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All reviewsplace to stayparking lotrice fieldswell worth the effortthe ownerclean bedmini vanonly stayed one nighthour hikeping'an villagefabulous viewsenjoyed our staytop floortoiletnoiseguilinhiking
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Reviewed 25 July 2013

My partner and I visited this Inn recently. We were extremely grateful for Hannah's excellent communication beforehand, helping us to organise a car from Guilin airport to Dazhai and offering her advice as she wasn't able to be at the Inn when we were there.

After being dropped off at Dazhai, it is very easy to ask one of the local women to help with carrying bags up to the village of Tiantouzhai - we were told that 30-40rmb per bag was about standard, so we agreed on 40rmb, as we had quite large, heavy bags but after walking with two of the women for about 45 minutes uphill and watching them struggle and sweat, we ended up paying both of them 50rmb each and still didn't feel like this was anywhere near enough for their hard work!

We struggled to communicate with Hannah's cousin, as our level of Mandarin was nowhere near sufficient enough and he spoke very basic English. We asked how to get to the different viewpoints and were literally just told to turn left! Luckily, if you step out of the Inn, go left and up the hill, you will eventually come to signposts (thank goodness or we would have been stuck!) I can't believe that it is possible for anyone to get lost finding their way - there are frequent signs along the path and if the road splits and you're not completely sure, just follow the most obvious route and if you don't see a sign within a few minutes, turn back and try the other route!

Viewpoints 1 and 2 were walkable within about 40 minutes and 30 minutes respectively (although we did stop A LOT to take photos so you could definitely do it in a much shorter amount of time if you wanted to power ahead but I don't recommend that as you need to stop and take stock of the beauty around you!)
Viewpoint 3 is apparently meant to be around an hour and a half's walk away, but we didn't go there as we were only staying overnight. It is also the point at which the new, hideous eyesore that is the cable car station is located - I understand that they are trying to make things easier for tourism but it was such a pity to see something so unnatural in what is otherwise a remote, countryside location!

As other people have said, you won't sleep well here due to the noise (hence why we only chose to stay one night!) - you can hear the TV from the room next door as though you are watching it with them, you can hear people talking outside until late into the night, there is no way to walk down the hallway or open/close a door without waking someone and the floorboards are extremely creaky. I must admit that whilst we didn't think there would be air con, we hoped that there would be a fan due to the 35 degree heat in the Summer but unfortunately there isn't. You have no choice but to sleep with the window open and whilst it does get SLIGHTLY cooler in the evening, personally I didn't feel like it was cool enough to have a comfortable sleep and we must have had quite a few showers during the day as there was no other way to cool down after walking.

Unfortunately, we didn't enjoy the food - everything comes soaked in oil and makes you feel quite ill when you look at your plate afterwards! But I do appreciate that they are trying to do their best.

Overall, despite our little niggles, you have to remember that you are paying a very cheap price and therefore have to alter your expectations accordingly. The view is of course the most incredible part and it is the breath-taking scenery that will linger in my memory forever.

I would definitely recommend staying in Tiantouzhai instead of Dazhai, as then you get to enjoy the views from the top of the rice paddies looking down, instead of being at the low level and looking up. Whilst we didn't have chance to go to Ping'An village, I read up a LOT before we came and many reviews say that Ping'An is so touristy and that the rice terraces aren't actually quite as beautiful as the ones around Tiantouzhai and I can absolutely agree with the fact that we didn't feel as though we were in a crazy touristy location - there were times when hiking that we felt like the only people around and you certainly do get peaceful opportunities to take in the surroundings.

You won't regret a visit to this beautiful place!

Stayed: July 2013, travelled as a couple
4  Thank nipon4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 July 2013

We stayed here for 4 nights in July 2013. Overall, we thought this was an excellent inn and we really enjoyed our stay here. The staff is very friendly and helpful, the food is delicious, and the view from the rooms is incredible. The inn is about a 40 minute walk from the parking lot, and Hannah (the amazingly helpful owner) will provide you with a map, or there will be local women offering to carry your luggage up the hillside (for around 35RMB) who can lead you there as well. The walls of the rooms are quite thin, so if you happen to be staying there when the inn is full, it can definitely get a little noisy. Also, some of the local women who sell souvenirs inside the inn can be a little pushy when they want you to buy their things. We were happy to buy from them, and did end up buying quite a bit, but they would come over while we were eating our meals and try to get us to buy more, which got a little annoying after awhile. However, everything else about the inn is fantastic, so I would absolutely recommend this place to anyone who is looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of the big cities--Tiantouzhai is one of the most peaceful, relaxing places we've visited in China.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank kt044
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 July 2013

I stayed here two nights on the 21st and 22nd of June 2013. As others have mentioned the hike up there is fairly steep, but it only takes about 30 minutes and it'll prepare you for the hiking you'll have to do to get around the area :) You could also tell yourself that if you'd stayed in Dazhai you'd have to do this every day! Although Dazhai is nice I'd recommend staying in Tiantouzhai for the views and ease of access to hiking paths.

Coming from Yangshuo and Guilin the lower temperature and humidity here at an altitude of about 900m was quite a relief. There were also far less mosquitos, maybe because of all the frogs in the rice paddies? :) Those frogs make quite a racket at night, so in addition to any noisy neighbours you'll have them to worry about when going to sleep. I recommend bringing some earplugs!

The hotel was quite nice though, views are amazing, food is good (especially the bamboo rice), and staff was friendly and helpful. We missed out on Hannah and Jimmy due to her pregnancy, but they were quite helpful by email and Jimmy's cousin was there to meet us when we arrived.

In addition to the nr 1-3 hiking trips I highly recommend hiking to Ping'an, or if you feel it's too long at least 1 hour of the way there, to a small cabin with a "waterfall" next to it. The scenery is just as nice and you'll see less tourists, and this is the best part of that hike. We went all the way to Ping'an then took a minivan back, it cost us 80 yuan but there's also a bus that's slightly cheaper.

I think this region is about to get a lot more tourists: between the new cable car from the parking lot (which takes you to the top of the nr. 3 path, not Tiantouzhai itself) and roads being upgraded and built, it's all set for mass tourism. Some of the new hotels also already use awful neon lighting that ruins the views at night, so get in before it gets even more touristy!

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Sigvic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 July 2013

We really enjoyed our stay at this place. Everyone was so friendly! We enjoyed both dinner and breakfast and were very satisfied. After walking around I am certain that there is not a better place to stay in this area. We stopped here after taking the 3 1/2 hour hike from the neighboring village of Ping'an. Sitting in the dining room after our evening meal and enjoying some cold beverages overlooking the view was really tremendous. It is a very peaceful place. Considering the location and price we were very satisfied with the rooms.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank Doug H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2013

We traveled to this hotel for 30 minutes walk from the car park. I was so disappointed with the long walk but when I saw the place I felt at ease and so relaxing. The air was so fresh and the view was fantastic. I love the food they offered. I really enjoyed the stay and the day after I had my hiking. The scenic spots were so amazing. I love to visit again and stay in same guesthouse. Don't expect too much, just enjoy..

Room Tip: All rooms are good
  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Felicity N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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