The hike from Dazhai to Ping’an is a great way of getting to know the Longji Rice Terraces (near Longsheng, north of Guilin). If you want to go guided by your own GPS watch, here’s a GPX track for it, too!
(Link to the GPX at the end.)
From Dazhai, the hike goes up through the village, along the side of Tiantouzhai over in the direction of Xishan Shaole. It turns left where the path to the Xishan Shaole viewing area goes right, though, steep up the hill. (At the end of 2019, that path up was a gravel road with quite a bit of new construction around.)
Cresting the hill, one starts walking on small trails through forest and along rice terraces again.
Those terraces are much less touristy, many already harvested in October, when the visited ones are still being left untouched for the tourists (although the rice should have been harvested already).
It continues like that for a while, except for some interruptions. One, at a farm house, where the path takes a strange turn left, past the house. Well, strange… it is not as easy to see as it had been up to that point.
At and through the village of Zhong Lu, I can only advise having the GPS route loaded to follow it; the path goes near a road but not on it into the village, through it past houses in a rather complicated way, then on the road for a little bit and down again off of it. Not easy…
Farther on, there is quite an up-and-down across rice terraces again, and then again more forest paths.
Close to Ping’an lies an area of new, different terraced fields, and then come the last parts on roads that get wider, until they are basically the parking lots for the JiuLong WuHu viewing platform above Ping’an.
The hike is not finished there, one also needs to get down to Ping’an village, where small stone paths again lead through terraced rice fields.
The village proves itself truly commercialized by now, as is being said; the looks of it remain nice, though.
For more impressions and to see the paths to the XiShanShaoLe “West Hills Music” and Jinfoding “Golden Buddha Peak” viewing spots near Dazhai, head over to this post.
To download the GPX, right click on this link and “Save” the file.