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West Lake

An old Chinese saying praises, "There is heaven above, Suzhou and Hangzhou below." And the West Lake is a like a shining pearl inlaid on Hangzhou. The famous Song Dynasty poet Su Dongpo (960-1127) compared the West Lake to Xi Zi, the most beautiful woman in ancient China, and composed the poem "Ripping water shimmering on sunny day, Misty mountains shrouded the rain; Plain or gaily decked out like Xizi; West Lake is always alluring."

The West Lake, located in Hangzhou, a half hours drive from Shanghai, comprises five distinct sections, covering an area of this 5.68 square kilometers. The largest part is known as the Outer Lake and it is bounded by the North Inner Lake, Yuehu Lake, West Inner Lake and Lesser South Lake. Held in the embrace of hilly peaks on three sides, this water wonderland has been an attraction for centuries and it is small wonder that it was a favorite imperial retreat.

Cruising on West Lake, visitors are sure to revel in its charm. West Lake, like a landscape painting, will cause you to marvel at its beauty and will perhaps make you feel as though you have stepped into a land of magic and fantasy.

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