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Hangzhou (17/25-Nov) - Travel around the world

Hangzhou (17/25-Nov)

After the cold Suzhou I headed (under some light snow) to the train station to catch a train to Hangzhou... hoping to find a warm hotel there to recover from my cold :)

Well booking the ticket to Hangzhou proved slightly more complicated as the cashier asked more questions which I did not understand, finally she said something like "no seat" (in Mandarin)... I thought it was a train without seat booking, but no, I just had to stand 5 hours in the train as the train was fully booked! Well after this long trip I arrived in the lovely Hangzhou. As a matter of fact, from the Lonely Planet description I was expecting to find a town similar to Suzhou... I mean interesting but similar. Well if Suzhou is mostly a touristic town, Hangzhou is more like a capital with lots of big shopping malls, big buildings... in addition to hosting important places of Chinese heritage, the main one being the famous West Lake. As a matter of fact I spent the first few days in the hotel, enjoying a nice place, working on my Mandarin, reading, watching TV... recovering from my cold. When the weather improved slightly, I started to go out and enjoy the nice things Hangzhou has to offer... West Lake obviously, some temples, the Longjing village where they grow the Longjing tea, I also went to have massage... by blind masseurs. They are supposed to be the best masseurs but from my experience they are the most violent ones. ahaha... My back was painful for 2 days after the massage. Well.. after one week there it was time to go somewhere else... Shanghai!