Guilin Photography Tour
Guilin Photography Tour
5
About
We're the 1st and No.1 Guilin Photography Tour. Photo guides to the world's top photographers, enthusiasts, intrepid travelers, and total beginners wanting to up their skills. There are 3 main reasons people choose GPT. 1) We've no salespeople and you can plan with an expert photo guide. 2) There's no 9-5 with us! We often set out as early as 3 am to meet our clients at 4am and finish at 8pm. 3)We've won awards, and are hired by the worlds top photographers, journalist, filmmakers.
Guilin, Guangxi, China

Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.


5.0
5.0 of 5 bubbles174 reviews
Excellent
167
Very good
5
Average
1
Poor
0
Terrible
1

johnepowers
Sagamihara, Japan7 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2019
Don't put this on your bucket list ... get out there and do it! You will never regret it ... and you can thank me later!

Andy and Mia are as exceptional and incredible as the exquisite beauty that surrounds the entire Guilin experience, from its incredible sunrises and sunsets to the interactions with the cormorant fishermen and the indigenous people of the area.

From a photographer's perspective, now one knows this incredible place better than Andy and Mia and nobody will ensure you see it at its finest moments like Andy and Mia can. The tour is fantastic, Andy and Mia are amazing, and you will come away with experiences and memories that will last you the rest of your lives.
Written September 6, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Barbara
2 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2019
If I could give Andy and Mia more than 5 stars, I would! My husband and I were part of a photography group tour that they coordinated. Besides being the nicest people you could meet, their knowledge of the area, the people, and the language added up to a fantastic experience. And being experienced photographers themselves, they knew all of the right places and times to capture beautiful shots. They're amazing!
Written September 6, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Vipermaker
Fort Worth, TX3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2019
I highly recommend this tour company without reservation. I am a professional photographer and have taken photo tours in numerous countries and can honestly say that this tour is exceeds them all. The western couple that operate the tour, Andy and Mia, were extremely helpful and wonderful people to work with. Due to their commitment to live in China, learn the language and befriend the locals, we felt completely safe and comfortable at all times. They took care of every aspect of the trip including transportation, food, lodging and scouting of the photo locations. We went with a group of photographers for a nine day tour and all agreed that this was a first class experience. We are seriously considering booking another tour with them to another region of China.
Written September 7, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Robdigphot
Norwich, UK10 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2017 • Solo
Earlier this year I decided to plan a photographic trip to China and after checking trip advisor it became very clear that Guilin Photography Tour were the tour guides to use.
I contacted Mia at Guilin Photography Tour via email and started to plan. Mia was very prompt in answering my many questions and was meticulous in planning a very extensive itinerary whilst taking into consideration all of my photographic requests.

This is where the difference between a standard guide and a photographic guide came into play. Photographers work with light, and Mia who is a superb photographer herself understands this and planned the shoots in the blue hour, sunrise and sunset. It does mean early morning starts (some 4am) and late finishes, but this is what makes the difference between just ok pictures and stunning pictures.

On arrival at Guilin airport I was greeted by Mia and her driver and taken to my hotel. The very next morning I was met at 4am sharp and taken by raft on the Li river to a scenic spot to photograph the cormorant fisherman during the blue hour.

Over the years Mia and Andy have built up a special relationship and a very strong bond with the fishermen and in return the fishermen have great respect for them and are very willing to fulfil all the requests put to them.

Whilst waiting for my cameras to acclimatise to the humidity after leaving an air conditioned room Mia came up with a surprised and very much needed filter coffee which was a lovely way to start the shoot.

The shoot lasted a good two hours and I was delighted with the results.

Later that afternoon we visited the fishermen's home where I was able to do some environmental portraiture before setting off again to the sunset location to photograph the fishermen again out on the Li river. Due to Mia's insider knowledge she was aware of large photographic group in the area that evening so we planned to avoid the group giving me uninterrupted time photographing the fishermen.

The next day we set off to Yanshoo and a rural location for some landscape photography. I was aware of a 600 step climb to the top of the mountain which I was not looking forward to as I am not in the best of shape! It did take me about 30 minutes to climb up, but it was not too bad as I took occasional breaks the way up. The view from the top was oh so worth though. It was like a fantasy land that I had never seen before. We were lucky with the weather and had beautiful skyscapes and light to complement the ever changing scenery.

The very next morning we were up at 4.30am and climbed another 500 steps to go to a beautiful landscape location over Li River to capture the Karst scenery at sunrise.

Later that afternoon we travelled about 4 hours away to the Longji Rice Terraces to photograph some of the Yao people working in the rice terraces set again in yet another incredible view. Mia has taken so much care and time in locating the exact spots to photograph some of the worlds most stunning scenery.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Mia for the incredible time and devotion that she put into my trip making it one of the most incredible journeys of my lifetime.
Written October 12, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

TomDavis520
Oxford, MS31 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2017 • Friends
I am 62 years old and a serious amateur photographer and have travelled the world exploring and taking photos for more than 40 years. I have been with tour companies that are good and some that are not so good. Guilin Photography Tours is hands down the best organized, most helpful and best I have ever experienced.

Mia and Andy lined up everything that I asked for, and then some. Our guide was Jessica. All I can say is WOW. She speaks English like a US citizen, organized, polite, excellent facilitator with locals asking for permission to photograph and smiles all the time!

They arranged visits to local fishermen's homes, set up sunrise and sunset shoots and best of all they did this with real fishermen. Most fishermen are there to model for tourists but there are about 5 living true fishermen and they can arrange everything. The oldest fishermen is 82.

They also can take you to the viewpoints overlooking the Li River and the limestone hills. They know which place to go when because the sun changes angles at sunset/sunrise as the seasons change and they get it right.

I was not here at the right time for the rice terraces north of Guilin, but my plans are to return and use them again.

I cannot brag on these folks enough and no, I am not related to them nor on their payroll!
Written February 22, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Bart C
Brussels, Belgium45 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2014 • Friends
Together with 2 colleagues, we had a weekend to spare and opted for the beauty of the nature in the Guilin area. We were appealed by the description of this photography tour, although none of us are professional photographers. From the first contact onwards, the experience with Mia and Andy has been a great one: clear explanations, a variety of options, smooth communication,...

There are probably 100 good reasons why you should consider going with them, including:

- They listen to your interests and they do everything they can to give you the experience YOU are looking for
- They take you to places where other tourists don't go, off the beaten track
- They know the most astonishing places (we went for 2 early morning sunrise treks and had the most beautiful views ever)
- They are constantly exploring new trails, new roads,... to find the most picturesque villages, astonishing look outs over the river Li,...
- They can communicate with the locals, allowing you to ask any questions you may have
- They know all the "special" activities in the area (we went on a bamboo raft down the river Li, saw the authentic Cormoran fishermen in action, did an e-bike tour on the countryside,...)
- They give you priceless advice on how to optimize your photo settings in a clear, non-technical, manner (we took some of the most amazing pictures)
- they have very honest and transparent prices (no surprises, and after a quick comparison with the classic tours, prices turned out to be just slightly more expensive when you calculate the total price - but you do get a 100 times better experience!!)
- They genuinely care about you and your experience as well as about the local people and their well-being

When you have the opportunity to go to such a beautiful place like Guilin, don't go on the classic crowded river cruises, but make it a true once-in-a-lifetime adventure. You will not regret. And by the way, don't get scared by the weather forecasts: we were supposed to get wet all weekend, but weather turned out to be great!)

We would do it again immediately - highly recommendable - wish we could give you guys a 6-star rating!!

Thank you so much!
Written June 2, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Travel Babbo
Santa Barbara, CA336 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2016 • Solo
I traveled through Guangxi with Mia and several other photographers for a week. Having gone on 10+ photo trips now around the world, I've seen a wide range of expertise and flexibility. Mia had us in the right places at the right times - always. She set up excellent photo ops when required, and was flexible at getting us one-on-one time with some of the gentlemen who we photographed at their homes the next day. I loved everything about this trip and, just as importantly, I got great images. I'd work with Mia again in a heartbeat.
Written February 6, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jeff C
Princeton, NJ4 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2014 • Friends
We hired Guilin Photography Tour for a four-day trip for myself and my daughter. I am an avid photographer and I was looking for a guide to show me the best photography and tourist sites in the area. We had a great trip and my expectations were far exceeded.

The initial plan for the trip was developed by exchange of emails with our guide Mia. However, when I had additional questions, Mia suggested we speak by Skype. This brief conversation quickly cleared up all the issues and most importantly established a great working relationship. This was the type of service that this company provided even before we committed to hire them.

Mia and her team arranged for transportation from the airport, hotels, driver, and tour. Unfortunately, she was ill the first day but she sent a terrific substitute LeLe who did an excellent job. The following day, Mia arrived and we toured with both guides. They took us to many wonderful sites. The hotels were excellent (especially Tea Cozy). She arranged for Comrorant fisherman photography session on the Li River. The fisherman was very professional and the photography opportunity was terrific. We spent time on the on Yulong River, Li River, Longji, and took a long hike through the rice paddy fields. We enjoyed each part of the trip. Most importantly, Mia never stopped working at trying to be sure we had a great experience.

After my daughter went home, I stayed for a work meeting. My colleagues at the meeting had one day to tour the area and we hired Mia to organize the day trip. Once again, we had a great experience and everyone was very pleased with the quality of the trip.

You cannot go wrong hiring Guilin Photography Tour company. They are hard working professionals who will try in every way possible to provide you an outstanding travel and photography experience. I highly recommend them.
Written April 23, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Timothy J
Mountain View, CA61 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2018 • Solo
This tour group is largely over rated. They appear to over charge clients and don't appear to book the main photographers they suggest. Further, they have another company you are referred to called Gatsby. The name says it all. If you inquire about the cost, guide and details of your trip it is likely they will send you a letter arrogantly telling you they are already booked or someone just booked the last spot.
Written June 7, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
‘‘Anonymous Timothy’ is not a customer. Never got “referred to another company.” Never dealt with anyone but Mia. Never traveled, booked, or even paid anything. He thought the famous pros that hired us, and recommend us, Trey, Jim, Rick and Nick, are on our guiding team. He expected our 5 Star Award Winning service to tailor a 1-1 (1-2 in his case) trip during our peak month for five days, at 50% to 70% less than we quoted. When we told him, we don’t have availability and also the reason for not being able to offer a half-price trip, he then ‘replied' to Mia not by email but by posting this 1-star libelous misrepresentation. He knows we started Gatsby, it’s a result of our success in Guilin, because the demand for a unique service like ours means we now have a team in Tibetan Yunnan, Guizhou, Huangshan, Zhangjiajie and on the wild parts of the Great Wall. Naturally in a new name, not using the word ‘Guilin'. Mia's email signature even shows she is the founder of Gatsby, and the email and company name in our communication with Tim never changed. Mia was merely unable to allocate one of our photo guiding team for all his dates during the final days of the rekindling of discussions, one he only restarted in June, after radio silence since January. At the start of last weeks’ chat, we could just about allocate a photo guide but only with some juggling of the trip design, a design he loved and said was the best he had received. At one point we had to ask if he could adjust his dates by a couple of days, and another point offered to arrange a driver lead sunrise on the transfer day, again because the calendar was so tight at that time.   Then other bookings coming in and changes meant we could no longer offer him guiding at those dates. Only a deposit holds our guides dates, but we don't like to say to people ‘it’s the last slot’ because that sounds like sales pressure. However, we did tell him clearly ‘only a deposit can hold our guides and our guide availability calendar changes daily’. Our website also shows this. I think informing him in one single email about the reasons of not being able to reduce the price, and that we don’t have a guide for his dates anymore, was taken in totally the wrong way, and what was a good relationship with Mia turned into this; to our shock. Mia emailed Tim to politely and gently confront him about the false claims here, before we replied online, but he did not address those points. His last email continues on a theme of 'we failed to understand just who he is,’ despite all the links he sent us, and a phone call name-dropping a famous pro he once traveled with. Tim to his credit did admit ‘you don’t deserve a 1-star review...’ but did not go on to apologize or address the things he wrote here. We now write this because we have just noticed ‘Anonymous Timothy’ has also posted a 5-star glowing review that also advises people not to book with us on a local Chinese independent part-time tour guide’s TripAdvisor page, a tour guide he has never traveled with. He tells us that this tour guide is still available in September (the second most popular month of the year) and he will be hiring him. Tim told us in his email that this is at a very good price, which seems way lower than normally offered by this minor competitor. This smells fishy to us; especially since the review also has a very strong anti-foreigner sentiment. Andy Beales
Written June 16, 2018
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

nancy372
Washington DC, DC19 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2018 • Friends
Wow! By the first of our two day photo adventure with Andy, our gregarious very skilled photo guide and guru, my friend, daughter and I were ready to petition Andy (and Mia his partner) to lead our next global photography tour. Guilin Photography Tours is well organized, friendly, consumer focused and amazingly always has a quiet plan B or C depending on weather/events/needs. Andy was able to meet all three of us at our photography level and we all walked away with a better understanding how to organize a fantastic photo with our cameras, iPhones and even his drone, in all types of light. He was so flexible with what we did each day that he tailored the day to our whims: want to photograph village elders despite the fact you said you wanted to focus on landscapes? "Sure, I know just the people who might pose for us." Want to take early morning sunrise photos? "I know just the place and I will bring the french press coffee and breakfast for when we rest and wait for the light to change. " Every detail was thought of and every second of our class was enjoyable and educational. Work with these folks: they are wonderful with a meaningful philanthropic reason for being in the region.
Written June 5, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Showing results 1-10 of 161

Guilin Photography Tour - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

All Guilin HotelsGuilin Hotel DealsLast Minute Hotels in Guilin
All things to do in Guilin
Day Trips in GuilinAmusement Parks in GuilinSpas & Wellness in Guilin
RestaurantsFlightsVacation RentalsTravel StoriesCruisesRental Cars