Luigong is a small Ming Dynasty-era village on the Li River near Yangshuo, China. This remarkable village would be a major tourist attraction if it weren’t so far off the beaten path. Yangshuo itself is generally not known to many American travelers, and Luigong, many kilometers away, is virtually unknown. The village does have a small restaurant for the few tourists who reach the village, either by bicycle tour (like we did) or by a small boat ride on the Li River. On the day of our visit to Luigong, the Li River had flooded and was shut down to boat traffic, so we had the village and the restaurant all to ourselves.

The restaurant sits on a platform overlooking the Li River and the village’s small boat dock. Two garden-variety Chinese dogs kept us entertained as we waited for our food. I say garden variety because these two dogs looked like ALL THE OTHER DOGS in the Chinese countryside. The wait was long, but we didn’t care. This is one of the most exotic and interesting restaurants we had ever visited. It was explained to me that my order of eggs and pork took a long time to prepare. I’m not a Chinese food eater and was just glad they had Coca-Cola. But my order was delicious and remains one of the only Chinese food meals I have ever enjoyed! Our dining experience was further enhanced by watching locals who gathered near the dock and also by several men who killed a snake below the restaurant’s platform.

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