Qikou Yellow River Town
Qikou Yellow River Town is an ancient historic riverine town on the banks of the Yellow River in a remote part of Shanxi Province. Even though Qikou is virtually unknown to western tourists, Chinese domestic tourists are beginning to arrive in ever increasing numbers.
We arrived in Qikou after one of those frustrating and often terrifying China back road trips that make you swear to yourself “never again” but you always return for more. On arrival we were rewarded with grand vistas of the mighty Yellow River and seduced by an enchanting classic Chinese ancient town, as yet not converted into a tourist theme park.
Frustrating and Terrifying Journey to Qikou
It had been a frustrating ride because of a huge, infernal traffic jam, caused by one of the thousands of overloaded coal trucks that ply the Shanxi roads, which had rolled over and blocked the narrow, mountainous and potholed road. Terrifying, because our tiny car, dwarfed by the lurching trucks, kept having to dodge them as they overtook each other on blind corners.
However, as we opened the first of many cold beers on the grand terrace of the Qikou Guesthouse, any nasty lingering memories of the trip were soon dispelled.
Qikou is an ancient port on the Yellow River (see our previous article on The Qikou Inn for more information). Nowadays there is scarcely any river traffic; a few sad, rusting boats tied up along the river bank are all that remains of a once thriving commercial town.Continue reading “Qikou Yellow River Town”