Published: March 21st 2012March 21st 2012
St. Patrick's Day
Lauren and I with our green beers!
This weekend, Lauren and I decided to head down to the city of Hangzhou. It took us about three hours by bus to get there. It is the capitol of Zhejiang province and home to about 8 million people. It is also the location of UNESCO World Heritage site 西湖(West Lake), and where China’s most coveted green tea is grown.
We arrived on Friday afternoon and stayed in an old part of the city where no cars are allowed. The streets are filled with plenty of restaurants, street food, tea shops, and local art. They even had a beautiful creek running right down the main street. It was a gorgeous part of town, and about a 25 minute walk from the lake.
We got some pictures of the lake lit up at night on Friday, but decided to leave most of our exploring for the following day. Saturday morning we woke up early and headed out to check out the countless cultural sites around the ancient lake. We walked for hours and enjoyed the scenery before taking a ferry onto an island in the lake that held the “3 pools mirroring the moon.” The entire
area is very serene despite the fact that the city is extremely crowded and bustling.
Saturday night we had a lovely dinner down by the lake and then headed out to meet some old co-workers of some friends of ours for St. Patrick’s Day drinks. We had a blast meeting them, and enjoyed some cheap green beer at an expat bar to celebrate the holiday.
The next day, we woke up and took a cab out to the village of LongJin (Dragon Well). That’s the area where the famous Hangzhou tea is grown. The village is set in the hills, with the tea growing up the mountainside. It is an extremely gorgeous area, completely green and covered in mist. The village itself is quite quaint and is filled with vendors trying to sell their freshly grown tea. We ended up enjoying a long lunch with delicious food and incredible views at the base of a hill. After finishing our food, we made our way back to the train station and headed on back home to Changzhou!
There are more photos below