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Getu River National Park: See Some of the World’s Most Stunning Karst Landscapes

Getu River National Park, or Getu He in Chinese, is in China’s Guizhou province. The area is considered to have some of the most beautiful karst landscapes in the world.

It is a popular place among tourists who travel to Guizhou to see stunning limestone cliffs, karst formations, rivers, and a large number of caves. Aside from marveling at nature’s creations, you can take part in activities at Getu River, including hiking, rock climbing, bamboo rafting.

Fast Facts about Getu River National Park

  • Location: Ziyun County, Guizhou Province, China; 48 miles (77 kilometers) southwest of Anshun
  • Hours: 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Ticket price: CNY 120 ($18.6)
  • Visit time: 1-2 days
  • Best time of the year: March to November
  • Suited to: nature lovers, hikers, adventurers, photographers


Getu River National Park


What to See and Do in Getu River National Park

Dachuandong Cave or Swallow Cave

There are countless natural caves in Getu River National Park. Among them, Dachuandong Cave is the Getu River cave worth seeing the most. Dachuandong literally means a big hole. It is also called Swallow Cave or Swallow King Palace because of the tens of thousands of swallows traveling through and living inside.

From Qingming Festival in early April to Chongyang Festival in the mid-October every year, you can see flocks of swallows flying out of the cave in the morning and returning at sunset. It’s an amazing scene to witness.

Tongtian Cave

Walk along the plank path Dachuandong Cave. It will take you to Tongtian Cave. It’s called a cave, but it’s actually the deepest karst shaft in China. Formed by collapsing of the karst land and erosion by water, Tongtian Cave is 1,214 feet (370 meters) deep and 656 feet (200 meters) wide. Just imagine the height of a 120-story building!

On a sunny day, you’ll see a beam of morning light pouring down from the karst shaft like a beautiful light curtain through a sky window.

Spiderman Cliff Rock Climbing Performance

The spiderman freehand rock-climbing performance in Getu River National Park might just be your most unforgettable memory of Guizhou tour.

The performer, or the spiderman, climbs a 328-feet (100-meter) cliff with wet moss and no safety measures at all. After getting the flag and beating the drum on the top of the cliff, he makes his climb back to the ground. The performance will take your breath away as you watch the spiderman climb with ease. Sometimes, you might be lucky to see a spider woman.

Freehand rock-climbing originated from the ancient burial culture of the local Miao minority group. In ancient times, Miao people practiced a cave burial tradition, when they carried the coffins of the deceased up a cliff to put it inside a cave. Nowadays the skill is passed down for performance.



Chuanshangdong Cave

Located over Dachuandong, Chuanshangdong Cave is 741.5 feet (226 meters) above Getu River. It’s more like a big hole in the mountains; an airplane can fly through it. Chuanshangdong Cave is in fact what remains of the highest ancient watercourse in China.

A 40-minute walk along the steps from Tongtian Cave will take you to the viewing platform of Chuanshangdong. The path outside is full of subtropical plants, making it an awesome spot for photos against the massive cave.

There are dozens of days in a year when a beam of light shines onto Getu River through the Chuanshangdong Cave in the early morning. Would you be the lucky one to witness it?

Blind Valley

On the other side of the viewing platform, there’s a blind valley behind a quiet bamboo grove. A blind valley is an area of trough-shaped concave ground formed through karst collapse. It is surrounded by steep cliffs. There are two more blind valleys covered under the dense forests.

Getu River once flew through the valley in ancient times. Now the virgin forest in the valley is extremely lush with trees, shrubs, vines, and other plants. A blind valley is a distinct landscape to witness once in a lifetime.

Dahe Miao Village

Dahe Miao Village is a small, secluded village in the mountains of Getu River National Park. You can get there by cruise on Getu River or by hiking along the trails. Take in the beautiful natural scenery along the way. You may even come across some ancient hanging coffins on the cliffs.

This ecological Miao village retains their primitive and simple folk customs. You can see a cultural show of climbing a high ladder of swords and join the local Miao people for a welcoming bamboo pole dance. As the birthplace of the intangible cultural heritage of King Yalu Culture, you can also learn about the epic story of King Yalu, the Miao ancestor who built and fought for his kingdom.

Nearby the village, you’ll find a natural lake that changes in color depending on the weather. It can turn cyan, yellow, reddish, etc.


Getu River Spiderman Cliff Rock Climbing Performance
Spiderman Cliff Rock Climbing Performance

How to Get to Getu River National Park

Take a bus from Guiyang to Ziyun County, and then transfer for a local bus to the park. This trip takes about 4 hours.

Or hire a car or taxi. It is more expensive than public transportation, but is definitely a lot easier and saves you a lot of time. Negotiate price with your driver beforehand.

Once you’re in the park, you can hike, take a boat ride, or join a guided tour.

Attractions Nearby Getu River National Park

Zhijin Cave is an amazing karst cave in Zhijin County. It is famous for rock formations and underground rivers. If you’re driving, it is about 2.5 hours from Getu River.

Huangguoshu Waterfall is one of the largest waterfalls in Asia. Visit it in person in Anshun, Guizhou, about 2 hours away by car.

Fanjing Mountain is a sacred Buddhism site in Tongren, Guizhou and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Dragon Palace (Longgong) is a network of underground caves in Anshun. There are incredible rock formations, underground rivers, waterfalls. It’s a popular stop for cave explorers. It is about 2 hours away by car.

Guizhou Tours to Getu River National Park

We can also help you with a customized tour to Getu River National Park in Guizhou.


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