A Guide to Traveling Along the Lakeside Park
“Just as there is paradise in heaven, there are Suzhou and Hangzhou on earth” and the West Lake is both a paradise on earth and there are many ways in which to explore it.
When you travel to Hangzhou, you can choose an idyllic scenic route adjacent to the West Lake, namely, the Lakeside Park. Lakeside Park lies on the eastern bank of the West Lake in the middle of Hubin Road and the West Lake. With a total of 1.8km in length, it starts from the north at the intersection of Shengtang Road, Beishan Street and stretches along the lake shore to the south and then ends at Jiefang Road. In general, the part near Jiefang Road is called No.1 Park, then No.2, No.3, No.4, No.5 and No.6 Park follow suit.
Lakeside No. 1 Park
Lakeside No.1 Park is very popular, as besides tourists, it is also the place where the elderly and middle-aged citizens show off their talents. You can watch shows including square dance, social dance, Peking Opera, Yueju Opera, Huangmei Opera and all kinds of bel canto, in accordance with their own musical instruments. It’s crowded and bustling and you can also dine nearby in famous local restaurants like Grandma’s Kitchen and Green Tea Restaurant.
In the park and facing the lake, there is a pavilion called Jiaxing where stands a tablet that bears an inscription of Emperor Qianlong. With a long history, and having once collapsed and been reconstructed, this pavilion has witnessed many historical vicissitudes of the West Lake.
Summer is the season for appreciating lotus flowers and the lake area near the pavilion will be covered by lotus flowers by June which provides tourists with a great view of both the flowers and the city’s glowing sunset.
Lakeside No.2 Park
Start from the No.1 park and walk northwards, when you see gaily-painted pleasure boats berthed at the lake shore on the left and a West Lake pleasure boat ticket office on the right, then you know you have arrived at the No.2 Park. In the morning or evening, the southern section of Lakeside Park is packed with people some of whom even perform shows.
Lakeside No.3 Park
Walk to the north along the lake shore from the No.2 Park and at the junction of the No.2 and No.3 Park you will see the renowned West Lake Musical Fountain. There are three to four rows of chairs for tourists to rest and enjoy the musical show and there are two sessions respectively at 19:00 and 20:00 in the evening. The prosperous In77 Shopping Mall, packed with fashionable clothes and cool eateries, is also not far away so you can shop to your hearts content whilst working up a healthy appetite.
The road facing the musical fountain is Pinghai Road and to the left is the prestigious Hyatt Hotel and Lixing Mingpin Square Mall where there are many shops selling luxury brands and an array of trees often dotted with squirrels.
Lakeside No.6 Park
There are very few architectural complexes in the north of Lakeside Park until you reach the No.6 Park where the famous Hu Pan Ju Teahouse is nestled. There is also a Jiuzhi Villa, an outdoor tea house of Hu Pan Ju Teahouse and the renowned Starbucks for drinking tea or coffee for enjoying a hearty meal after a tiresome walk.
From No.6 Park walk northwards along the lake shore and, a while later, you will see a big pavilion which is the ticket office of the West Lake pleasure boats where you can buy tickets for a night tour of the West Lake. You can also rent rowing boats (close to the Children’s Palace) if you want to try your own hands at rowing on the famous West Lake.
What should be mentioned is the West Lake Music Harbor, a music cafe, near the intersection of Shengtang Road where you can doze to the sounds of characteristic music. There is also a cafe called Zhangming Music Museum that provides a one-stop service like reading, coffee and music.
A must visit is the Wing and Wave Pavilion, in the No.6 Park, which was built to commemorate the national hero General Yue Fei during anti-Jin wars in the Southern Song Dynasty.
Dining, Accommodation and Shopping
From south to north, to the left of Lakeside Park is the West Lake, to the right of it is the bustling Hubin Road where you can find a variety of cuisines in Zhi Wei Guan Restaurant, Grandma’s Kitchen and Prince Pavilion. A little further afield from here is Nanshan Road, Dongpo Road, In77 Hubin Shopping Mall and all sorts of western-style restaurants.
For accommodation, there are numerous hotels including Huaqiao Hotel, Hyatt Hotel, Renhe Hotel and Dahua Hotel.
For shopping, there is a wealth of shopping malls and there are tons of entertainment venues as well. Transportation here is quite convenient too as you can arrive here by bus, bike or subway and there are sightseeing buses around the west lake waiting for you to hop on and explore the surrounding sights.
To accompany a great coffee, a most enchanting scene is essential. So, for a sip of spring then step into Hangzhou, now in a colorful season enveloped by misty fog, and the perfect place to seek out a cafe or two. The following are a few of our recommendations near to the West Lake Scenic Area.
When you travel to Hangzhou, you can choose an idyllic scenic route adjacent to the West Lake, namely, the Lakeside Park. Lakeside Park lies on the eastern bank of the West Lake in the middle of Hubin Road and the West Lake