Reed Flute Cave
Reed Flute Cave © Bernt Rostad
This limestone cave, about three miles (5km) outside of Guilin, has earned itself a place on almost all travel itineraries for the area. Reed Flute Cave is named for the verdant reeds growing outside, which the locals use to make flutes, but it is famous for what is inside: impressive rock formations that resemble everything from lions and monkeys to the skyline of Guilin itself. Each formation has a name and story. These myths and tales, combined with fantastical lighting, add to the atmosphere of mystery and magic within these ancient caves. Guides take visitors on an hour-long tour through the cave and point out the various formations as well as inscriptions on the wall that date back to the Tang dynasty. Unfortunately, photography is not allowed inside the cave, and visitors should be prepared to wait for more people if they are in a group of less than 20. The cave is situated in a park, with ponds, bridges, and pavilions, which is a beautiful place to relax and wander either before or after the tour. For those travelling near Guilin with children, this is a wonderful attraction for the whole family.