West Lake was once a shallow bay connected to Qiantang River. Years of sediment build up caused by the Yangtze and Qiantang Rivers have turned it into a lagoon. Around 2600 years ago, it was an unwelcoming marsh of mud and sand. Gradually, over time, and aided by countess dredging efforts, it has evolved into a most beautiful fresh water lake.
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This oval-shaped lake spans 559 hectares. It borders Hubin Road to the west, Nanping Hill, Xixhao Hill,Jiuzhou Hill to the south, Yujin Hill, Jiqing Hill, Dingjia Hill and Santai Hill to the west as well as Qixia Ridge, Geling and Baoshi Hiill to the north. The entire lake is skillfully divided by the Su and Bai Causeways into five areas: the outer lake, Beili Lake, Xili Lake, Yuehu Lake and Xiaonan Lake. All of them are connected by a multitude of various bridges, which unify the causeways, islands, pagodas, monasteries and gardens. With its surreal beauty, West Lake is dreamy and timeless.
Situated in the western area of Hangzhou, West Lake not only plays a vital role in regulating climate, irrigating rice fields, and feeding its citizens, but also standing out as the finest example of man and nature coexisting in harmony. This beautiful natural reserve combines enticing natural splendor together with a rich cultural heritage, and it has penetrated into every aspect of Hangzhounese’s lives, from philosophy, art, expression, lifestyle, culture, and cuisine. In a word, the life-giving waters of West Lake has nourished and nurtured the hearts and souls of the people who call this city home.
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