Take a Cruise in West Lake

West Lake is located in the west of Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, China. This lake is one of major freshwater lake for sightseeing. It is surrounded by mountains by three sides. It covers an area of about 6.39 square kilometers, with a width of 2.8 km east to west and a length of about 3.2 km north to south. It is nearly 15 kilometers around the lake. The lake divided by Gushan Hill, Bai Causeway, Su Causeway and Yanggong Causeway. And the areas by size are called respectively Wai West Lake, Xili Lake, Bai li Lake, South Lake and Yuehu Lake. There are three small islets in Wai West Lake area, Xiao Ying Zhou Islet, Hu Xin Ting Islet and Ruan Gong Islet. Taking a cruise in West Lake is the best way to explore the beauty of the lake.

What to See

Xiao Ying Zhou Islet
Xiao Ying Zhou Islet is a small islet located in the middle of West Lake in Hangzhou. It is the largest island with beautiful scenery and quiet environment. It is also called “Three Pools Mirroring the Moon”. It has an area of 60,000 square meters. On this islet, the view is more like the gardens in South China style. There are small stone bridges, pavilions, temples, corridors. If you take the West Lake Cruise, you will have a change to board on the islet.
Xiao Ying Zhou Islet
Xiao Ying Zhou Islet

Hu Xin Ting Islet
Hu Xin Ting Islet is located in the middle of West Lake. It is smaller than Three Pools Mirroring the Moon, but larger than Ruan Gong Islet. The buildings here are originally built in 1552 in Ming Dynasty. The buildings are made with carved beams, rake angles, overhanging eaves and yellow glass roofs, looking solemn and stately.

Su Causeway
Su Causeway is a tree-lined embankment connecting the northern scenic area and southern area in West Lake. It now has a length of 2797 meters and a width of 30 to 40 meters. It was originally built by a scholar named Su Shi in 1089 in Northern Song Dynasty. It stretches to Nanping Hill to the south Beishan Hill to the north. It is about 500 meters away from in the west bank and about 2,300 meters from the eastern shore. There are six stone arch bridges along the causeway. It is the only passage across the north and south sides of the lake. Also it is place to watch the overall landscape of the lake.
Su Causeway
Su Causeway
Except for the above scenic sites, you can also have a good view to the other famous scenic spots around the lake in a distance. 

Types of Boat

If you choose to do sightseeing in West Lake area by boat, you can not only have a deeper view of the lake area, you can also board on islets like Xiao Ying Zhou Islet, Hu Xin Ting Islet and some other sites in the lake only reached by boat.

Barge
Barge is also known as gaily-painted pleasure-boat. The dock for this kind of boat is located at Hubin Park, Hangzhou Hotel and Children's Palace. It will have stops at Hu Xin Ting and Xiao Ying Zhou. This kind is the most expensive one, but the most comfortable.
Cruise in West Lake
Cruise in West Lake

Medium-sized tour boat
The docks for boarding this kind of boat are located at Qianwan Temple, Children’s Palace, Zhongshan Park, Yuewang Temple.

Small excursion ship
Docks for this small excursion ship is near to Zhongshan Park, Yang Gong Causeway.

Rowing Boat
Rowing boat is more interesting than other kinds, for it is operated by hand and feels like more traditionally. But this kind of boat can not take too many people in one time. And they can be found near to docks in Hubin Park, Zhongshan Park, Yuewang Temple. It is usually charged by per hour.
Cruise in West Lake
Cruise in West Lake

You can choose one of the kind of boat to take a Cruise in West Lake, which will give you another way to appreciate lake.