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Ancient Roads – The Route to Hangzhou’s History and Beauty 2018-10-11
There are many famous ancient roads in China including the internationally-known ones like Ancient Tea Horse Road and Huihang Ancient Road – the No. 1 Ancient Road in China. These ancient roads are usually found winding through mountains and waters and are known for their historical importance as well as their isolation from the hustle and bustle of the outside world.

In Hangzhou near West Lake, which is characterized by seemingly borderless waters and towering mountains on its three sides, one can also find these kinds of ancient roads and following any will take you on a marvelous route to Hangzhou’s history and beauty.

Langdang Peak (琅珰岭)

Langdang Peak normally refers to all the hillocks south of Wuyuan Hill (五云山) and north of Tianzhu Hill (天竺山). The peak stretches for over ten li (‘Li” is a traditional Chinese unit of distance and one li equals 500 meters), hence its nickname ‘Shi Li Lang Dang’ (‘Shi’ means ten in Chinese).

Among the mountains surrounding the West Lake, it is the highest and longest hillock with the average altitude of over 200 meters. Shi Li Lang Dang not only offers a broad view of the West Lake, tea plantations and rolling hills shrouded by clouds but from here one can also hear the chanting sounds from the Buddhist temples at Tianzhu.

Shi Li Lang Dang is voted as one of the most favored tourist spots by Hangzhou citizens and tourists and today the road still retains its original style and continues to take its visitors on a magnificent journey of ancient discovery.

Shang Xiang Ancient Road (上香古道)

Shang Xiang Ancient Road, once the pilgrim’s path to the Buddhist temples at Tianzhu, stretches from Yanggong Causeway to Maojiabu.

The entrance of the Shang Xiang Ancient Road is hidden between Wolong Bridge (卧龙桥) and Yinxiu Bridge (隐秀桥) on Yanggong Causeway. The road, which takes one hour to finish, is characterized by a stone-clad path which, at every step you take, offers completely different views like wild ducks swimming in the lake or water birds flying high above.

Qianlong Ancient Road (乾隆古道)

Several hundred years ago, Qianlong Ancient Road was the chosen path for villagers wanting to get to Lingyin Temple to pray. The ancient road is named after Qianlong Emperor of the Qing Dynasty and was said to have been be built for him so he could sightsee. The Ancient Road is a one-meter-wide stone-clad road that stretches for 3000 meters all the way from Daqing Valley in Longwu Town (龙坞填) to Meijiawu Village (梅家坞). Flanked by lofty trees and a dense bamboo forest, this ancient path is serenely spiritual.
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