Yanggong Causeway is one of "Three Causeways of West Lake" along with Bai Causeway and Su Causeway. It's so named to commemorate Yang Mengying (杨孟瑛), the then governor of Hangzhou. It’s he who ordered the dredging of West Lake, and the construction of a causeway out of silt. Connected by six bridges, the causeway is otherwise known as "Inner Six Bridges".
Along Yanggong Causeway lines seven scenic areas from north to south: Breeze-ruffled Lotus at Quyuan Garden (曲院风荷), Golden Sand Harbor (金沙港), Hangzhou Flower Nursery (杭州花圃), Maojiabu (茅家埠), the Turtle Pool (乌龟潭), Yuhu Bay (浴鹄湾) and Viewing Fish at Flower Pond (花港观鱼). Together, they form Yanggong Causeway Scenic Area. Breeze-ruffled Lotus at Quyuan Garden
Well-known for its pink lotus blossoms and green lotus leaves swaying along with summer breeze, Breeze-ruffled Lotus at Quyuan Garden is one of "Top Ten Views of West Lake". The view even captured Kangxi Emperor of Qing Dynasty (1644-1912)’s attention who personally inscribed “Breeze-ruffled Lotus at Quyuan Garden” for the view. The stele with the original inscription on still stands in the park.
With a total area of 300 thousand square meters, it is the largest lotus park in China. During the Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279), Quyuan Garden used to be a notable wine workshop where in the summer, the bouquet of wine intermingled with the fragrance of lotus flowers. Now the wine workshop has been restored and visitors can get a glimpse of the art of Chinese ancient wine-making.
Golden Sand Harbor
Golden Sand Harbor is the place where the largest natural source of West Lake — Golden Sand Stream flows into the lake. Golden Sand Stream is so named because its sand is clear and shines like gold. For its rustic and serene environment, many notables left their footprints here. The outstanding artist of Peking Opera Gai Jiaotian (盖叫天: 1888—1971) spent half of his life here. Even now, there are numerous locals bringing their tents and picnic baskets to spend their day here.
Not far from the Old Home of Gai Jiaotian lies Little Hidden Garden. The current garden features constructions made of red sandalwood with winding corridors, ancient-style carved windows, and now it’s a resort for tourists to enjoy chrysanthemums. The history of the garden can be traced back to the Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279) which was then known as Shi’an Garden (适安园). Behind the garden lies a sad story. It's said there used to be a Lady Chrysanthemum good at both singing and dancing. She was working in court at the time; however, she got sick and resigned from the court. A eunuch, Chen Yuan admired her so much that he employed her to work in the Little Hidden Garden. For her incredible talent, Lady Chrysanthemum was again invited to work in the court which made Chen Yuan unable to see her performances, and he later died of lovesickness.
Hangzhou Flower Nursery was originally built in 1956 and has long been known as the best place to appreciate all kinds of flowers. Praised as "a pearl by West Lake", it faces West Lake in front and Western Hill at back. The flower nursery features over 2,000 flowers that are grown in an area of 300 thousand square meters. It consists of nine sections for potted Plants, Chinese roses, orchids, chrysanthemums, herbaceous flowers, aquatic flowers, greenhouse flowers, tree peonies and herbaceous peonies.
Named after its wide-spread cough grasses (mao), Maojiabu is a Jiangnan style water village featuring rustic scenery. Compared to other scenic spots, it’s kind of off the beaten track which somehow contributes to its good preservation of its original style. In Maojiabu, Sipping a cup of tea while enjoying the golden swaying couch grasses would be a good option. In addition, Maojiabu used to serve as a transfer station for water and land transportation as well as the gathering place for pilgrims which established its important role in Hangzhou Buddhist culture.
Hence, Maojiabu provides a window for visitors to understand Hangzhou Buddhist culture and the living style of water villagers. Historical attractions like Former Residence of Du Jinsheng (都锦生故居), Drunken Bai’s Wine Tower (醉白楼, Drunken Bai refers to Bai Juyi — the then governor of Hangzhou) and Reclining Dragon Bridge (卧龙桥) have been well-preserved there.
The Turtle Pool
The pool got the name for the fact that viewed from nearby hills, it resembles a turtle. The Turtle Pool is a natural wetland with human beings and animals and plants live in harmony. It offers a variety of landscape in all seasons: winding banks linked with islets by wooden bridges, hills bathing in water, all kinds of hydrophytic plants growing in and around the water area, waterside thatched pavilions and houses standing side by side. The scenic area mainly features two places of interest: Temple to Yu Qian (于谦祠) and Eternal Happiness Bridge (永福桥) dating from the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).
Yuhu Bay became known as early as the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368). It’s characterized by being natural, rustic and picturesque. In the scenic area, there is Zijiu Thatched House (子久草堂), the Memorial Gateway for Military Number One (武状元坊), Rainbow Bridge (霁虹桥), Reminiscence of Ancient Noted Personages at Santai Hill (三台梦迹).
Viewing Fish at Flower Pond (Huagang Park)
The three elements can summarize the beauty of the Park of “Viewing Fish at Flower Pond”: the fish, the flower and the stream. In the Red Carp Pond (红鱼池), visitors can see the remarkable view “Viewing Fish at Flower Pond” – one of “Top Ten Views of West Lake”. It’s a chief attraction of the park.
The highlight of the Peony Garden (牡丹园) is various species of precious peonies and 200 varieties of other flowers revealing their beauty in different seasons. It’s the kingdom of flowers. In addition, the garden’s design is also exquisite - a perfect combination of Chinese gardening and Western gardening.
In the park, there is a clear stream connecting the West Inner Lake and the Small South Lake and enclosing the whole park. Usually, a boat trip around Huagang Park is a must-do.
Spring is here and so is the 2017 “Intoxicating Springtime” – Hangzhou Outdoor Leisure Season which, in the following three months, will provide the city with over 50 springtime outdoor experiences and tour itineraries. With six themes to choose from such as child-parent, flower viewing, games and sports, spring couldn’t be livelier.
The annual time for picking Longjing green tea leaves, one of the top ten renowned teas of China, has begun in Hangzhou and everywhere tea farmers are now busy picking and hand frying the famous leaves. If you wanted to take a sneak peek at how the farmers meticulously pick their verdant leaves from bushes nestled in undulating hills, or if you wanted to sample, at first hand, this year’s Longjing variety, then head to the following three tea villages which are known for their tea, tea culture and tea-related tourist attractions.