Yangshuo is a popular destination for many foreigners because it is a very comfortable place to visit with the abundance of Western restaurants with English menus and plenty of Chinese English speakers. The best time of the year to do this trip is during the summer so that the river is much higher than in the winter. Also I would advise doing this trip during the summer in case you wanted to add the Longji area onto the trip and Longji (Dragon’s Backbone, terraced rice fields) is ugly in the winter with all the crops dead, I made this mistake.