Travel Time: Hangzhou part I
Post by Eva

上有天堂,下有苏杭。

(Shàng Yǒu TiānTáng, Xià Yǒu Sū Háng)

Paradise in Heaven, Suzhou and Hangzhou on earth.

Hangzhou (杭州 HángZhōu) is considered to be the cradle of Chinese civilisation with its history spanning over more than 2,200 years. Besides being a major tourist attraction and being renown for its scenic beauty, Hangzhou is also the provincial capital, centre of polices, economy, culture and tourism of Zhejiang (浙江 ZhèJiāng) province. Hangzhou lies on the lower reaches of Qiantang River and is the southern end of the 1794-kilometre long Grand Canal. Most if its area is flat, but some parts are hilly.

Avoid the holiday season and the weekends like the plague. Also, check the state of the West Lake (Hangzhou’s main attraction) before heading over there – sometimes the lake is covered in algae which might ruin the idea of a romantic getaway. Hanghzou is approximately 170 km away from Shanghai, but the bullet trains will get you there in a little over an hour. You can choose to stay for a day only, but we find that two days are a minimum.

Courtesy of Ian C from Flickr

Courtesy of Ian C from Flickr

Population: 6.16 million

Urban population: 1.75 million

Area: 16.596 square kilometres

How to get there? (from Shanghai)

By bus: You can take a bus from any of Shanghai’s long-distance bus stations. The buses run daily between the hours of 7 am to 7 pm. The ticket costs around RMB 70 and the journey itself takes between 2-3 hours, depending on the traffic.

By train:

There are more than 40 trains departing from Hongqiao train station on any given day. The journey on the high speed train takes around an hour reaching insane speeds of up to 350km/h.

Buying a Train/Bus Ticket

  • 在哪儿买车票? Zài Nǎr Mǎi ChēPiào? Where can I buy the ticket?
  • 我要去杭州。 Wǒ Yào Qù HángZhōu. I want to go to Hangzhou.
  • 我要买一张去 杭州的票。 Wǒ Yào Mǎi YīZhāng Qù HángZhōu De Piào. I would like to buy one ticket to Hangzhou.
  • 我要买两张去 杭州的票。 Wǒ Yào Mǎi LiǎngZhāng Qù HángZhōu De Piào. I would like to buy two tickets to Hangzhou.
  • 我要买三张去 杭州的票。 Wǒ Yào Mǎi SānZhāng Qù HángZhōu De Piào. I would like to buy three tickets to Hangzhou.
  • 我要买四张去 杭州的票。 Wǒ Yào Mǎi SìZhāng Qù HángZhōu De Piào. I would like to buy four tickets to Hangzhou.
  • 单程票 “DānChéng Piào” Single journey
  • 往返票 WǎngFǎnPiào Return journey
  • 车票 ChēPiào Ticket
  • 多少钱? DuōShao Qián? How much?
  • 要多久? Yào DuōJiǔ? How long does it (the journey) take?
  • 最后一趟车是什么时候? ZuìHòu YīTàng Chē Shì ShénMe ShíHou? When is the last train/bus?
  • 有早晨的车吗? Yǒu ZǎoChen De Chē Ma? Is there a morning train/bus?
  • 有晚上的车吗? Yǒu WǎnShang De Chē Ma? Is there an evening train/bus?
  • 我们该什么时候到? WǒMen Gāi ShénMe ShíHou Dao? When are we going to arrive?
  • 我们都是一起来的。 WǒMen Dōu Shì YīQǐ Lái De. We are all (travelling) together.

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