Here we are. After a week of Yangshuo’s craziness we have arrived in Xingping; the Yangshuo of twenty years ago, as our favourite local told us. And man was she right. This place is smaller, quieter, and far more authentic and untouched. Evidence of its less touristy vibe mainly comes from the shameless stares we get from just about everyone, occasionally paired with straight up laughter at the sight of our white faces, honking, and calls of ‘I love you!’ from car windows and across the street.
That said, this place resonates much more with us than Yangshuo did. As we head out towards the river everything seems to quieten down. Five minutes into our walk there are no more street vendors. Another five and we’re pretty much the only people out on the street. Every once so often a scooter passes by, occasionally accompanied by a cow or two. We walk for hours, stopping every twenty steps or so to take another picture because ‘it just keeps getting more and more beautiful’. I suppose we will just let the pictures do the talking.