Hangzhou's Scenic Bus Routes – Rides to Remember
Tired of Walking? Annoyed with Parking? Just take any one of the following three scenic bus routes and Hangzhou’s natural scenery, historical and cultural heritages and leisure spots, will provide you with a ride to remember.
These three bus routes pass by most of the landmark attractions in Hangzhou, West Lake, Lingyin Temple, Dreaming of Tiger in Hupao Valley, Qiantang River, Yanggong Causeway and Shengli River Food Street, etc.
Route: West Lake → Lingyin Temple
This is the first route to hit the streets of Hangzhou, or even Zhejiang, 94 years ago. Before the existence of tourist buses the Bus No.7 was seen as the most beautiful bus route in Hangzhou because of the scenery of the West Lake and its rolling green hills.
Hubin (Lakeside) is probably the best place to see the side of Hangzhou known to many as ‘Oriental Leisure City’. This is where visitors, by day, will find seniors practicing Chinese calligraphy, singing opera or dancing. Whereas at night you can see crowds watching the West Lake’s famous musical fountain, witness queues of people waiting to grab a bite in the famous Green Tea and Grandma’s Restaurants (two popular local restaurant chains) and trace many a footstep to the Intime Shopping Mall, Jiefang Road Department Store and Lixing Department Store. If you would rather watch, from afar, then simply sit back and relax and let bus No. 7 do all the hard work.
Attractions along the road: Lakeside Parks, Xihu Tiandi (西湖天地).
Nearby bus stops: East Yongjin Gate (yong jin men dong: 涌金门东), No.1 Park (yi gong yuan: 一公园), Lakeside (hu bin: 湖滨), Intersection of Pinghai Road on Dongpo Road (dong po lu ping hai lu kou: 东坡路平海路口)
As the bus approaches the Lingyin area it gets more and more serene and what is highly recommended is getting off at Hangzhou Botanical Garden and walking to Lingyin Temple where birds can be heard chirping in luscious greenery and bamboo forests are waiting to guide you to your soul’s retreat. Please be prepared that Lingyin Temple is always packed with pilgrims and tourists. However, you can always stay a night at one of the many featured Hangzhou inns in Baile Bridge (白乐桥) and then get up early to immerse yourself in its profound Buddhist culture and any one of its architectural masterpieces.
Nearby bus stops: Hangzhou Botanical Garden (hang zhou zhi wu yuan: 杭州植物园), Hongchun Bridge (hong chun qiao: 洪春桥), Nine Kilometer Pines (jiu li song: 九里松), Stone Lotus Pavilion (shi lian ting: 石莲亭), Lingyin Temple (ling yin si: 灵隐寺)
Route: West Lake → Qiantang River
There are many ways to tour West Lake however if you wish to do it in an artistic way then you should choose Bus route No.4 which runs along Nanshan Road and Hupao Road to Qiantang River. Many fancy cafés stand along Nanshan Road and the famous China Academy of Art is also located there which, along with many other galleries, is noted for its excellent exhibitions available almost every day.
Nanshan Road is most famous for its art ambience and its lively night life with China Academy of Art, West Lake Museum and a host of restaurants, bars and cafés seen dotted along the way. Getting off at the intersection of Temple to King Qians (qian wang ci lu kou: 钱王祠路口) is a good choice for satisfying the senses. Near the bus stop of Qingbo Gate (qing bo men: 清波门) you can find Orioles Singing in the Willows, one of the Top Ten Views of West Lake and further south, instead of shops, restaurants and cafés, phoenix trees dominate the roadside.
In addition, the south end of Nanshan Road gathers some of the most popular attractions of Hangzhou; for instance, Su Causeway and Leifeng Pagoda.
Nearby bus stops: Intersection of Temple to King Qians, Qingbo Gate, Jingci Temple (jing si: 净寺) and Su Causeway (su di: 苏堤)
If Nanshan Road is known as a typical urbanized road found in a modern metropolis then Hupao Road is a primitive one hidden in mountains and characterized by dense forest. The whole length of the road is interesting but whilst this may take some time to cover on foot its real essence lies in Four Eyes Well (si yan jing: 四眼井) which you can get to by getting off at Hangzhou Zoo (hang zhou dong wu yuan: 杭州动物园)
Nearby bus stops: Chishan Port (chi shan bu: 赤山埠), Hangzhou Zoo (hang zhou dong wu yuan: 杭州动物园), Tiger Spring (hupao: 虎跑)
Route: West Lake → Binjiang (Qiantang Riverside)
No.194 passes the north range of Yugu Road, Qiushi Road, Shuguang Road, Yang Causeway and Tiger Spring. Take the bus in different seasons and you will be presented with a variety of scenery. If you wish to eat something along the way then Qingzhiwu (青芝坞) at Yugu Road and Laji Food Street (垃圾街) at Binjiang are both tasteful choices.
Bus No.194 passes through the north range of Yugu Road. One of the best seasons in which to enjoy its view is in spring when cherry blossom, at the roadside, is in full bloom. The south stretch of Qingzhiwu is a paradise for foodies where Pushu (朴墅) and Fire Fox (火狐狸) restaurants are among the most popular. The autumn chrysanthemum exhibition in Hangzhou Botanical Garden is another highlight.
Attractions along the way: Yuquan Campus of Zhejiang University
Nearby bus stops: Intersection of Qiushi Road on Yugu Road (yu gu lu qiu shi lu kou: 玉古路求实路口)
Lining along this serene and picturesque causeway are grand phoenix trees which show their true charm in autumn. When riding along Yanggong Causeway, brace yourself for a bumpy ride as the Bus No. 194 resembles a roller coaster when traveling over many of the arched bridges along the way.
Nearby bus stops: Hangzhou Flower Nursery (hang zhou hua pu: 杭州花圃), Dingjiashan Scenic Area (丁家山景区), Yuhu Bay (yu hu wan: 浴鹄湾)
【Qiantang River Bridge】
Qiantang River Bridge is designed by Mao Yisheng. Completed in 1937 and after 77 years it still manages to maintain its original appearance and was the first two-level bridge for cars and railways to be designed and built by the Chinese.
When you walk on the bridge and a train passes below the shaking bridge resembles that of an earthquake. It is great to view Qiantang River and Pagoda of Six Harmonies from this bridge.
Nearby bus stops: Tiger Spring (hu pao: 虎路), Qiantang River Bridge Tranfer Center (钱江大桥换乘站)
One more internet-famous restaurant hits Hangzhou. The restaurant offers guests not only tasty food from all over the world, but also an opportunity to experience the supreme airplane VIP services. It is called Hedila Airplane Theme Restaurant. With a giant airplane head, boarding signs, beautiful stewardesses and ceilings resembling the clear starry sky, the details in the restaurant is exactly the same as on a real airplane.