Top Things to Know

What makes people so fond of taking photographs of cormorant fishermen?

There are several reasons why people are drawn to photographing cormorant fishermen:

  • In Chinese art, fishermen have been a popular subject for centuries, so there is a cultural appreciation for them.
  • Cormorant fishermen can make for visually striking compositions when combined with landscapes, which makes for great photography.
  • There have been many award-winning photography works featuring cormorant fishermen, which has helped to further popularize them as a subject.
  • The way the fishermen cast their nets in the air or the way the golden fishing nets look against sunrises and sunsets can be incredibly beautiful to behold.
  • When the fishermen are illuminated by gas lamps at dusk, they can create a picturesque scene against the backdrop of distant mountains.
Guilin Cormorant Fishermen Photography NET CASTING AT SUNRISE

Would shooting during sunrise or sunset be more favorable?

Both sunrise and sunset have their own unique advantages, and the choice of which to use depends on the location and scenery being filmed. It's worth noting that many famous films directed by masters were shot during sunset.

At sunset

Sunset locations tend to attract more tourists and photographers, but they often focus on capturing images of fishermen instead of the scenery. During peak season, there may be large tourist ships returning from Yangshuo to Guilin, as well as bamboo rafts moving around the area, which could potentially disrupt the reflection of the mountains and the fishermen.

Guilin Cormorant Fishermen Photography Gas lamp portraits at dusk

At sunrise

Typically, there are no other photographers or rafts nearby, which means there is less disturbance and better opportunities for photography. There are some lesser-known spots where the water is particularly calm in the early morning, providing a higher chance of capturing breathtaking reflections of the fishermen and mountains.

Guilin Cormorant Fishermen Photography Net casting at sunrise
Guilin Cormorant Fishermen Photography Net Reflections over sunrise

Would it be preferable to have one fisherman or two for the arrangement?

Typically, arranging two cormorant fishermen is better for photography. However, at sunset locations where there may be many other photographers, it may be challenging to find a spacious location for two fishermen.

On the other hand, at sunrise when there are no other tourists or photographers around, having two fishermen can lead to better shots. Ultimately, the decision on whether to hire one or two fishermen depends on personal preference. Please see the photos below as an example. It's worth noting that hiring two fishermen may cost more.

Guilin Cormorant Fishermen Photography Net Fishing at Dawn
Guilin Cormorant Fishermen Photography Two Fishermen at Beautiful Glow
Guilin Cormorant Fishermen Photography Chating at the red Glow

FAQs Regarding Photography of Cormorant Fishermen

#1 Will other people be present during the cormorant fishermen photography session?

The session is private and only you and your guide will be present with the fishermen. However, there may be some Chinese tourists, but your guide will try to prevent them from getting too close and give you more space.

#2 Do I need to make a reservation in advance to book the fishermen?

Once you confirm your plans with us, we will reserve the fishermen's dates.

#3 Can I give a gratuity to the fishermen?

While it is not mandatory, we will pay the fishermen a reasonable fee for their time. However, if you wish to help the elderly fishermen, a tip of RMB 50-100 ($10-20) would be appreciated.

#4 Is the photography session too touristy?

To be honest, it is somewhat touristy, but we try to maintain the authenticity of the experience. Many photographers come to this location, and the resulting images are quite dramatic and impressive.