Hangzhou Xixi International Dragon Boat Race is held annually on Dragon Boat Festival (2 June, 2014). Click the link for other years' dates. The event has a long history and unique style.
Xixi Wetland a great place for watching a dragon boat race in Hangzhou’s urban area, and better than races in downtown Hangzhou.
One of the rare urban wetlands in China, Xixi National Wetland Park is in the west of Hangzhou City, less than 5 km from West Lake.
With rich ecological resources, a simple and natural landscape, and a profound culture, Xixi is known as one of Hangzhou's 'three Xi's' along with Xi Hu (West Lake) and Xiling (the Seal Engravers' Society). It is the first and only wetland park in China combining urban life, farming, and culture.
You have the chance to appreciate the wonderful dragon boat race, and the perfect combination of Chinese folk traditions and Olympic spirit. You can sit in the tea pavilion and enjoy tea, whilst listening to well-known Chinese operas, and feasting your eyes on the gorgeously wrought dragon boats.
After the dragon boat games is a competition for making zongzi (sticky rice dumplings) and scent bags, as well as drawing realgar at the onsite stage.
You can taste wuhuang (the 'five yellow foods', consisting of yellow croaker fish, cucumber, yellow finless eel, salted duck egg yolk, and realgar wine ('yellow wine').
Live performances include the Xixi Kungfu Show, a Chinese boxing show held on a boat, and Shaoxing Opera.
If interested, you can also go on to the Dragon Boat Exhibition Hall on Hezhu Street to learn the skill of carving the boat’s dragon head.
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Alternatively take a taxi to Hangzhou Xixi National Wetland Park (西溪国家湿地公园), or take bus K310, K506, K193, Y13, or Tour Bus 1 to Zhoujia Village, which is next to the entrance to Xixi Wetland.