Xianghu Lake is home to the oldest canoe in the world, the epic battlefield of Wu and Yue States and the birthplace of Xishi, one of the most famous ancient Chinese beauties.
Brief of Xianghu Lake
Xianghu Lake is home to the oldest canoe in the world, which has a history of over 8,000 years. The epic battlefield of Wu and Yue States dating back to two thousand years ago is well preserved here. It is also the birthplace of Xishi, one of the most famous ancient Chinese beauties.
According to some archeological findings, Xianghu Lake was formed earlier than West Lake. It is shaped like a gourd, with its south and north framed with verdant mountains. The scenery of glistening waters against green hills is both tranquil and enticing, which has won this lake a poetic name: "Eighty Li (about 40 kilometers) Great Gallery Along the Lake".
Xianghu Lake is spanned with an arched bridge from the Ming Dynasty at the narrowest water surface, which divides this lake into "upper" and "lower" ones. Thanks to the silt accumulated over the past millennium, the upper lake gives way to a flat field. Nowadays we can only see the lower lake.
When comparing Xianghu Lake with West Lake, many locals deem the former as a beautiful girl living in a remote village, while the latter is a wealthy and refined lady of high class. The abundant cultural relics and natural scenery here have attracted scholars from Japan and the United States. After carrying out a thorough investigation into the history and culture of this lake, R. Keith Schoppa, an American academician and sinologist accomplished a paper praising Xianghu Lake’s historical and cultural significance.