Home : City Guide: Guilin: Attractions: Longsheng & Sanjiang

Dragon's Backbone Terraces & Mapang Drum-Tower

 Dragon's Backbone Rice Terraces

There are about 66 square kilometers terraced fields in southeast of Longsheng, 22.5 kilometers from the town seat, of which the terraced fields in Heping county show a picture of great momentum and imposing beauty, being reputed as 'unrivalled in the world' and made one of the best 20 scenic spots in Guangxi.

Dragon's backbone terrace was first built in the Yuan Dynasty and completed in the Qing Dynasty as the crystallization of the wisdom and labor of the Zhuang people. The terraced fields are built along the slope winding from the riverside up to the mountaintop, with the highest place of an elevation of 885 meters and the lowest 380 meters. The coiling line spirals up from the mountain foot to the top, making the mountain looks like huge snail seen from afar.

Admission Fee: CNY 50

Mapang Drum-Tower

Drum tower is the symbolic architecture of Dong Village. Where there is a Dong Village, there stands a drum tower. The tower is a kind of multi-eave pagoda-like wooden structure, usually in a square, hexagonal or octagonal shape. It has a larger lower body and a smaller upper body with a gourd-shaped auspicious top part. The tower can have three to a dozen of stories, on each of which there are bright color paintings presenting dragons and phoenix, animals and floras, legendary figures and folk myths and other auspicious patterns. The tower is a public meeting place for the Dong people where celebrative and ceremonial events and activities are held.Mapang Drum Tower, Sanjiang, Guangxi

Mapang Drum Tower is located in Mapang Village in the Autonomous Region of Dong Nationality, over 20 kilometers (12.4 miles) from Sanjiang County. Originally built in the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) and rebuilt in 1943, the tower is in a square shape at a height of 13 meters (43 feet) with nine stories. The twelve wood pillars on the outer circle of the tower support the elegant up-eaves on each story and symbolize the twelve month in a year. The four greater pillars further inside the tower, ascend to the top of the tower resembling the four seasons in a year. On the beams and girders are color-paintings of birds, flowers, animals and legendary figures. The top of the tower is covered with tiles with a pair of bird-like decorative structures on the ridge.

On the day of March 3rd or June 6th on the Chinese lunar calendar, the tower will become a festive venue where Dong people get together and hold fantastic celebrations.

Admission Fee: CNY 10

What to Eat in Guilin
Guilin also has abundant local produce and excellent cuisine. Juice runs down your chin when you are relishing the taste of fruits such as Grosvenor Momordica Fruit, Shatian pomelo, summer orange, gingko, moon persimmon or Lipu taro. There are also the so-called 'Three Treasures of Guilin' - Sanhua (three flowers) wine, pepper sauce and fermented bean curd. Additional culinary delights include Guilin Rice Noodles and various other characteristic meat and rice dishes.