This province’s stunning landscapes have been the inspiration for art and literature for centuries. The terrain includes karst formations, jagged peaks, dramatic valleys, and terraced rice fields. The diversity of its landscapes is matched only by the diversity of its people. Approximately 35% of the population is made up of 17 different ethnic minorities.
Guiyang is the capital. It's situated on a plateau on the Nanming River in the the central part of the province. Near the center of the city is Qingling Park, a fantastic mixture of tranquil forests, old temples, wild monkeys, ornately decorated pavilions and, at the foot of the mountain, man-made Qianling Lake.
Eastern Guizhou is the place for village hopping. The misty hills and river valleys around Kaili are where many minority groups reside, including the Miao, Bouyei, Dong, Yi, Shui, Hui and Gelo. Festivals are common; They often last for days and include singing, dancing, horse racing, and, of course, local food—unique for its strong combination of spicy and sour. One of the biggest is “Lusheng Festival.” (The lusheng is a reed instrument of the Miao people.) Others include “Dragon Boat Festival” and “Sister’s Meal Festival” (a coming-of-age and matchmaking ceremony).
Western Guizhou is famous for caves and waterfalls. Zhijin Cave is the largest cave in China and one of the biggest in the world. It’s a cathedral-like space with otherworldly rock shapes and spirals. Nearby, are the Huangguoshu Waterfalls. The waterfalls are part of a cave and karst complex, but it’s the falls themselves that are the true reason to come. The sheer amount of water creates a cacophony of noise. You can also see misty rainbows dancing in the pools at the bottom.