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Marvelous maples brighten West Lake attractions

IN spring, Hangzhou¡¯s West Lake is thronged with travelers who come to admire its elegant willows and colorful flowers. In the summer, it¡¯s the lotus leaves which lure tourists from far and wide.

In the fall though, the fiery red, yellow and orange maple leaves are the big draw. With the autumnal colors now at their most vibrant, here are some of the best places to go leaf-peeping around West Lake.


Nine Streams and Eighteen Creeks

To some, the entrance of the Nine Streams and Eighteen Creeks might seem like nothing special. Walking through the secluded site though, the meandering waterways and orange maple trees conjure a unique feeling of calm that is sure to transport visitors to a place of inner serenity.

 


Lingyin scenic area

One of China¡¯s most famous Buddhist temples, Lingyin Temple is surrounded by numerous varieties of maples trees. This time of year, the road leading to the temple is flanked by diverse tints of orange and red leaves, contrasted against the green of bamboo and pine trees.

The crisp fall air is a delightful complement to the agreeable natural scenery.

 


Lotus in the Breeze at Crooked Courtyard

As its name implies, this is a prime spot to observe the West Lake¡¯s lotus flowers. It is one of the West Lake Top 10 Scenic Spots. But as the lotus plants wither, the view changes to one of vigorous red maple leaves nestled amidst traditional Chinese black-and-white architecture.

This area is popular with shutterbugs, many of whom come to capture the turning leaves reflecting on the water of the lake. But whether you come with a camera or not, be sure to stroll along the wooden bridge leading to the garden¡¯s Chinese pavilions if you want to truly immerse yourself in the fiery fall colors.

Visitors to the garden should also visit the nearby Yanggong Causeway and the Flowery Nursery, both of which offer splendid fall views.


Prince¡¯s Bay Park

Prince¡¯s Bay Park is known for its spring tulip exhibition, but in autumn the park is no less beautiful. Indeed, as temperatures drop and visitor flows trickle off, the park becomes a serene and tranquil destination.

Drawing heavily from Dutch architecture and design, the park features a windmill and a church, in addition to its numerous natural features. During the fall, its many crisscrossing paths and lanes are lined with glorious maple leaves.

 


Longjing Road

Stretching from the Hangzhou Botanic Garden to the China National Tea Museum, Longjing Road, named after the Longjing variety of tea, is one of Hangzhou¡¯s most iconic scenic roads. With tea bushes sloping on either side, the turning fall maple leaves add an extra dose of color. With sections skirting the West Lake, the road is popular with strollers and bicyclists, who will find plenty of restaurants, cafes and teahouses along the way when it comes time to rest.

 

Source: Shanghai Daily

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