West Lake

West Lake or Xī Hú (Chinese: 西湖; literally "West Lake") is a freshwater lake located in the historic area of Hangzhou, the capital of Zhejiang province in eastern China. The lake is divided by the causeways of Sū Dī (苏提 / 蘇堤), Bái Dī (白堤), and Yánggōng Dī (杨公堤 / 楊公堤). There are numerous temples, pagodas, gardens, and artificial islands within the lake.

West Lake has influenced poets and painters throughout the ages for its natural beauty and historical relics, and it has been among the most important sources of inspiration for Chinese garden designers, as evidenced by the impact it had on various Chinese classical gardens. It was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2011, and was described as having "influenced garden design in the rest of China as well as Japan and Korea over the centuries" and as reflecting "an idealized fusion between humans and nature."

Read more about West Lake:  Overview, History, Geography, Influences, Attractions, Ten Scenes of Xī Hú, Gallery

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