Zhangjiajie are becoming more and more popular for foreign tourists. Now you can see many self-travel tourists in the park with a big hiking bag. Once I was guiding a young girl who worked in Beijing for Three month, and she would soon get back to German. So she chose to visit Zhangjiajie before she leave China. When we wait for the Bailong elevator, we met a young girl also, I said hello to her, she was very happy to see that girl and talk with us. She arrived in Zhangjiajie last night. She came to the park this morning. She got a map, and follow the bus to the elevator, then she walked along the route, but she was very worried she would get lost as she don’t know how far the route was, and where is the next stop, she worried all day during her trip, and she said she didn’t enjoyed a lot, she can arrange her trip as she don’t know when the elevator will closed. She said to the girl I guide: “you made the right choice really need a guide for visiting this park”. Yes, it was, and my guest had a very good time in Zhangjiajie, she enjoyed a lot. Even she was very young and not rich, she choose ask help from a guide. According to my experience of many years guiding, a guide is needed as there several reason:
Firstly, a guide can make your route easy. Zhangjiajie National Forest Park covers an area of 264 square kilometers, famous for its unique peaks, tranquil water and beautiful green forests. Its main scenic spots include the Golden Whip Stream, the Yellow Stone Village, Yuanjiajie Avatar Mountain, Tianzi Mountain, Yangjiajie, Wulong Village, Shili Painting Gallery, Yaozi Zhai and so on. It needs 2 days to visit the main spots. If you haven’t made a good preparation before you coming, you would get lost in the forest. Because it is the forest, tourists need to take the shuttle bus from the entrance gate to the scenic spots, and different buses go to different places, it would be hard if you can’t speak Chinese as the workers can’t speak English.
Secondly, a guide can make the best tour for your own request. Different tourists have different request when they travel, for example, Young tourists may like hiking as they have energy and want take photos while elderly tourist want a leisure tour by taking the cable car and less crowed places. South Asian tourists like a relax route and want taste the delicious local food, while European tourist want take the full advantage of their time to visit and like enjoy the beautiful nature. As a guide, once we know the tourist request, we can arrange a best tour for them. I guided a old couple from Singapore this June, they do exercise everyday in the gym, but they just wanted see some different place from the tour group, so I took them to the Yellow Stone Village, less tour groups in this June, and we took the cable car, they loved the view from the cable car, when we on the top, I just took them to three beautiful platforms, they enjoyed the tour and told to me that’s enough for them for a day. We went back to hotel early at three pm, we didn’t spend much time in the bus, in the long queue for the elevator, but they did have a good time that day. During this August, I guided a couple from Canada. they booked the tour from my company website. The first day itinerary should be take the baillong elevator to the top, but I knew it would be long queue about three hours for tourist as August was the summer vacation. And I got know they like hiking and taking photos, so I suggestion them climb up, so I won’t waste three hours to wait for the elevator. They took many good photos and did enjoy their tour in the park. A guide know better than the tourist, we can give the best suggestions for you.
Thirdly, a guide can help you to know the local culture better. When guiding each tour, I usually told the tourists background of Zhangjiajie, the original of each places in the park, for example. When we visit Tianzi Mountain, there is a platform called Yunqing Rock, it named after the general Helong, A stone boat sitting on a top of a peak, it was very vivid. This place was called West Sea. Then I would told the tourist after rain the fog always rising up from the valley, sometimes you only can see the top part of the peak-the boat, the whole place just like a sea. When visit yellow Stone village, there is a spot called remaining piers of heaven bridge, you can see six plat peaks in a row, then I would told the tourist why it get this name, because once the villages saw a rainbow after rain, it just cross the six peaks, so the peaks like it’s pier, but the rainbow disappeared soon, so they were called remaining piers. Without a guide, you can’t learn about all the scenery background and history. Travel to a place not only for it’s scenery but also it’s culture.
This article provided by our guide, you also can refer to one of our tourist review on Tripadvisor, our guide helped them a lot.