Chun Jie Trip to Hangzhou Suzhou

Written by Feb 20, 2005 20:02
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Reaching Hangzhou

Took a train from Shanghai. After 3 hrs reached Hangzhou.

It was cold and drizzling. Bad weather to start with. I should have simply slept home 7 days. Thats what I thought first. But the whole trip proved me wrong. I had the best trip ever!

Called a Taxi and said HuanchengBeiLu. She didnt understand. I was prepared.
Took out my printout which read HuanchengBeiLu in chinese. She said 40 Rmb.
It should be only 10 Rmb as per my research. Laowai (Foreigner) beware!
I caught hold of a chinese girl and asked her Bus number to HuanchengBeiLu in broken chinese and english.

TIP: If you want to find an english speaking Chinese - look for a girl between the age 20 to 30. I've found girls to be more interested in English in China!

So I got on K256 and got down at the wharf. Booked my ticket to Suzhou for the next night and caught the same bus back to railway station. From there I took another bus to the Youth Hostel. Pretty adventurous me haan (continued..)

In Hangzhou

Youth hostel is a cool place to stay. It has a western restaurant (not expensive), library, DVDs, hot water for shower, english speaking Staff. Also its a place to meet travellers and make friends.

The youth hostel is located on Nanshan Road, which is pretty much like brigade road in Bangalore, full of pubs and bars and the street teeming with youngsters.

Above all it costs about 5$ per day per person (50 Rmb incl registration charges). 4 ppl share one room. That was a good find from

I met a Korean guy "Shin" and we became great pals as we talked a lot about India, China and Korea. He can read chinese though he cannot speak / undestand.

Culture FACT: There are hundreds of dialects in China and you cannot understand one from the other but the characters and the meaning is the same.

Chinese is very pictorial. Koreans and Japanese borrowed characters from China.

First stop we made at was the <b>West Lake</B>. And yes, its definitely beautiful!
Some of the constructions are from 1260 AD.

It was good Shin joined me as he helped me with my luggage and clicked wherever I posed for a snap. He was least annoyed with all the acrobatics I performed in the whole course of taking pictures.
However it was mutual as I was guiding Shin with stories of all the places. Of those I could not remember it was easy to make up one

Along westlake

West Lake has many scenic spots.
First one we saw was "Orioles singing in the garden of willows". small name haan?
This was a so so pl;ace. Nothing much to see here.

Some buildings however looked good. We came to a building and I told Shin this must be the Japan China peace memorial. Shin told me it was a Tea Bar as he could read the characters.
Phooey me!!

We walked along the west lake and the sceneries are very beautiful. The drizzle added a scenic touch to the gardens and the lake.

Walking along the west lake can be a great experience especially if its drizzling or snowing!

Ling Yin temple at Hangzhou

Excellent place to visit!
Has a huge statue of Buddha. The single storey hall is 160 ft high. Place was crowded. The curtains in the temple are rich with exotic designs!

"Peak flying from Afar" is not so great a place but for Lingyin temple you need to buy the ticket for this one too.

During spring festival, a lot of chinese visit this Temple!
There was a huge crowd in the rain in LingYin temple.

There is a 3rd century pagoda at the 'Peak flying from Afar' spot near Lingyin temple.

I also climbed the Solitary hill and as the name says, it WAS solitary. There was nobody up there! There was nothing to see! I climbed like a stupid, thinking there are some grottos. Not on this hill!

Liu He Ta - Six Harmonies Pagoda

This is a very beautiful structure. Its a very old Architectural building dating back to 8th or 9th century. The view from inside the pagoda looks great.
It overlooks the Qiantang river and the west lake.
The detailing on the walls is interesting too inside the pagoda.

It reminded me of Bijapur's Gol Gumbaz when I was climbing the pagoda from inside. The steps are wide initially and then width is reduced after a few steps.
You can see the carving on the wood and the archway dating back to the 9th century inside.

The snow flakes added more flavor to the surroundings

The crazy night in Hangzhou

I met Vanessa in the Youth Hostel and we went to a pub Channel 9 on Nanshan Road.
Noisy place! Too loud. I guess it was a pub for the hearing impaired. :)

We went to the next pub Kana's. Had heard it wa a good place. Nobdoy at 10 PM. Too early for pubbers right?
Next stop - Night and Day! Good pub. Latin Music. Little expensive but who cares on a holiday night. Vanessa drank some cocktails over the whiskey she had in the evening (oh boyy chinese girls are pretty strong I must say!) and we danced pretty decntly for a while. Got bored.
Hit the next one. Irish Pub. Guess they could not afford big speakers and kept the volume to 2 or 3. We were out!
1130 pm walking in the streets looking for pubs can be interesting with some cold breeze and drizzle. Ok dont imagine wild now!

Went to Absolute House which was absolute bull! Out!!

Next pub had nice ambience and good crowd but after 10 minutes suddenly there were pole dancers all over the stage hardly dressed and we hit the streets again. Alright,it was Vanessa who wanted out, not me. It was 1 AM.

Next pub was good. Decently indecent crowd (no stripping I mean). We danced like mad monkeys this time with the loud music till 3 AM.

Pubbing is definitely fun in Hangzhou on Nanshan Road. I can say its a MUST DO activity in Hangzhou.

12 Rmb Luxury

10th morning the toilet had run out of paper in the hostel. The door wasnt closing properly too!
It could be a bad day if you skip the most important ritual in the morning.
Night and Day had a great toilet as I had observed the previous night. In the next 5 minutes I was there.
Unfortunately 830 am it was not open. Now I was thinking of finding a Holiday Inn or a Marriot when I saw a big Starbucks right in front of my eyes!
A lovely building in the middle of a pond. I bought the "coffee of the day" for 12 Rmb. There were also many magazines on the rack.
I placed my coffee on the table, picked up Biz Shanghai and hit the toilet. WOW!! the bathroom was clean and tidy and big with Chinese Aromatic candles.
Add scottish music in the small speakers throughout, that was it! More than what I needed. Luxury!

TIP: When you cannot find a clean toilet in the hotels or public places in China look for a Starbucks

 More Hangzhou Travel Reviews
1. Paradise on Earth DENNIS Jun 14, 2004 20:06
Comments (3)


Jan 3, 2006 21:55 Reply


do you mean the International Youth Hostel 101 Nanshan Road?


Aug 29, 2005 22:12 Reply

CONNY129 said:

why don't you find a KFC or McDonald ? It's totally free ,hehe~~


Feb 21, 2005 09:40 Reply


So interesting!You're so tricky a Laowai that no one can bam you:), more wary than many Chinese.

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