Continued from the previous blog…
Everywhere we looked the scenery urged us on to the next perspective as we hiked toward Ping’An, a small village surrounded by the Longji Rice Terraces. The view just kept getting better the further we walked. Our guide, Lilly Lu, explained that we were in an ethnic area of the Zhuang and Yao minority peoples.
Houses in the area are very large 3-storey wooden buildings, large enough for the family, food stores, and their animals. In addition to growing rice, we saw sweet potatoes, corn, beans, passion fruit, peppers, and tomatoes in the fields. Chickens were seen (and heard) everywhere while ducks swim in the rice paddies. You hear them more than see them. A few horses hauled in sacks of building materials, as there are no roads into the villages.
We’d read that the rice terraces in this area are the most vertical in the world and have been farmed for 600 years. The rice is used exclusively for the people in the villages. However, since tourism revenue is quite important to the area, the government determined the rice should be harvested only after Golden Week ended. We were lucky to see the fields in full “Technicolor.”