The official Hangzhou English Website and city guide is up and running, telling you everything you ever wanted to know, where to go and what to do in the beautiful city beside the West Lake. The Hangzhou International Information Exchange Center (HI Center) officially launched the Website and guide today, which is produced by a team of Shanghai Daily reporters, photographers and Website designers. Work included checking out transport options, visiting tourist sites, tasting food, brainstorming on design, researching and even walking around West Lake on a rainy day to see if the wet, misted scenery is as beautiful as locals claim. It is.


The end product is an engaging, user-friendly portal that offers information on government, news, tourism, dining, events, entertainment and even a brief history in clear, concise English. If you are curious about this city that dates back 5,000 years or just want to find out about local happenings, stop by the Website while surfing the Net.


At this English portal, visitors can immerse themselves in the legends surrounding the scenic West Lake. Discover how literati and statesmen Bai Juyi (772-846 AD) of the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD) and Su Dongpo (1037-1101) of the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127), contributed to the revival of West Lake. Learn about the great General Yue Fei of the Southern Song Dynasty (1127-1279) who was executed on false charges by the treacherous Minister Qin Hui. Appreciate the famous love between scholar Xu Xian and the White Snake Spirit, Bai Suzhen.


The Website gives detailed transport information to help visitors get around. This includes getting to Hangzhou by plane, train, coach or cab and getting around the city using public transport. It even provides prices for boat rides on the lake. Website maps pinpoint scenic sites and bicycle rental kiosks. It isn’t difficult to plan an excursion on a rented bicycle or visit islands in the lake.


For visitors and foreigners living in Hangzhou, there is a wealth of information on dining, sports, nightlife, services and education. The Website lists fitness centers and swimming pools, as well as reputable learning centers for language classes. The education section includes international schools and kindergartens for expats with families.


If you’re out of ideas on dining or want to try something new, check out the Website’s dining section for numerous restaurants and cafes, featuring local delicacies as well as international cuisine. Hangzhou is a cosmopolitan place to wine and dine. The city’s culinary specialties are famous, not only flavorful but filled with juicy folklore. In the Hangzhou Chinese Dining section, visitors can find reviews of restaurants serving traditional local cuisine and read about some of the dishes in the City Guide section. Don’t miss Dongpo Pork – you’re tasting more than 900 years of history.


The Hangzhou English Website provides local news and daily updates, in keeping with the HI Center’s function as a press center for reporters nationwide and worldwide.


In addition, Hangzhou International Information houses the West Lake Expo Museum; it is built on the original site of the 1929 Industrial Exhibition Hall.


Website visitors can learn about the 1929 trade exposition held at the West Lake for 137 days, attracting more than 20 million visitors. They can learn how Hangzhou silk merchant Xu Rongcun became the first Chinese to take part in the 1851 Great Exhibition in Britain (the world’s first Expo) and take home gold and silver medals for his prized „Yungkee Huzhou Silk.“


Editor: Tan Mei Yi