Longji Terrace

On August 23, 2011, in Guilin, Nature Scenery, Valleys and Scenic Spots, by Jack Li

The Longji Terrace is 22 kilometers away from Longsheng County and 103 kilometers away from Guilin, with a total area of 66 square kilometers. The terraces are distributed between the height of 300 meters and 1100 meters and the degree of the slopes is mainly from 26 to 35, while the steepest can be 50 degree.

The terrace is comparable to a shell, forming tier upon tier some small some, big layers. Watching it from a far distance, the beautiful curve of the terrace, is strip by strip, and stream by stream, paralleled or crossed. The twisted layers are like spiral shells, the misty ones like cloud tower, showing the breathtaking line of beauty. The lines are natural and smooth, unrestrained and fluency; the scale is majestic and magnificent. The Longji Terrace is known as the “the world’s best terrace”.

All the areas covered by soil develop terraces, from the rapid river valleys to the mountain tops with white clouds and from the edge of the forest to the edge of the cliff. The vertical height is five or six miles, while the width riches as far as five or six miles. The rolling and towering mountains climb to the sky step by step. The terrace is like a giant abstract painting between the sky and the earth. Everyone who has seen the breathtaking landscape is shocked. It is a shock which is beyond words and caused by the splendor of nature and mighty power of human beings.

Here we can see different sceneries all around the year. In spring the fields are filled with water; in summer, the green leaves are like arranges of green waves flowing from the sky. In golden autumn, the piles of heavy wheat, are racks of golden tower; and in midwinter, a timely heavy snow promises a good harvest and is like circles of white jade building on the cloud front. The picture deserves the title of the most marvelous spectacle on the earth. However, the most interesting thing is that in the vast world of terrace, the biggest field is no more than one mu and most of the fields are broken blocks of field which can only grow one or two rows of wheat. Here comes the saying “Coir raincoat can cover the field.”

Longji Terrace Attractions

Jinzu Zhuang Village

Huangluo Yao Village

Longji Terrace Mysterious Story

1. Terrace

It is said that in this place, one harsh landowner said to the farmer that he could not call it a day until he had ploughed 206 pieces of land. However, after a whole day work, the farmer just finishes 205 pieces. He had no choice but to pick up the coir raincoat on the field and get ready to go home. Yet to his surprise, he found that the last piece of field was just under the coir raincoat.

You can never imagine, how the first settlers here of Zhuang people and Yao people, over 8oo years ago, facing the deep mountain and depending on the primitive slash and burn agriculture, struggled to developed the first piece of terrace. The temptation of rice is so strong that their descendants carried on the work of their forebears with no hesitation. Day by day, year by year, is it the most satisfying thing for them to hear that another new piece of terrace has been cultivated whilst reaching into their later years they are still able to play with their grandchildren. From the Yuan Dynasty to the early years of Qing Dynasty, as long as 650 years, it will never occur to the ancestors who developed the Longji terrace that the terrace which they cultivated with sweat and toil even lives turn into such a charming and free world of lines.

2. Seven Stars around the Moon

There is one beautiful and sad love story about the origin of Seven Beauties.

Legend has it that there was young man of Zhuang nationality called Star fell in love with a girl of Yao nationality named “Moon”. However, at that time the conservatives in the village thought that the young men and women of Zhuang and Yao nationality could not get married with each other. If they did, they broke the rules of the villages and would be punished by the clan members. To avoid the view of clan members of both sides, they, after experiencing several setbacks, settled down in the mountain area covered by cloud and mist all year long. They cut into the mountain, growing farmland and developing layers of terrace around the mountain. Star and Moon depended on each other and bore children. Before long, they had three boys and three girls and they lived a happy life.

However, the good times did not last long. One day Moon went to chop wood and was discovered by her clan members. Then suddenly at one night, lighting torches in the night, the king of Yao nationality led his clan members and surrounded their hut. They bought Moon back to the Yao village and put her into the prison. The poor Moon, reviled by her clan members every day, missed her husband and children more. She, suffering form and hunger and coldness, became weaker and weaker gradually and finally died with regret. After her death, she was buried in the place known as “moon land” now. One day, Star took their six children to mourn Moon and cried so sadly that the God was moved. Suddenly it rained heavily with lightening and thunder, and strong wind. After the rain, Star and his children all disappeared, leaving only seven hills of different sizes around the tomb of Moon, taking the fancy shape of “seven stars around the moon”.

It is said that Star and Moon and their children went up to heaven and became the moon and stars in the sky, living a happy life. Now, there is a custom in Pingan Country, every August 15, if you fall in love with a girl, then you can tell her secretly to have a date with you on the “moon land”. If the girl also likes you, she will keep the appointment on time. Then watching the bright and clear moon and stars and making a wish, your love oath will come true.

Jack Li

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