The 600-year-old Yulong Bridge, also known as the Dragon Bridge, is located in the north of Yangshuo in an area surrounded by the hundreds of tall karst peaks, rural mudbrick villages, rice paddies and grazing water buffalos. It is a 60-meter-long single-arched bridge—the biggest of its kind in Guangxi Province—and is shaped like a rainbow bending its way over the languidly moving water. The steps are an uneven jumble and because of its old age, the sides of the bridge are sloping inward. Beneath the bridge, women from the nearby Baisha village wash their clothes and children play in the shallow water. In fact, the area around the Yulong Bridge is perfect for swimming, as the water moves slow, is much cleaner than the Li River and there are many natural pools. Bamboo raft rides are sold directly beneath the bridge, with many locals more than willing to take visitors for a float down the river
It’s really no wonder that this romantic landscape and the charming, antique bridge have quite some folklore attached to it. According to one legend, a student heading to an important exam came upon the river but could not cross it due to a monster living in it and creating huge waves. With the help of the dragon king and his daughter, however, the monster was defeated, so the student went on to take his exam and several years later, returned to build a bridge in thanks. Another legend says that a dragon was so mesmerized by the beautiful scenery that he decided to stay there forever. The locals kept seeing the dragon and decided to name their bridge after him—Yulong literally means “meet the dragon.”
Yulong Bridge is located on the Yulong River about 8 kilometers outside of Yangshuo next to a village called Baisha. As the ride through the countryside is a lot of fun, to get there, most people rent a bicycle or hike along one of the many paths and country roads. If the weather is bad though, it is easy to just take the bus via the main road from the bus terminal in Yangshuo.