This rustic village near Guilin shows what life was like about 50 years ago near Guilin. The village had a reputation for producing good scholars for the Qing Dynasty government. You can see old houses, many of which originally date from the Qing Dynasty era (1644-1912), and hike around the village where life doesn’t seem as modern.
It is said that Zhou Dunyi (1017–1073) (周敦颐, Zhōu Dūnyí) who was an important Chinese Neo-Confucian syncretistic philosopher during the Song Dynasty era is the ancestor of most of the people in the village. If this is true, it seems strange since he was born in Hunan Province and died in Jiangsu Province. It is said that the Jiuwu 九屋 Village has a 800-year history. Most of the people have the last name of Zhou. It is said that the people had a tradition for scholarship and produced many who became scholars.
This farming village is becoming a tourist site around Guilin. People can hike to it through ethnic communities to the north. Some people are being relocated. But the Jiangtou Ancient Village part of Jiuwu Town doesn’t have big hotels yet. People can lodge in guesthouses. A lot of old people live there, and you can see what more traditional Chinese life was like.
Jiuwu Town is about 32 kilometers or a 45 minute car ride north of Guilin. So it is close enough for a quick trip. Many tourists go to town of Yangshuo to the southwest, but the area north of Guilin is even more interesting to see because of ancient villages, places to hike, and the ethnic minority groups that live north of Jiuwu Township. The scenery and the sight of farmers working with buffalo and old houses is worth a short hike.
You can walk around in the maze-like village with narrow alleys. The conditions seem primitive. Some of the walkways are paved with stone pebbles. You may see mirrors at the doorways to drive away ghosts. You can see intricate wooden doors and beautifully shaped roofs and watch people play a game called mahjong.
Tours: A day tours can be arranged by private vehicle for as little as 140 RMB or 23 USD for a single individual. It is even less for groups of two or more. The day tour includes meals and a guide. Travel in an air-conditioned vehicle takes only about 45 minutes.