If you travel to Shanghai, there’s a really cool thing that you have to do: a trip to Hangzhou. The idea is to stay at least one night and spend the next day touring the lake by bike, a fun activity that you will undoubtedly want to repeat.
Hangzhou, which Marco Polo called “the most sumptuous and elegant city in the world”, is today a modern city of skyscrapers. Accessible by public transport (bus and train), it’s an interesting destination and relatively inexpensive.
But the trip’s main attraction, the star of the show, is the oasis of greenery that extends into its placid surroundings: the West Lake, a huge expanse of water on whose banks are concentrated beautiful typically Chinese buildings. Bridges, pagodas… all are enveloped in a delightfully bucolic atmosphere and a landscape that can only be found in China. The area offers a lot; you can spend days traveling through it, although its most remarkable feature can be explored in a weekend, especially when done on two wheels. Renting a bike (an electric bike is a possibility) is very affordable, as well as a cheap, environmentally friendly way to travel the roads that surround and cross the lake. In fact, it is highly recommended! In general, money should not be a problem when planning this escape. When it comes to dining out, for example, there are multiple options that won’t break your budget. In fact, in the surrounding Lake of the West, you will find plenty of restaurants of traditional Chinese food with tasty dishes for only a few yuan.
Image | Vladimir K