Hangzhou ,formerly romanized as Hangchow, is the capital and most populous city of Zhejiang Province in east China. It sits at the head of Hangzhou Bay, which separates Shanghai and Ningbo. Hangzhou grew to prominence as the southern terminus of the Grand Canal and has been one of the most renowned and prosperous cities in China for much of the last millennium, due in part to its beautiful natural scenery. The city's West Lake is its best-known attraction.
Hangzhou is classified as a sub-provincial city and forms the core of the Hangzhou metropolitan area, the fourth-largest in China. During the 2010 Chinese census, the metropolitan area held 21.102 million people over an area of 34,585 km2(13,353 sq mi). Hangzhou prefecture had a registered population of 9,018,000 in 2015.
In September 2015, Hangzhou was awarded the 2022 Asian Games. It will be the third Chinese city to play host to the Asian Games after Beijing 1990 and Guangzhou 2010. On November 16, 2015, President Xi Jinping announced that Hangzhou would host the eleventh G-20 summit on September 4–5, 2016.
|POPULATION :||• Sub-provincial city 9,018,000
• Urban 7,081,700
• Metro 21,267,000 Hangzhou Metropolitan Area (including Hangzhou, Shaoxing, Jiaxing, Huzhou)
|TIME ZONE :||China Standard (UTC+8)|
|LANGUAGE :||Standard Chinese or Mandarin (Putonghua, based on the Beijing dialect), Yue (Cantonese), Wu (Shanghainese), Minbei (Fuzhou), Minnan (Hokkien-Taiwanese), Xiang, Gan, Hakka dialects, minority languages (see Ethnic groups entry)|
|RELIGION :||Daoist (Taoist), Buddhist, Christian 3%-4%, Muslim 1%-2%; note: officially atheist|
|AREA :||• Sub-provincial city 16,840.76 km2 (6,502.25 sq mi)
• Urban 3,317.9 km2 (1,281.0 sq mi)
• Metro 34,585 km2 (13,353 sq mi)
|COORDINATES :||30°15′N 120°10′E|
|SEX RATIO :||• Male: 51.83
• Female: 48.17
|ETHNIC :||Han Chinese 91.5%, Zhuang, Manchu, Hui, Miao, Uyghur, Tujia, Yi, Mongol, Tibetan, Buyi, Dong, Yao, Korean, and other nationalities 8.5%|
|AREA CODE :||571|
|POSTAL CODE :||310000|
|DIALING CODE :||+86 571|
|WEBSITE :||Official Website|
Hangzhou is renowned for its historic relics and natural beauty. It is known as one of the most beautiful cities in China, also ranking as one of the most scenic cities. Although Hangzhou has been through many recent urban developments, it still retains its historical and cultural heritage. Today, tourism remains an important factor for Hangzhou's economy. One of Hangzhou's most popular sights is West Lake, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The West Lake Cultural Landscape covers an area of 3,323 ha (8,210 acres) and includes some of Hangzhou's most notable historic and scenic places. Adjacent to the lake is a scenic area which includes historical pagodas, cultural sites, as well as the natural beauty of the lake and hills, including Phoenix Mountain. There are two causeways across the lake.
Other places of interest:
- The world's largest tidal bore races up theQiantang River through Hangzhou reaching up to 12 m (39 ft) in height.
- The Residence of Hu Xueyan (胡雪岩故居) located on Yuanbao Street was built in 1872 by Hu Xueyan, a native of Anhui, a very successful businessman. It was restored and opened to the public in 2001.
- Xixi National Wetland Park. Established with the aim of preserving the wetland ecological system, it covers an area of about 10 km². Fish ponds and reed beds have been restored and it is home to many types of birds. It holds a temple and several historic rural houses.
- Hangzhou Botanical Garden
- Hangzhou Zoo
- Old China Street on He Fang Street (He Fang Jieor“Qing He Fang”，literally “neighbourhood along the river”), which offers various souvenirs and renowned Longjing tea.
- Jade Springs (Yu Quan)
- West Lake Cultural Square is one of the tallest building in the city centre(about 160m)and houses the Zhejiang Natural History Museum and Zhejiang Museum of Science and Technology.
- Qiandao Lake is a man-made lake with the largest number of islands in Chun'an County,an administrative area of Hangzhou government . These islands are different in size and shape, and have distinctive scene.
- Grand Canal
- Longjing tea fields, west of the lake, and the source of China's most famous tea.
In March 2013 The Hangzhou Tourism Commission started an online campaign via Facebook, the 'Modern Marco Polo' campaign. Over the next year nearly 26,000 participants applied from around the globe, in the hopes of becoming Hangzhou's first foreign tourism ambassador. In a press conference in Hangzhou on May 20, 2014,Liam Bates was announced as the successful winner. The 26-year-old won a €40,000 contract and is the first foreigner ever to be appointed by China's government in such an official role.
The celebrated neolithic culture of Hemudu is known to have inhabitedYuyao, 100 km (62 mi) south-east of Hangzhou, as far back as seven thousand years ago. It was during this time that rice was first cultivated in southeast China. Excavations have established that the jade-carving Liangzhu culture (named for its type site just northwest of Hangzhou) inhabited the area immediately around the present city around five thousand years ago.
The first of Hangzhou's present neighborhoods to appear in written records was Yuhang, which probably preserves an old Baiyue name.
Hangzhou was made the seat of the zhou (very roughly, "county") of Hang in AD 589, entitling it to a city wall which was constructed two years later. By a longstanding convention also seen in other cities like Guangzhou and Fuzhou, the city took on the name of the area it administered and became known as Hangzhou. Hangzhou was at the southern end of China's Grand Canal which extends to Beijing. The canal evolved over centuries but reached its full length by 609.
It is listed as one of the Seven Ancient Capitals of China. It was first the capital of the Wuyue Kingdom from 907 to 978 during the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms Period. Named Xifu at the time, it was one of the three great bastions of culture in southern China during the tenth century, along with Nanjing and Chengdu. Leaders of Wuyue were noted patrons of the arts, particularly of Buddhist temple architecture and artwork. Hangzhou also became a cosmopolitan center, drawing scholars from throughout China and conducting diplomacy with neighboring Chinese states, and also with Japan, Korea, and the Khitan Liao dynasty.
In the Tang dynasty, Bai Juyi was appointed governor of Hangzhou. Already an accomplished and famous poet, his deeds at Hangzhou have led to his being praised as a great governor. He noticed that the farmland nearby depended on the water of West Lake, but due to the negligence of previous governors, the old dyke had collapsed, and the lake so dried out that the local farmers were suffering from severe drought. He ordered the construction of a stronger and taller dyke, with a dam to control the flow of water, thus providing water for irrigation and mitigating the drought problem. The livelihood of local people of Hangzhou improved over the following years. Bai Juyi used his leisure time to enjoy the beauty of West Lake, visiting it almost daily. He also ordered the construction of a causeway connecting Broken Bridge with Solitary Hill to allow walking, instead of requiring a boat. He then had willows and other trees planted along the dyke, making it a beautiful landmark. This causeway was later named "Bai Causeway", in his honor.
In 1089, while another renowned poet Su Shi(Su Dongpo) was the city's governor, he used 200,000 workers to construct a 2.8 km (1.7 mi) long causeway across West Lake, which the Qianlong Emperor considered particularly attractive in the early morning of the spring time. The lake was once a lagoon tens of thousands of years ago. Silt then blocked the way to the sea and the lake was formed. A drill in the lake-bed in 1975 found the sediment of the sea, which confirmed its origin. Artificial preservation prevented the lake from evolving into a marshland. The Su Causeway built by Su Shi, and the Bai Causeway built by Bai Juyi, a Tang dynasty poet who was once the governor of Hangzhou, were both built out of mud dredged from the lake bottom. The lake is surrounded by hills on the northern and western sides. The Baochu Pagoda sits on the Baoshi Hill to the north of the lake.
Arab merchants lived in Hangzhou during the Song dynasty, due to the fact that the oceangoing trade passages took precedence over land trade during this time. There were also Arabic inscriptions from the 13th century and 14th century. During the later period of the Yuan dynasty, Muslims were persecuted through the banning of their traditions, and they participated in revolts against the Mongols. The Fenghuangshi mosque was constructed by an Egyptian trader who moved to Hangzhou. Ibn Battuta is known to have visited the city of Hangzhou in 1345; he noted its charm and described how the city sat on a beautiful lake and was surrounded by gentle green hills. During his stay at Hangzhou, he was particularly impressed by the large number of well-crafted and well-painted Chinese wooden ships with colored sails and silk awnings in the canals. He attended a banquet held by Qurtai, the Yuan Mongol administrator of the city, who according to Ibn Battuta, was fond of the skills of local Chinese conjurers.
Hangzhou was chosen as the new capital of the Southern Song dynasty in 1132, when most of northern China had been conquered by the Jurchens in the Jin–Song wars. The Song court had retreated south to the city in 1129 from its original capital in Kaifeng, after it was captured by the Jurchens in the Jingkang Incident of 1127. From Kaifeng they moved to Nanjing, modern Shangqiu, then to Yangzhou in 1128. The government of the Song intended it to be a temporary capital. However, over the decades Hangzhou grew into a major commercial and cultural center of the Song dynasty. It rose from a middling city of no special importance to one of the world's largest and most prosperous. Once the prospect of retaking northern China had diminished, government buildings in Hangzhou were extended and renovated to better befit its status as an imperial capital and not just a temporary one. The imperial palace in Hangzhou, modest in size, was expanded in 1133 with new roofed alleyways, and in 1148 with an extension of the palace walls.
From the early 12th century until the Mongol invasion of 1276, Hangzhou remained the capital and was known as Lin'an. It served as the seat of the imperial government, a center of trade and entertainment, and the nexus of the main branches of the civil service. During that time the city was a gravitational center of Chinese civilization: what used to be considered "central China" in the north was taken by the Jin, an ethnic minority dynasty ruled by Jurchens.
Numerous philosophers, politicians, and men of literature, including some of the most celebrated poets in Chinese history such as Su Shi, Lu You, and Xin Qiji came here to live and die. Hangzhou is also the birthplace and final resting place of the scientist Shen Kuo (1031–1095 AD), his tomb being located in the Yuhang district.
During the Southern Song dynasty, commercial expansion, an influx of refugees from the conquered north, and the growth of the official and military establishments, led to a corresponding population increase and the city developed well outside its 9th-century ramparts. According to the Encyclopædia Britannica, Hangzhou had a population of over 2 million at that time, while historian Jacques Gernet has estimated that the population of Hangzhou numbered well over one million by 1276. (Official Chinese census figures from the year 1270 listed some 186,330 families in residence and probably failed to count non-residents and soldiers.) It is believed that Hangzhou was the largest city in the world from 1180 to 1315 and from 1348 to 1358.
Because of the large population and densely crowded (often multi-story) wooden buildings, Hangzhou was particularly vulnerable to fires. Major conflagrations destroyed large sections of the city in 1132, 1137, 1208, 1229, 1237, and 1275 while smaller fires occurred nearly every year. The 1237 fire alone was recorded to have destroyed 30,000 dwellings. To combat this threat, the government established an elaborate system for fighting fires, erected watchtowers, devised a system of lantern and flag signals to identify the source of the flames and direct the response, and charged more than 3,000 soldiers with the task of putting out fires.
The city of Hangzhou was besieged and captured by the advancing Mongol armies of Kublai Khan in 1276, three years before the final collapse of the empire. The capital of the new Yuan Dynasty was established in the city of Dadu (Beijing).
The Venetian merchant Marco Polo supposedly visited Hangzhou in the late 13th century. In his book, he records that the city was "greater than any in the world". He called the city Kinsay, Quinsai, or Kinsai, which is unrelated to its then-current names but seems to be a Persianized form of the Chinese word for "capital". Although he exaggerated that the city was over one hundred miles in diameter and had 12,000 stone bridges, he still presented elegant prose about the country: "The number and wealth of the merchants, and the amount of goods that passed through their hands, was so enormous that no man could form a just estimate thereof." The renowned 14th-century Moroccan explorer Ibn Battuta said it was "the biggest city I have ever seen on the face of the earth."
Ming and after
The city remained an important port until the middle of the Ming dynasty era, when its harbor slowly silted up.
In 1856 and 1860, the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom occupied Hangzhou and caused heavy damage to the city.
Hangzhou was ruled by the Republic of China government under the Kuomintang from 1928 to 1949. On May 3, 1949, the People's Liberation Army entered Hangzhou and the city came under Communist control. After Deng Xiaoping's reformist policies began in 1978, Hangzhou took advantage of being situated in the Yangtze River Delta to bolster its development. It is now one of China's most prosperous major cities.
As late as the latter part of the 16th and early 17th centuries, the city was an important center of Chinese Jewry, and may have been the original home of the better-known Kaifeng Jewish community.
There was formerly a Jewish synagogue in Ningbo, as well as one in Hangzhou, but no traces of them are now discoverable, and the only Jews known to exist in China were in Kaifeng.
Muslim communities during Ming and Qing dynasties
In 1848, during the Qing dynasty, Hangzhou was described as the "stronghold" of Islam in China, the city containing several mosques with Arabic inscriptions. A Hui from Ningbo also told an Englishman that Hanzhou was the "stronghold" of Islam in Zhejiang province, containing multiple mosques, compared to his small congregation of around 30 families in Ningbo for his mosque.
Within the city of Hangzhou are two notable mosques: the Great Mosque of Hangzhou and the Phoenix Mosque.
Hangzhou's climate is humid subtropical with four distinctive seasons, characterised by long, very hot, humid summers and chilly, cloudy and drier winters (with occasional snow). The mean annual temperature is 17.0 °C (62.6 °F), with monthly daily averages ranging from 4.6 °C (40.3 °F) in January to 28.9 °C (84.0 °F) in July. The city receives an average annual rainfall of 1,438.0 mm (56.6 in) and is affected by the plum rains of the Asian monsoon in June. In late summer (August to September), Hangzhou suffers typhoon storms, but typhoons seldom strike it directly. Generally they make landfall along the southern coast of Zhejiang, and affect the area with strong winds and stormy rains. Extremes since 1951 have ranged from −9.6 °C (15 °F) on 6 February 1969 up to 41.6 °C (107 °F) on 9 August 2013; unofficial readings have reached −10.5 °C (13 °F), set on 29 December 1912 and 24 January 1916, up to 42.1 °C (108 °F), set on 10 August 1930. With monthly percent possible sunshine ranging from 30% in March to 51% in August, the city receives 1,709.4 hours of sunshine annually.
Hangzhou is located in northwestern Zhejiang province, at the southern end of the Grand Canal of China, which runs to Beijing, in the south-central portion of the Yangtze River Delta. Its administrative area (sub-provincial city) extends west to the mountainous parts of Anhui province, and east to the coastal plain near Hangzhou Bay. The city center is built around the eastern and northern sides of the West Lake, just north of the Qiantang River.
Hangzhou's economy has rapidly developed since its opening up in 1992. It is an industrial city with many diverse sectors such as light industry, agriculture, and textiles. It is considered an important manufacturing base and logistics hub for coastal China.
The 2001 GDP of Hangzhou was RMB ¥156.8 billion, which ranked second among all of the provincial capitals after Guangzhou. The city has more than tripled its GDP since then, increasing from RMB ¥156.8 billion in 2001 to RMB ¥701.1 billion in 2011 and GDP per capita increasing from US$3,025 to US$12,447.
The city has developed many new industries, including medicine, information technology, heavy equipment, automotive components, household electrical appliances, electronics, telecommunication, fine chemicals, chemical fibre and food processing.
Economic and Technological Development Zones
Hangzhou Economic & Technological Development Zone was established and approved as a national development zone by the State Council in 1993. It covers an area of 104.7 km2 (40.4 sq mi). Encouraged industries include electronic information, biological medicine, machinery and household appliances manufacturing, and food processing.
Hangzhou Export Processing Zone was established on April 27, 2000 upon approval of the State Council. It was one of the first zones and the only one in Zhejiang Province to be approved by the government. Its total planned area is 2.92 km2. It is located close to Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport and Hangzhou Port.
Hangzhou Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zone was set up with approval from the State Council as a state level Hi-tech Industrial Development Zone in March 1991. The HHTZ is composed of three parts, with the main regions being the Zhijiang Sci-Tech Industrial Park and Xiasha Sci-Tech Industrial Park. HHTZ has become one of the most influential hi-tech innovation and hi-tech industry bases in Zhejiang Province. As of 2013, HHTZ hosts more than 1,100 software developers and BPO enterprises. Major companies such as Motorola, Nokia and Siemens have established R&D centers in the zone. In 2011, the GDP of the zone rose by 13.1 percent, amounting to RMB 41.63 billion. This accounted for 5.9 percent of Hangzhou’s total GDP. The HHTZ positions itself as the "Silicon Valley" of China. The Alibaba Group, the world's largest online B2B portal and China's largest website in terms of market value, is headquartered in the zone.
The sub-provincial city of Hangzhou comprises 9 districts, 2 county-level cities, and 2counties. The six central urban districts occupy 683 km2 (264 sq mi) and have 3,560,400 people. The three suburban districts occupy 4,193 km2 (1,619 sq mi) and have 3,399,300 people.
|Subdivision||Chinese||Pinyin||Population (2010)||Area (km2)||Density|
|Shangcheng District||上城区||Shàngchéng Qū||344,594||18.30||18,830.27|
|Xiacheng District||下城区||Xiàchéng Qū||526,096||31.46||16,722.70|
|Jianggan District||江干区||Jiānggàn Qū||998,783||210.22||4,751.13|
|Gongshu District||拱墅区||Gǒngshù Qū||551,874||87.49||6,307.85|
|Xihu District||西湖区||Xīhú Qū||820,017||308.70||2,656.36|
|Binjiang District||滨江区||Bīnjiāng Qū||319,027||72.02||4,429.70|
|Xiaoshan District||萧山区||Xiāoshān Qū||1,511,290||1,420.22||1,064.12|
|Yuhang District||余杭区||Yúháng Qū||1,170,290||1,223.56||956.46|
|Fuyang District||富阳区||Fùyáng Qū||717,694||1,831.20||391.93|
|Tonglu County||桐庐县||Tónglú Xiàn||406,450||1,825.00||222.71|
|Chun'an County||淳安县||Chún'ān Xiàn||336,843||4,427.00||76.09|
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