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West Lake
  • West Lake, the most beautiful and famous place in Hangzhou, is one of the best-known and most beautiful lakes in China. An old Chinese saying declares, “In heaven there is paradise and on earth there are Hangzhou and Suzhou”.

    Embraced by green hills on three sides, the lake is an elliptical  
     
    landscape covering an area of 5.6 square kilometers and having a perimeter of 15 kilometers. The whole lake is divided into 5 sections, namely the Outer Lake, North Inner Lake, Yuehu Lake, West Inner Lake and Lesser South Lake. "Outer West Lake" is the largest. "Gu Shan" or Gu Hill is the largest natural island in the lake. Su & Bai Causeways run cross the lake. Three small man-made islands, Xiao Ying Zhou, Hu Xing Ting, Ruan Gong Dun, lie in the center of Outer West Lake. Thus, the basic layout is “one hill, two causeways, three islands, and five lakes”.

    West Lake is not only famous for its picturesque landscape, it is also associated with many scholars, national heroes and revolutionary martyrs, thus embracing many aspects of Chinese culture. National heroes Yue Fei, Yu Qian, Zhang Ruoshui and Qiu Jin were all buried along the West Lake, leaving their illustrious names and noble spirits in the green hills and blue waters. In addition, many ancient buildings, stone caves and engraved tablets in surrounding areas are among the most cherished national treasures of China, with significant artistic value.

    Due to its prominent historical and cultural status among Chinese scenic resorts, West Lake was elected as a National Key Scenic Resort in 1982, one of Ten Scenic Resorts in 1985 and national 5A tourist resort in 2006. In any case, West Lake is both a great tourist attractions and a high inspiration for artistic creations.