Regarded as one of the two Paradises on Earth, Hangzhou is widely considered one of the best places to live in China. There’s an expression in Chinese: “上有天堂 下有苏杭” which means, “Above, there is heaven; below there is Hangzhou….”.
The capital of Zhejiang province, Hangzhou is just two hours by bus from Shanghai. With a written history of over 2300 years, Hangzhou is among the Seven Ancient Capitals of China and is known for its natural beauty and green spaces.
The UNESCO website describes West Lake as, “….comprising the West Lake and the hills surrounding its three sides, has inspired famous poets, scholars and artists since the 9th century. It comprises numerous temples, pagodas, pavilions, gardens and ornamental trees, as well as causeways and artificial islands.”
A food-lovers delight, Hangzhou cuisine reflects the Zhejiang preparation style. Notable dishes include “Dongpo pork” (braised pork), clay-pot chicken colorfully named “Beggar’s Chicken” – plus a wide choice of fresh fish dishes.
Being a modern city of nearly 9 million, getting around, shopping and finding exciting nightlife are easy. Qing He Fang Street is the famous “Ancient Culture Street” and reflects characteristics of the Southern Song Dynasty.
Hangzhou is a transport hub with an international airport and connects with most major cities on the coast by train (both slow trains and high-speed rail). Within the city, taxis and buses are cheap and convenient, plus the newly opened Hangzhou Metro is easing some of the burden on the local transit system.
Not only is Hangzhou a wonderful travel destination, it’s also one of the best cities for foreigners living in China. Come see for yourself what all the fuss is about – working in “Paradise” might be a nice way to spend a gap-year!
- And The Winner Is…. (lindalivinginchina.wordpress.com)
- A Weekend and an “English Corner” in Hangzhou (curtisbecadventures.wordpress.com)
- Longjing: An Imperial Tea from Heaven on Earth (formaggiokitchen.com)