Xixi National Wetland Park
With strikingly beautiful scenery, the royal family of the Southern Song Dynasty nearly chose this particular area to build their imperial residences. Now known as the Lungs of Hangzhou, Xixi National Wetland Park is only five kilometres away from West Lake. The park is China's only wetland featuring urban, cultural and agricultural wetlands. The area is also inhabited by more than 100 species of freshwater fish, and almost 200 species of birds.
West Lake is the model for Chinese landscaping and the spiritual home of Chinese scholars from different eras West Lake was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2011. With an area of 60 square kilometres, West Lake's actual water body skims over 6.5 square kilometres and is surrounded by trees through which sunlight dapples over water and grass. Here, there are more than 90 Chinese stylistic gardens and 60 ancient cultural relics for you to admire and explore at leisure.
Lingyin Temple literally translates as the Temple of Soul's Retreat and is West Lake's most celebrated places of interest. It is also one of China's top 10 Buddhist temples. Listed as a protected site in 1961 for its historical and cultural value, the temple is a leading centre for Chinese Buddhist cultural research.
This 71-metre high pagoda has been restored since ancient times and houses in its underground caverns Buddhist relics of the Buddha Sakyamuni. This pagoda gained fame in China because of its pivotal role in one of China's four ancient love stories, the White Snake fable.
The Dragon Well Plantation
Located on a hillside, West Lake has been producing green tea in China for over 1,200 years. The tea grown in this area is known for its fragrance, purity and the beautiful shape of the tea leaves. In March and April each year, the Dragon Well village holds Longjing tea-picking activities, often in the rainy mornings.