Hangzhou is a popular city because of its fascinating scenery and tea culture. West Lake is the most famous attraction. Hangzhou is one of the largest production bases of Longjing tea. Nearby quaint water towns are also worthy of a visit. An in-depth Hangzhou tour needs 2 to 3 days depending on your interests and schedule.
Hangzhou is abundant in tourism resources. How to get an authentic experience during your limited Hangzhou tour is a daunting problem. Read on to find the answer from this article. The following three Hangzhou day tours will give you inspiration.
1. A Day Tour to Visit West Lake and Experience the Tea Culture
- Features: West Lake, tea culture experience
- Highlights: go boating on West Lake, visit a local tea farmer’s home, pick tea leaves, stir-fry some tea, watch a tea ceremony, taste some tea food
- Duration: about 8 hours (including 4 hours to visit West Lake and 4 hours for the tea culture experience)
There is no doubt that West Lake is a must-see attraction during your Hangzhou day tour. There are three popular ways to visit West Lake.
The first one is to go biking. There are many spots to rent a bike around West Lake. You can circle around West Lake and go wherever you are interested in visiting.
The second option is taking a boat. Have a leisurely time in a boat and appreciate the landscape. Paddling your own boat is highly recommended. You can paddle a boat across the lake and enjoy your time at your own leisure.
The last one is visiting in a battery car. The battery car travels around the lake. You can wave at the driver of one to get in at any spot around West Lake.
If you want to have a cultural experience, Meijiawu is a place you shouldn’t miss in your Hangzhou day tour. Meijiawu Tea Plantation is the place of origin of the best Longjing tea.
You can visit a local tea farmer’s home and learn about how to pick tea leaves in the tea plantation. After your tea-picking experience, you can get involved with the process of stir-frying tea. After that, appreciate a Chinese tea ceremony. It can help you gain a deeper understanding of Chinese tea culture. Finally, taste delicious tea food. Enjoy the aroma of tea as it blends with the freshness of the food in your mouth.
Meijiawu has many outdoor tea gardens. Both adults and kids can enjoy themselves in the fresh air. It is close to West Lake, being about 20 minutes’ drive away.
On our private Hangzhou day tours, a local tour guide and a private car will escort you. You just tell your guide your preferences and he/she will arrange everything for you.
2. One-Day Tour to Explore a Nearby Water Town
- Feature: a well-preserved water town
- Highlights: ancient buildings, old bridges, take a rowing boat, try traditional activities
- Duration: about 8 hours (including 4 hours for visiting attractions and 4 hours for driving)
When people talk about Jiangnan (the area south of the Yangtze Delta), they think of quaint water towns. Water towns are the highlight of your Hangzhou day tour. There are many charming water towns near Hangzhou.
Nanxun Water Town is the most authentic, tranquil, and less commercialized one. It is about 2 hours’ drive from the city of Hangzhou.
Visit a garden that once belonged to the richest person in Nanxun and explore an old residence, which is known as the “top private residence of Jiangnan”. When strolling around Nanxun Water Town, you will feel like you are going back in time to ancient China.
You can take part in many activities to experience traditional Chinese culture, such as making your own writing brush, learning to write your name in Chinese, and trying Chinese block printing. You can watch a traditional wedding performance to see how a traditional wedding was conducted in the water town.
There are other water towns, such as Wuzhen and Xitang, near Hangzhou. They are also beautiful. If you are interested in these water towns, we can also arrange for you to visit them. Our Hangzhou day tour can be customized.
3. A Daytrip to Discover Hangzhou City
- Features: history and culture, hi-tech and cultural experience
- Highlights: ancient temple, World Heritage Site, shopping
- Duration: about 8 hours (each attraction needs 1 or 2 hours)
In addition to West Lake, there are many historical attractions in the downtown area that are worthy of a visit during your Hangzhou day tour.
Lingyin Temple: It is one of the largest and most visited Buddhist temples in China. It hosts many Buddhas and Buddhist treasures.
The Grand Canal: It is a famous World Heritage Site in Hangzhou. It offers a nice view of China's typical waterside villages, arched stone bridges, and ancient riversides. There are clusters of museums along the Grand Canal where you can experience some traditional Chinese handicrafts, such as painting on a paper umbrella, and have an experience interacting with technology.
Chenghuang Pavilion: It is a seven-story archaize building with the architectural style of the Southern Song (960–1279) and Yuan (1279–1368) dynasties. You can enjoy a delicious dessert and appreciate the beautiful view of West Lake there.
Qinghefang Pedestrian Street: It is an ancient street lined with shops and restaurants. It is a shopping place for souvenirs and local specialties.
You can spend more time in your favorite place. Our schedule for your Hangzhou day trip is flexible.
Let Us Optimize Your Hangzhou Tour
Hangzhou is a beautiful city with many attractions. Whether it’s your first visit or you want go there again, we can create an authentic travel experience and help you to optimize your Hangzhou tour. Our local guides know the best of Hangzhou and our drivers will smooth out getting around. See our Hangzhou tour suggestions for reference:
- One-Day Dragon Well Tea Culture and West Lake Tour - see the beautiful scenery of West Lake and learn about the tea culture in Meijiawu Village.
- 2-Day Hangzhou Highlights and Cultural Experience - visit attractions in downtown Hangzhou, such as Lingyin Temple and Grand Canal, and explore Meijiawu Village.
- 5-Day Shanghai, Hangzhou, and Water Town Tour - experience the highlights of Shanghai and Hangzhou, and have fun in Nanxun Water Town.
All our itineraries can be customized. Just tell us your interests, requirements, and travel time. Let us tailor-make your Hangzhou tour.