After the solar term “Beginning of Summer,” Hangzhou has officially stepped into summer and all types of summer fruits are beginning to appear in Hangzhou’s markets, including mulberry, loquat and raspberry. If you fancy a bite of summer then, instead of going to market, why not visit a farm and pick a tasty fruit or two…
Tonglu Yutangwan Ecological and Leisure Farm
Yutangwan Ecological and Leisure Farm introduces mulberries from Taiwan. This kind of mulberry, lasting four seasons, is larger than other varieties and tastes better too. In addition to mulberry picking, visitors can also engage in the farm’s fish-related activities, such as angling with friends and family. The farm has also developed ‘QQ farm’ which provides city people with a place to plow and grow their own plants. The QQ farm is estimated to open this July so, if you are interested in having your own farmland then this is the place to plot for.
Address: Zhaixi Village, Jiangnan Town, Tonglu County (桐庐县江南镇窄溪村)
Transportation: G25 Changchun–Shenzhen Highway → 320 National Road → Jiangnan Road → 514 County Road → Zhaixi Village
Cost: 20 RMB per person and 50 RMB per basket (one kilogram) if you wish to bring your pickings home
Picking Time: until May 15
Xiaoshan Dayanshan Mulberry Base
The whole month of May is the time for mulberry picking and Dayanshan Mulberry Base is the largest mulberry base inside Xiaoshan District. The base is home to over 150 mu (1 mu roughly equals 666 sq m) of mulberry fields. Looking into the base from the entrance, you are greeted with branches adorned with an abundance of mulberries. The soil in Dayanshan Mulberry Base is rich in selenium, which makes the mulberries high in nutritional value.
When you visit the base, you should also try their “Sanlu” Chicken. The chicken, the dishe's main ingredient and treasure of the town, is fed on grasses, mulberry leaves, mulberry insects and mulberries, making the meat tenderer and more fragrant. After a satisfying meal, you can head to Dayanshan Scenic Area and Huantan Village.
Address: Taipingqiao Village, foot of Dayanshan Mountain, Jinhua Town, Xiaoshan District
Transportation: Shaoxing Downtown → Hangzhou–Ningbo Highway → Hangzhou Belt Road → Shanghai – Kuiming Highway → Tangmei Road → Jinhua Town
Cost: 60 RMB (including admission fee and one-hour fruit picking inside the base; one can eat as much as they want during picking and can also bring a basket of mulberries home)
Picking Time: until early June
Qiandaohu Mulberry Pilot Base
Qiandaohu Mulberry Pilot Base is technologically directed by the Institute of Silkworm Breeding and Mulberry Growing of Zhejiang Academy of Agricultural Science. Inside the base are various mulberry species and one can even spot a 17 to 18 centimeter long variety. Walking into the mulberry garden, densely distributed mulberries of different colors, green, orange and dark purple hide in and amongst the greenery, making people unable to resist the temptation to pick. Afterwards, one can head to the nearby farmers’ houses to savor the specialties of Qiandaohu Lake, wild fish head, dried bamboo shoots … or ride a bicycle along the Chunyang Road to enjoy the roadside scenery.
Address: Qiandaohu Modern Sericulture Pilot Farm, Songqi Village, Fenkou Town, Chun’an County
Transportation: starting from Qiandaohu Town, travel along Chunyang Road (淳杨线) and after 55 kilometers there are signposts directing you to the farm.
Cost: 50 RMB per person (free eating while picking and a basket of mulberries, 1.5 kilograms) or 20 RMB per person (free eating while picking but no mulberry bringing home)
Picking Time: late May
When speaking of loquats in Hangzhou, the first thing that springs to mind are Tangqi loquats. As early as the Tang Dynasty, Tangqi Loquats became an imperial tribute and the town was later hailed as “the Hometown of Zhejiang Loquats.”
Yuhang District Tangqi Loquat Characteristic Park
Address: No. 1917, Wangmei Road, Tangqi Town, Yuhang District (余杭区塘栖镇望梅路1917号)
Transportation: Tangqi Town – S09 Provincial Road
Cost: 60 RMB per person for individuals; 35 RMB per person for groups of more than 10 people
Picking Time: probably starting from May 15 and lasts for about 20 days
Chun’an Banxia Village
Banxia Village is high in altitude and is only accessible by a section of winding mountain road. Although transportation here is not very convenient, the environment is unrivaled. The village, a kind of wonderland, is surrounded by mountains on four sides and is characterized by dense forest and gurgling streams. After raspberry picking, one can also enjoy its breathtaking scenery or purchase some self-brew raspberry wine made by the local villagers.
Address: Banxia Village, Linqi Town, Chun’an County
Transportation: Qiandao Lake → Linqi Town (临岐) → Meikou Village (梅口) → Xinhua Village (新华) → Gaofeng Village (高峰) → Banxia Village (半夏)
Cost: Free (After picking, one need to purchase raspberries at a price of about 60 RMB per 500 grams)
Picking Time: starting May 10
In Jiande, there is an ancient town that has experienced thousands of years of wind and rain. It has a beautiful name called Meicheng (Plum Blossom Town). Meicheng was the state town of the then Yanzhou and is now the county town of Jiande. It has a history of 1700 years.