Hangzhou travel guide
Hangzhou, located in Zhejiang Province, is a famous tourist destination. The fragrant flower-lined streets of Hangzhou are a beautiful place to venture and although home to more than six million, it is a city of serenity and beauty found nowhere else.
A cultural centre for hundreds of years, Hangzhou has many cultural attractions and things to do but you will need a city guide to Hangzhou to make sure you get to see this amazing place. Indeed, when Marco Polo passed through Hangzhou in the 13h century, he proclaimed it to be one of the most splendid cities in the world.
West Lake (Xi Hu) is the number one tourist attraction in Hangzhou. Although there are 36 other lakes bearing the same name, they all take theirs from this one. This original West Kale was first founded in the 8th century when the governor of the city commissioned that the marshy area be drained anda beautiful lake was created. It was over the subsequent years that other features were added, including pagodas, islands, causeways and gardens. It has been the inspiration behind many artists all around the world.
There are many places for you to explore in and around West Lake. The Zhejiang Provincial Museum is very interesting, Zhongshan Park will allow you to unwind even further and the Seal Engravers Society will fascinate you. But one place of interest in this area is the tomb of Su Xiaoxiao, the famous 5th century courtesan. The legend tells how she died from a broken heart waiting for the return of the man she loved and now haunts the area.
Another tomb well worth a visit is the Mausoleum of General Yue Feu (1103 – 42). During the Souther Song period, this General successfully battled the Jurchen armies who tried to invade the area but was later executed by his own government, along with his son, due to the betrayal of Prime Minister Qin Hui. In 1163 he was buried here by the order of the Song Emperor Gao Zong.
If you are looking for that perfect fantasy image of China then you need to make your way to Yellow Dragon Cave Park, located west of the General’s tomb. The stunning mountainside park can be reached by walking up the path over the lake. Bamboo forests, serene lakes and stunning views makes it one of the best places to take photos.
If you follow the path from here you will come upon the Baopu Taoist Compound. The walls are painted a pleasant shade of yellow and was named in honour of Ge Hong (284 – 364 CE), a Daoist master. Every morning and early evening the chants of the monks fill the air along with wafts of burning incense. Go further along to visit the Baochu Pagoda, known in English as Precious Pagoda, dating back to the 9th century.
Hangzhou, like with other Chinese cities, has many temples to visit but the Lingyin Temple, known in English as the Temple of the Soul’s Retreat, is definitely one you should not miss out on. Construction began back in 326 CE and has been rebuilt 16 times. Peaceful and calmness covers the area and you will feel a peacefulness in your soul when you visit here.
Restaurants in Hangzhou prefer to use pork and seafood rather than lamb and beef, which are mostly used in the more northern areas. Local dishes to try include dongpo rou and cuyu.
If you are searching for a comfortable place to rest your head then you will find plenty. Hotels in Hangzhou cater to all budgets and tastes so you will find somewhere which will be what you need.
Hangzhou is a city that is well worth a visit at least once in your lifetime. There are many museums to keep you interested, historical sites which will wow you and stunning natural beauty to soothe the soul. A visit to Hangzhou is a trip to somewhere simply wonderful.