A glide along the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal at night is both relaxing and romantic, an illuminating experience which will surely brighten your stay in Hangzhou. Owing to the creations of Roger Narboni, a world-renowned lighting designer, the longest man-made canal in the world is not only shining at night but is constantly alight with charm and beauty.
Departing Wulin Square wharf you leave behind an Urban City overflowing in high-rise structures and glittering department stores and then set aboard a Song dynasty-inspired barge called a Cao Fang that leisurely sails you through Hangzhou’s verdant landscape, profound culture and in-depth history.
The canal, sweeping with willow trees, is spanned by a number of century-old bridges, bordered by elegant pedestrian walkways and traversed by fleets of boats and is magnificently kept afloat with the Ming - Qing era structures mingled with modern-day apartments.
Having soaked up a number of historical sites such as West Lake Cultural Square, Xiaohezhi Street, Fuyi Granary, Xiangji Temple and Zhaohui and Chaowang Bridges your tranquil journey finally concludes at the world-renowned Gongchen Bridge(拱宸桥), the south terminus of the Beijing- Hangzhou Grand Canal.
Gongchen Bridge adjoins Qiaoxi Historic Street(桥西直街) a 2km-long bustling pedestrian zone. Home to six museums this surprisingly un-crowded hot spot is, however, packed with entertainment, local cuisine, tea houses and cultural activities that will only leave you full with knowledge and everlasting contentment.
NB: Roger Narboni’s lighting system of the Grand Canal has won an International award entitled “City—People—Light”.
Route: Wulinmen Wharf(武林门码头)—West Lake Cultural Square(西湖文化广场)—Imperial Wharf(御码头)—Fuyi Grannary(富义仓)—Emperor Qianlong’s Boat(乾隆舫)—Xiaohe Historic Street(小河直街)—Qiaoxi Historic Block(桥西直街)—Gong Chen Bridge(拱宸桥)
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Reference Fee: RMB 100/person
Route：Wulinmen(武林门)-Gongchen Bridge(拱宸桥)-Wulinmen(武林门)(1 hour for return journey)
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