Don’t miss this 4-day tour if you want to uncover the beauty and culture of Hangzhou and Putuoshan. In Hangzhou, you will explore the West Lake, Lingyin Temple, Meijiawu Tea Village, and the China National Tea Museum to delve into the rich history and art of tea. Cruise the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal, visit the Qiaoxi Conservation Area, China Museum of Knives, Scissors & Swords, and the China Umbrella Museum.
In Putuoshan, marvel at the world’s tallest Guanyin statue, the Statue of Standing Nanhai Guanyin, and visit the island’s major Buddhist temples—Puji Temple, Fayu Temple, and Huiji Temple. Immerse yourself in the natural wonders of One Thousand-Step Beach, Unwilling-to-leave Temple, Purple Bamboo Forest, and Feilai Peak.
2. Visit the Statue of Standing Nanhai Guanyin, the tallest statue of Guanyin in the world, and the three major Buddhist temples on Putuoshan: Puji Temple, Fayu Temple, and Huiji Temple.
3. Learn about the history and culture of tea at the Meijiawu Tea Village and the China National Tea Museum, and taste the famous Longjing tea.
4. Explore the Qiaoxi Conservation Area and the China Museum of Knives, Scissors & Swords, and watch a show of painting on oiled paper umbrellas.
- Day 1: Shanghai to Putuoshan (L)Putuoshan: Puji Temple, One Thousand-Step Beach, Unwilling-to-leave Temple, Statue of Standing Nanhai Guanyin
This morning, our guide and driver will pick you up from your Shanghai hotel. A scenic 3-hour drive will take you to Zhu Sha Jian, a charming port town on Zhejiang province's coast.
Upon arrival, hop on a ferry for a delightful 20-minute ride to Putuoshan, one of China's sacred Buddhist mountains and home to Guanyin, the Goddess of Mercy. Check into your hotel on the island, take some time to relax, and freshen up.
In the afternoon, explore Puji Temple, the island's largest and oldest temple dating back to the Tang dynasty. Marvel at the impressive architecture and various Guanyin statues while learning about the island's Buddhist history and culture.
Later, take a sightseeing bus to One Thousand-Step Beach, a beautiful sandy spot with crystal-clear water. Enjoy some free time for relaxation, or soaking up the sun.
Continue your journey on the sightseeing bus to Unwilling-to-leave Temple, perched on a cliff with a captivating legend attached. The temple is named after a Japanese monk, Hui E, who unsuccessfully tried to transport a Guanyin statue to Japan, only to have it return to Putuoshan. Finally, explore the serene Purple Bamboo Forest, a scenic area with lush bamboo groves and tranquil paths.
The day concludes with a visit to the Statue of Standing Nanhai Guanyin, a 33-meter-high bronze statue standing in the sea—a symbol of the island's grandeur. Capture some photos before returning to your hotel for a restful night on Putuoshan.
- Day 2: Putuoshan to Hangzhou (B, L)Fayu Temple, Huiji Temple, Sky Lamp Stage
After breakfast, head to Fayu Temple, the island's second-largest temple, nestled on Foding Mountain's slope. Admire the intricate carvings, paintings, and calligraphy, along with the ancient trees and rock gardens in the courtyard. Explore the collection of Buddhist scriptures and relics housed in the temple.
Next, embark on a hike to Huiji Temple, the island's highest temple atop Foding Mountain. Revel in panoramic views along the way, or opt for a park bus and cable car to save time. Explore Huiji Temple, featuring statues of Guanyin, Buddha, and Bodhisattvas, as well as a pagoda and bell tower. Don't miss the Sky Lamp Stage, a platform where pilgrims light lamps and offer prayers.
Descend the mountain via a hike or cable car, then take a ferry back to Zhu Jia Jian. Your guide and driver will meet you at the port for a 2-hour drive to Hangzhou, the capital of Zhejiang province. Check into your hotel and enjoy some free time to explore the city yourself.
- Day 3: Explore Hangzhou (B, L)West Lake, Feilai Peak, Lingyin Temple, Meijiawu Tea Village, China National Tea Museum
Start your day with a delicious breakfast before embarking on a journey to Hangzhou's most iconic attraction—West Lake. Immerse yourself in its scenic beauty and cultural heritage by taking a leisurely cruise on the lake. Marvel at the picturesque landscapes and explore the Ten Scenic Sites of West Lake, including Fish Viewing at the Flower Pond, Lotus in the Breeze at Crooked Courtyard, and Three Pools Mirroring the Moon. After the cruise, take a stroll or hop on a sightseeing bus to further enjoy the lake and its surroundings.
Continue your exploration at Feilai Peak, a limestone mountain adorned with over 470 Buddhist statues carved into its cliffs and caves. Legend has it that the peak flew over from India, the birthplace of Buddhism. Proceed to the renowned Lingyin Temple, founded in 326 AD by the Indian monk Huili. Inside the temple, discover a magnificent statue of Sakyamuni Buddha seated on a lotus throne.
The journey continues with a drive to Meijiawu Tea Village, a charming settlement with a 600-year history and a major hub for Longjing tea production, also known as Dragon Well tea. Dive into the tea culture, witness the tea-making process, and savor the fresh and fragrant tea. At the end of the day, visit the China National Tea Museum, the country's only museum dedicated to showcasing the history, varieties, culture, and art of tea.
Return to your hotel for a well-deserved rest.
- Day 4: Further Exploration & Departure (B, L)Hefang Street, Hu Qing Yu Tang, Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal, Qiaoxi Conservation Area
Enjoy a relaxed morning with breakfast, followed by a leisurely stroll along Hefang Street, a historical and cultural street dating back to the Southern Song Dynasty. Experience local life, explore shops, restaurants, teahouses, and museums, and indulge in local snacks. Visit Hu Qing Yu Tang, a traditional Chinese pharmacy founded in 1874, doubling as a museum where you can delve into the history, theory, and practice of traditional Chinese medicine.
Embark on a sightseeing cruise along the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal, the world's longest and oldest artificial waterway connecting five major rivers in China. Marvel at the historical buildings, bridges, and picturesque scenery while learning about the canal's rich history and cultural significance.
Continue your journey with a visit to the Qiaoxi Conservation Area, a district highlighting the historical development of industry and commerce in Hangzhou. Explore ancient and modern buildings, including the Gongchen Bridge, Ligeng Hall, and the Chinese Umbrella Museum—the first of its kind in China, showcasing the history, culture, and art of umbrellas.
Head to the China Museum of Knives, Scissors & Swords, featuring the unique culture of Chinese traditional weapons and tools. Explore exhibits of knives, scissors, and swords from different dynasties, regions, and ethnic groups, learning about their history, craftsmanship, and usage. The China Umbrella Museum is connected by a corridor.
Wrap up your day by witnessing a traditional folk art show of painting on oiled paper umbrellas. Observe artists using colorful paints to create beautiful patterns and images on the umbrellas, and try your hand at it if you're inclined.
Finally, be escorted to the airport or train station for your departure.