Stunning natural beauty and an abundance of well-preserved cultural destinations make this region of China a tourist favourite. 

Hangzhou is one of China’s best tourist attractions. It has historical streets, the world’s oldest canal and gorgeous natural surroundings.

The city is home to over 9 million people. There is a wide variety of high-quality accommodations available in many parts of the city. In general, locals readily welcome foreigners.

Explore Hangzhou’s historical roots with a stroll down the ancient and well-preserved Qinghefang Street. Shop in hundred-year-old stores, mingle with locals and watch artisans make traditional handicrafts. Be sure to sample “dragon-whisker” candy, which is a local treat. Next, pick up some unique souvenirs at China Silk City. Barter with the merchants and get gorgeous Chinese silk at a great price.

Take a walk along the Grand Canal, which is also known as the Beijing-Hangzhou Canal. This 1,700 kilometre (1,000 mile) long waterway is the oldest and longest man-made canal in the world. Cross the water using one of the many beautiful stone bridges that span the channel.

Hangzhou’s primary tourist attraction is the breathtaking West Lake. This enchanting area was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2011 and has been preserved accordingly. Climb to the top of Precious Stone Hill to see Baochu Pagoda and to get a wonderful view of Hangzhou. Wander through the beautiful halls of Lingyin Temple and see Buddhist statues and artefacts. Cross the Broken Bridge. Rent a boat and get out on the water, or bike along the lake’s shore for a pleasant outing.

The area surrounding West Lake has numerous parks and gardens that are ideal spots for relaxing. Marvel at the wide variety of colours on display at Tulip Festival, held every spring in Prince Bay Park. See China’s fantastic flora with an excursion to the Hangzhou Botanical Garden.

Fly in to Hangzhou Xioshan International Airport, which has regular flights to and from Beijing and Hong Kong. Once in Hangzhou, use the convenient public transportation system to navigate the city. Between June and September, humidity in the city is extremely high, but in spring and winter the climate is ideal and the scenery is majestic.

Guide to Exploring Hangzhou

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