Walk around West Lake in early morning Hangzhou

Plan your Hangzhou tour? An early morning stroll around West Lake is highly recommended. Why? The early morning view of West lake is fantastic and no tourist hordes get you elbowed.

I start up my first day in the new year by having a stroll around West Lake near my lodging hotel in Hangzhou – Hanting Express ( Xihu Meiyuan Hangzhou).

At 6:00am I stop staying snuggled in my warm bed and get up. After a quick teeth brushing and face washing, I go out on to the quiet street paralleling the lake. It is still dark outside.

Of course, I’m not the only person on the street. A water splashing truck is passing by making the street wet. On the way to the most famous section of the lake front park- Hubin Park ( Lakeshore Park).

I come across several early morning risers. They are young people, look like post 80’s generation, happy and excited. Maybe they are classmates, good friends in real life or friends from the internet on a spontaneous travel. Will 80s generation or 90s generation still use a travel agency to organise their travel? I don’t think so. Actually a travel agency in the terms of “traditional travel agency” has already disappeared.

Today is overcast. The whole West Lake is in the mist. The grey haze makes the lake resembles a paper roll of Chinese brush painting, poetic and spiritual. To my pleasant surprise, four ducks are swimming on the lake, giving vivid life to the quiet lake.

The grey haze makes the lake resembles a paper roll of Chinese brush painting.

The grey haze makes the lake resembles a paper roll of Chinese brush painting
A pavilion with its reflection
Doing Taiji in the early morning by the West Lake
Yellow willow and zigzag brideg around the lake
Hangzhou still has a green world during this cold winter
A moon bridge, willow trees and pavilions, a garden on earth
The path around the lake is clean and pretty.
A group of seniors doing Taiji by the lake
Leifeng Pagoda in a mist

Tip:  Hassle-free Hangzhou Guided Tours

If you don’t want to go the do-it-yourself route and prefer the hassle-free escorted tours, here are some options for Hangzhou Guided Tours:

Hangzhou Tour
Hangzhou 4-Day Tour Package
Hangzhou 3-Day Tour Package
Hangzhou Private Tour
Hangzhou Theme Tour
Hangzhou Side Trips
Hangzhou Car Rental with Driver

Further Readings

Top 10 Attractions in Hangzhou
Top 10 Photography Spots in Hangzhou
Night View of West Lake in Hangzhou
The Best hiking trail in Hangzhou
The best time to visit Hangzhou
Hangzhou East Railway Station
Hangzhou Airport Arrival Hall
How to Visit Feilai Peak Grottoes in Hangzhou
Where to stay in Hangzhou
Hangzhou Bicycle Hire
Wushan Night Market in Hangzhou
Pedestrian Streets in Hangzhou
Hangzhou’s Best Bars & Nightclubs
Best Way to Visit Hangzhou from Shanghai
How to Visit Grand Canal Hangzhou
How to Visit Xiling Seal Engravers’ Society
How to Visit Liuhe Pagoda
Hangzhou Tea Plantation
How to Visit Leifeng Pagoda
How to visit Hupao Spring (Tiger Spring) Hangzhou
How to Visit Yellow Dragon Cave in Hangzhou
The Best Place to View Sunrise over West Lake Hangzhou

Any question, just drop a line.

15 thoughts on “Walk around West Lake in early morning Hangzhou

  1. Hello Irene,

    The Sofitel Hotel Hangzhou is located just next to the West Lake. Walk from your Sofitel Hotel,turn left and cross the Nanshan Road, you will see the Lake!

  2. Hi, what is the distance around the lake and is there a path that goes all the way around? I’ll be heading there this weekend for a month long stay and I will be in the Hyatt Regency and I am looking for some good running routes in the area. Also, what time does it get dark this time of year?

  3. Hello Brian,

    The perimeter of West Lake is 15KM. A very small part of West Lake is not walkable and occupied by some sites. You may have a jogging around the lake early in the morning.

    Just for your reference:

    Today’s Sunrise: 6:58am
    Sunset: 5:06pm

  4. Hello Via,

    The West Lake is about 18 km to the west of Letu 99 Hostel Xiaoshan, a taxi ride costs about RMB 65.

  5. Hi,

    I am staying at Wuyang Holiday Hotel Hangzhou. A few places I would like to go:
    a) How far in terms of km away from West Lake by walking?
    b) Zhejiang University
    c) Watch Impression West Lake
    d) Songcheng Hangzhou

    Who can recommend reliable transport provider in Hangzhou?

  6. Hi Tricia,

    1. West Lake by walking: 2.7 km, 45 minutes
    2. Zhejiang University: 17 km, taxi fare aprrox. 45 yuan
    3. Watch Impression West Lake: 5.8 km, taxi fare about 20 yuan
    4. Songcheng Hangzhou: 11km,taxi fare 30

    Not sure about your criteria for “reliable transport provider”. Basically you can take a taxi, rent a bike or just walk.

    Have a good time in Hangzhou!

  7. Hi,
    I will visit Hangzhou on this coming Nov. 5th. for three days. How far is the Hangzhou Bokai Westlake Hotel Hangzhou to the west lake area? I like to walk around the lake start at 9am. visit 岳王庙,苏小小,武松,秋瑾墓,can I make it within 3 hrs?

    Teh Chong

  8. Hi ewe chong teh,

    It’s a ten-minute walk from your hotel to West Lake. The circuit around West Lake is 15 km, and basically it takes 3-4 hours for a loop walk along the lake.

  9. Hi, Daniel

    Thanks for your useful information.

    1) Which type of transport prefer to visit around Westlake other than Taxi? I mean can stop sightseeing then continue my Westlake visit. What is the charges?

    2) Any transport to 宋城 from Bokai Westlake Hotel ? When back from 宋城 to my hotel is it easy to get transport like van or Taxi ?

    Thank you.


  10. Hi ewe chong teh,

    1. Tour West Lake
    You may walk arond the ciruit of West Lake ( 15km ) or hire a bicycle from the bike booths dotted around the lake.

    2. Trasport from your hotel to Soncheng (宋城)
    You take Bus 308 from the bus stop of South Huansha Road ( 浣纱路南站),about 260 meters from your hotel, then get off at the 18th stop of 宋城。 The whole bus ride takes about one hout and 10 minutes.

  11. Hi,Daniel,

    Is it far away from Hangzhou Bokai Westlake Hotel to the Sangongyuan musical fountain ? Is it safe to walk around Westlake in the evening abount 7 to 8pm.

    Thank you.

  12. Hi ewe chong teh,

    “Sangongyuan” means ” No.3 Park” which refers to one of the six parks along the River Bank Park ( Hubin Park or 湖滨公园). The musical fountain is not very far, about 40 minutes or one hour walk from your hotel. Just walk from your hotel to the lake shore and then stroll along the lake to the north direction.

    See the link below:


    Enjoy yourself!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.