5 THINGS TO DO IN GUIYANG, CHINA
Guiyang (贵阳) is a relatively new provincial capital constantly developing and constructing. On first search, it’s often quite hard to find things to do in Guiyang without suggestions of travelling a few hours outside of the main city – this list provides a list of things to do in the city that you can enjoy solo, as a couple, or as a family. Whilst Guiyang isn’t widely talked about, it does have its own unique features, sights and activities that are worthwhile should you ever visit.
1. Jiaxiu Pavillion
Situated on Fuyu Bridge over the Nanming River, the Jiaxiu Tower is one of the symbols of Guiyang. It’s also called the First Scholar’s Tower. It is a three tiered wooden tower of an exquisite architectural design that has inspired a great number of writers and celebrities in the past.
You can head over the Fuyu Bridge and explore the tower itself, take your great shots from the surrounding areas, or walk around the Cuiwei Gardens next to the tower which includes exhibits and historic works such calligraphy and woodcraft.
The pavillon has become a cultural symbol of Guiyang – its the image that always appears when searching for for pictures of the city. Meaning you shouldn’t miss it when you visit Guiyang.
2. Poly Hot Springs
Want to take some time to relax, take a break and have an amazing experience a the same time? Take a visit to the Poly Hot Springs Resort in Guiyang and experience 5 star treatment whilst you bath in red wine, vinegar, aloe, and so many other flavoured waters. You can spend hours walking around this resort, dipping into each spring that has its own health benefits. Take a hike up to the top of the hill and find a secluded spring looking out over the surrounding area whilst staff serve you hot ginger infused tea.
We visited during October, on a cold grey day and pretty much had the place to ourselves. We loved exploring the Hot Springs, and visited several in the area and Poly was our favourite by far. You can visit the hot springs for the day, or add on a massage or stay at the resort overnight.
3. Qianling Mountain Park/Monkey Mountain & Hongfu Temple
A lot thrown in this option but they are all in the same park giving you the chance to explore for hours. We spent a whole day wondering around the different areas of this mountain park, hiking the hills, walking around the zoo, looking over the lake, but the main feature that this mountain park is known for is the Hongfu Temple & the monkeys.
Hongfu Temple is located near the top of Qianlang Mountain, and can be reached via a stunning 40 minute walk or cable car if you don’t want to do stairs! Hongfu Temple is a Buddhist temple that dates back to the 17th century. Here you can take some time to relax, explore the many pavillions or interact with the local Buddhists living in the temple. A real treat away from the rest of the busy park.
This area is also home to a large population of Macaques. In the walk up to the temple, there are monkeys dotted everywhere, waiting for the next tourist to steal items from. These monkeys, beautiful as they are, are completely used to humans and they will steal any food, any water bottles or anything shiny you have on you. We were aware of this before we went so packed the least shiny items, our dark water bottles and had no food on us – unfortunately other tourists didn’t get this warning and in the space of 20 minutes, several tourists had items stolen, fights with the monkeys, and run ins with large groups. The monkeys can be very friendly and frankly aren’t bothered about you walking around as long as you don’t have something they can take!
These monkeys are so used to human behaviour, that we witnessed several monkeys taking lids off and drinking out of plastic bottles. To which I was amazed, and ashamed that these monkeys knew this behaviour, and saw several tourists encouraging this. If you visit this park, please be aware of what you should/shouldn’t be encouraging our wildlife to do, especially giving them plastic!
Note – It costs 5 Yuan to enter the Qianling Mountain Park & 2 Yuan to get into Hongfu Temple – both can be paid by cash or wechat. You can also get nuts to feed to the monkeys in and outside the parks which only costs a few yuan.
4. Have a fun time taking your instagram shots at the 5D Star Art Museum
You’ve seen the instagram photos of people standing in an infinity room in Singapore & Tokyo right? Well Guiyang has it’s own 5D Star Art Museum as well! The plus with this one, it is relatively new (around a year old from 2019), and you won’t have to wait in a line with hundreds of others to get your insta worthy shots.
This museum incorporates work from Van Gogh, and other impressionist artists with colourful and vibrant pieces of art. Each room is interactive and has something fun/cool for a photo opportunity. You can choose from the stunning infinity room, to floating in the clouds, playing with pink panther, exploring the world of Van Gogh, or jumping in the pink ball pit! A fun activity for rainy days, kids, or if you want to get your shots for instagram!
5. Explore the beauty of Karst Park
One thing Guiyang does very well, the parks. This park is unique with its karst stone features that turn into a maze when you walk around. This small park in the main city gives you a chance to explore and get lost and witness beauty and quiet away from all the towering high rise buildings. Often missed out due to being smaller than the other parks in the city, this one offers true unique features and a good route to walk around.
There you have it, 5 suggestions of fun things to do on your visit to Guiyang. Between September 2019 and May 2020 I will be based in Guiyang – if you have any questions after these dates, please still get in contact!!
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