Located approximately 29 kilometers south of Guilin city along Li River is China’s most popular tourist destination, Crown Cave, which is also known as Ganyan Sweet Cave due to the fact that its waters taste sweet. There is a deep stream that runs through the cave and then opens up to the Li River.
The cave takes the shape of a crown and for centuries it has attracted and inspired countless nobles, scholars and writers. Xu Xiake a famous Chinese explorer visited here in 1637, and he is regarded as the first explorer to visit this scenery.
The Mystical Interiors
Crown cave runs for a total of 12km but out of that distance only 3km has been explored and opened up to the public. The cave has been well preserved mainly because of perennial obturation. It is composed of four caves connecting with each other. When viewed from Li River crown cave resembles a hill ahead of the boat. The stalagmites, stalactites and pillars stand grotesque and imposing inside the cave and will arrest your imagination leading you to a fairyland. The purple mist and the overhanging stalactites blend together giving a spacious bright appearance as well as creating a poetic charm that is sure to leave you a lasting experience.
Crown cave has gained an entry into the Guinness book of records due to the numerous ways of exploration. The cave is equipped with modern sightseeing facilities such as railroad, sightseeing elevator, sampans, sightseeing roller coasters, automatic light and sound control guide. With the several exploration methods on offer you will actually be spoilt for choice.
You can decide to travel to the mountainside by rail and then descend into the cave by means of the sightseeing elevator. The palm hall that is found inside the cave is a scene that is definitely worth your visit. Here you cannot help but marvel at the power of nature. The feature that stand out hall in this hall are the palm like stone pillars, one of which is more than 50 meters high and stretches out to the ceiling of the cave. The pillar has a very wide diameter such that it takes a number of people to put their hands around it.
Another option would be to get on a sightseeing pulley to the inside or simply walking to the mountainside by foot and then use a sightseeing elevator to get inside the cave. In the process you will have a fantastic view of the series of caves till you reach the curving bridge. A small boat tour to discover, explore and experience the distinctive scenery of the underground stream is also recommended. There are several other karts landscape features awaiting you once you are ashore.
There is also a small waterfall with a powerful flow that sits deep within the recesses of the cave. To reach this waterfall you can take a boat ride or a train ride. You can actually hear the thundering sound of the water crushing the rocks below in most parts of the cave. There is a viewing platform right above the spectacular falls and you have to pay an additional fee in a nearby ticket kiosk to view this waterfall. Apart from the crown cave the folk craftwork shops, elephant show and the peach and plum garden are really worth paying a visit.
A visit to the Crown Cave would be incomplete without experiencing the bamboo rafting along the Li River. Rafting is a favorite activity for a majority of tourist who visit this enchanting cave. For this reason summers are very busy and crowded.