hello Francesca,

      The farmers will start the harvest tomorrow but it can take up to a week to 10 days to complete the huge assignment. Surely a lot of rice paddies will be emptied but I believe chances are high that not everything will be cleared at the time of your visit, particularly along the hike from Dazhai to Pingan (recommended over the hike the other way around) would still offer good opportunities for great shooting. I would suggest to visit the Longsheng rice terraces as early as possible though, before visiting Yangshuo.
      Hope this helps,
      Yangshuo-Insider

  5. Vallari says:

    Hi,

    We are going to be in Guilin/Yangshuo area and were planning to do a day trip to the Longsheng rice terraces on Oct 8th. Would the rice fields be there or, is the harvesting over? Is it worth going at this time? Please advice.

    Thanks!

    vallari

    • Hello Vallari, each year the farmers start to harvest the rice right after the October Holidays so at the time you plan to visit the Longsheng rice terraces you will actually witness this major task, and while some fields may have been emptied, there will still be plenty of gold colored rice fields left! So yes, definitely worth the trip!
      Enjoy!
      Yangshuo Insider