Banyan Lake and Fir Lake are located in the downtown of Guilin. They were originally built in Tang Dynasty and served as a city moat. As Guilin expanded to the south, the moat became lakes within the city area.
Built in Song-Dynasty, Blue Ribbon Bridge (now Sun Bridge) separates the two lakes. The Fir Lake was named after the fir trees growing on the shore and the Banyan Lake got its name because of a large banyan tree standing on shore near the 1,000-year-old South City Gate. The two lakes together were often referred to as Round Lake. A Zigzag bridge leads to the Mid-lake Isle, which is dotted with long corridors, waterside pavilions and ancient buildings.
Right now, these two lakes serves as a big free public park. It is a place for the local people to relax. Those people who are living nearby always come to the lakeside and do their exercises in the morning and dancing in the evening.
Ancient South Gate of Guilin
Ancient South Gate of Guilin is standing on the north side of Banyan Lake. It was constructed in Tang Dynasty and expanded in Ming Dynasty, the gate lies on the north bank of the Banyan Lake. In front of the gate is a 1,000-year-old Banyan tree. The 'Shadow of the Ancient Banyan Tree' was one of the famous scenic spots in Guilin during the Qing Dynasty.