Guilin Travel Tips - Helpful hints and advice on local destination information
Customs and etiquette
Etiquette in Guilin is as with elsewhere in the country. Chopsticks are ubiquitous and should not be placed poking out of the bowl, or used to point at people or things; rice is shoveled in and not eaten with the hands and tipping is not the done thing at a noodle stand.
You'll be better received if you dress smartly, have clean shoes in particular, and also don't raise your voice. Tipping will be expected by porters and restaurants in the smarter hotels.
RMB (yuan), the currency of China, can be bought and sold out of China, usually in a travel agent of Chinatown in your home town. You can change money at all major airports in China and at banks, although should avoid changing at hotels.
ATMs are now ubiquitous and most will accept foreign cards with a small charge. To minimize being charged twice, consider banking with a bank in your home country that does not charge for withdrawals in a foreign country. Travelers checks are not that popular in China and will need to be exchanged in banks, such as the Bank of China. Credit cards are accepted in the bigger hotels and shopping malls only.
Guilin is in the south and has a subtropical, monsoonal climate, with hot and humid summers (June through September), cold winters (December through February), and pleasant enough spring and fall. May and June can be pretty wet with lots of rain, as can September and October, although these times are usually better than the summer. The months of November and April are generally the nicest.
There is no subway system in Guilin, with buses and taxis the chief form of public transport. Buses are good for those on a budget and run to all attractions and parks, with services that are preceded by a ‘5' being free. Bus 58 is particularly popular with tourists as it runs from the train and bus station to take in many top attractions. Taxis are cheap and reliable, for the most part, and can be hailed anywhere.
Liangjiang International Airport (KWL) is the gateway to Guilin, receiving flights from big cities like Hong Kong, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, Seoul and Osaka. The cheapest option to town is to take the dedicated airport bus, which terminates just south of downtown, while taxis are also on hand – be sure to have the name of your hotel written in Chinese for the driver.
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