Shanghai Daily - - HANGZHOU SPECIAL -

is said that West Lake is for tourists, but Wu Moun­tain is for lo­cal res­i­dents as it holds more na­tive mem­o­ries. Lo­cated at the top of the moun­tain, Chenghuang Pav­il­ion, lit­er­ally trans­lated as “city god pav­il­ion,” is now an em­bod­i­ment of the city’s soul.

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With story-telling paint­ings, a perfect view and the Hangzhou Pav­il­ion moved from the World Expo Shang­hai site, the 41.6-me­ter-tall pav­il­ion is home to the past, present and fu­ture as­pi­ra­tions of the city.

The seven-story build­ing’s first three floors are open to tourists. The first two floors are filled with re­lief paint­ings re­call­ing Hangzhou’s time as the an­cient cap­i­tal city of the South­ern Song Dy­nasty (11271279).

The wooden re­lief paint­ings on the first floor in­tro­duce old Hangzhou cus­toms such as the tea cer­e­mony and the royal dragon boat race on the West Lake. Most im­pres­sive of all is the 31.5 by 3.65 me­ters “The Land­scape of Hangzhou in the South­ern Song Dy­nasty,” that de­picts in de­tail the an­cient city, in­clud­ing its ar­chi­tec­ture and lively scenes of peo­ple’s busy life.

The 11 re­lief paint­ings on the sec­ond floor are made from mud and oil, a crafts­man­ship dat­ing back 800 years. The paint­ings tell his­tor­i­cal sto­ries about an­cient em­per­ors, of­fi­cials, busi­ness­men, artists and monks in Hangzhou.

On the third-floor ter­race, one can en­joy a panoramic view of the West Lake as well as the whole city. A night view is also avail­able as the pav­il­ion opens un­til 10pm. It is the best place to en­joy the view of the lake with a sip of tea and a moun­tain breeze on a week­end after­noon.

The ex­hibits from the Hangzhou Pav­il­ion at World Expo Shang­hai 2010 have added a mod­ern touch to the his­tor­i­cal pav­il­ion. There is also a World Expo-themed ex­hi­bi­tion hall on the sec­ond floor of the Chenghuang Pav­il­ion, fea­tur­ing dif­fer­ent Expo pavil­ions.

In April 2008, Hangzhou’s wa­ter con­trol project, “To har­ness five waters, to cre­ate a qual­ity Hangzhou,” was se­lected for dis­play at the Ur­ban Best Prac­tices Area of the Expo. The ex­hi­bi­tion shows how the city har­mo­niously co- ex­ists with its sur­round­ing wa­ter sys­tems such as the West Lake, Qiantang River and Grand Canal. Ad­mis­sion: 30 yuan Ad­dress: No. 3, Wu Moun­tain Open­ing hours: 7: 30am-10pm

Night view of Chenghuang Pav­il­ion

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