Enjoy a cultural tour along the South China Historical Trail

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Around Guangdong,

there are many historical trails of different sizes.

Like vessels or umbilical cords,

long or short, complete or incomplete

they lie on the ground of Lingnan region,

narrating the 2000-year-long history of exchange 

between Lingnan region and Central Plains. 

On April 14, a launching ceremony of South China Historical Trail Cultural Tour was held in Lanzhai Village, Yunnan County, Yunfu City. The tour aims to revive the heritages and integrate the historical and cultural resources along the historical trails. 


At the launching ceremony, a map of South China Historical Trail was released, along with eight tourist routes. The routes are Nanxiong Meiguan Historical Trail (南雄梅关古道), Ruyuan Xijing Historical Trail (乳源西京古道), Chaozhou Raoping Xipian Historical Trail (潮州饶平西片古道), Shantou Zhanglin Ancient Port (汕头樟林古港), Guangzhou Conghua Qiangang Historical Trail (广州从化钱岗古道), Zhuhai Qi’ao Historical Trail (珠海岐澳古道), Jiangmen Taishan Mei Family Mansion – Haikou Port (江门台山梅家大院-海口埠), and Yunfu Yunan Nanjiang Ancient Waterway (云浮郁南南江古水道). 

As an important link of the communication and exchange between Lingnan region and Central Plains, the historical trails used to serve in transportation, military matters, or commerce. They are living fossils of Guangdong’s civilization history and representatives of Lingnan culture. 

Now the historical trails may no longer be of great economic importance, but they are still in focus because of their unique culture and becoming longing tourism destinations gradually. 

To give you a glimpse of how amazing these historical trails are, we would like to introduce the culture, scenic spots and delicacies along Yunfu Yunan Nanjiang Ancient Waterway, one of the eight tourist routes mentioned above. 

Yunfu Yunan Nanjiang Ancient Waterway


Nanjiang Ancient Waterway is 28.5 kilometers long, spanning from Nanjiangkou Wharf through Lanzhai Village to Dawan Ancient Wharf in Yunan County, Yunfu City. 

As an important part of the ancient Maritime Silk Road, Nanjiang River has been a key waterway connecting Yunnan County and Guangzhou since ancient times. It is also an important passageway for the cultural fusion of the ethnic Han and the Baiyue, so it is a perfect place for you to know the ancient Baiyue culture. 

According to historical materials, Nanjiang Ancient Waterway is mainly composed of Dawan Ferry Crossing, Hekou Ferry Crossing, Liantan Ferry Crossing, Xiaoyou Ferry Crossing, and Gupeng Ferry Crossing. Now along the Waterway there are still 5 ancient wharves, 5 ancient courier stations and 2 post stations. 


Along the Waterway, you can encounter Dawan Old Folk Houses—a national key cultural relics protection unit with unique Nanjiang cultural characteristics, ancient building complex in Lanzhai Village—a provincial cultural relics protection unit, Hekou Modao Mountain relic of ancient human activity—one of China’s top ten archaeological findings in 2014, Guang’er Mansion which is hailed as the “old castle of the Qing Dynasty”, Cheung Yuen-fan Temple that was built in the the 6th year during the reign of the Wanli Emperor in the Ming Dynasty. 


Along the Waterway, there are many swinging and profound culture and customs, such as Nanjiang wedding custom, Liantan Piaose, Dough modeling, Helou dance, and finger painting

Besides, Yunan is also famous for some special delicacies, including Liantan stuffed bean curd, alkaline water zongzi, and more

By visiting Nanjiang Ancient Waterway, you can experience ancient Baiyue culture, appreciate the rich natural resources in the county, dig deep into the history and of folk culture the region, and have a fascinating trip of archaeology. 

Location: Nanjiangkou Town, Liantan Town, Dongba Town, Songgui Town, Hekou Town and Dawan Town in Yunan County, Yunfu City. 



Take Nanning–Guangzhou High-Speed Railway to Nanjiangkou Station. Then transfer to one of the following loca bus. Please refer to www.12306.cn or service hotline 12306 or 12306 APP for the ticket and departure time information of the HSR. 

* Nanjiangkou Station – Luoding (南江口高铁站-罗定)

First bus: 10:05, last bus: 17:45, route: Nanjiangkou – Liantan – Hekou – Dawan (南江口、连滩、河口、大湾)

* Luoding – Nanjiangkou Station (罗定-南江口高铁站)

First bus: 7:50, last bus: 15:45, route: Dawan – Hekou – Liantan – Nanjiangkou (大湾 河口 连滩 南江口)

* Liantan – Nanjiangkou Station – Ducheng (连滩-南江口高铁站-都城)

Departure time: 8:00-18:00, every 30 min, route: Liantan freeway entrance – Nanjiangkou Station – Dali – Luopang (连滩高速出入口、南江口高铁站、大历、罗旁)

* Ducheng – Nanjiangkou Station – Liantan (都城-南江口高铁站-连滩)

Departure time: 8:00-18:00, every 30 min, route: Luopang – Dali – Nanjiangkou Station – Liantan freeway entrance (罗旁、大历、南江口高铁站、连滩高速出入口)

* Nanjiangkou Station – Deqing (Decheng) (南江口高铁站-德庆(德城))

Departure time: 8:25-20:10, route: Nanjiangkou – Xijiang Bridge – Decheng Town (南江口 西江大桥 德城镇)

(by Monica)

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Further reading: About South China Historical Trail

South China Historical Trail was the trail constructed before 1913 within Guangdong Province, which was used for transferring of documents and letters, goods and people. Originated in the Qin and Han Dynasties and developed through the Song and Yuan Dynasties, the Trail reached its peak time of development in the Ming and Qing Dynasties. A developed South China Historical Tail network was established, with rich historical and cultural contents and of great historical significance.

In order to implement the strategy of “reviving the heritage exhibited in the vast area of land in China” proposed by President Xi Jinping, in recent years, Department of Housing and Urban-Rural Development of Guangdong implemented a series of projects to protect and utilize the South China Historical Trail, aiming at lining the sections of the trail dispersed in different parts of Guangdong and exploring unique trail culture combining the traditional culture of different regions of Guangdong and their geographical features, to eventually revive the Trail.

To carry out the protection of the Trail is of great significance to integrate the historical and cultural resources of the regions along the Trails, enhancing the influence of the history and culture of Guangdong province to the “Belt and Road” Initiative, to exhibit the characteristics of Linnan Culture, to promote the sound economic development of the counties, to better implement the targeted poverty alleviation strategy and to improve the living environment of people in rural area. It is also an important measure to implement strategy of “preserving the historical root, and inherit Chinese Civilization” proposed by President Xi Jiping.

Related news:

Not so pretty but delicious food in Yunan County

Traditional culture and customs along the Nanjiang Ancient Waterway



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