Eastern China: Places to Explore

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Zhejiang

The province of Zhejiang showcases the region's agricultural prowess and dedication to nature, even as it is one of China's most populous urban regions. The capital city of Hangzhou is famous for West Lake, which is visited by millions of tourists annually. A center of culture and trade, Zhejiang is also one of China's wealthiest provinces. Hangzhou served as one of the country's eight ancient capital cities, after the Song Dynasty rulers fled Jurchen invaders. Throughout history, the city also benefited from its position as the last stop on the Grand Canal, the conduit for supplying goods to the imperial north.

Shaoxing showcases another aspect of Zhejiang life. The small-town flavor of this city-on-canals survives, despite a growing population. Several high-profile figures helped put Shaoxing on the map, including former Premier Zhou Enlai and novelist Lu Xun.

Geographically, the river basin's plains in the north near Shanghai give way to mountains in the south of the province. Besides grain, the province also is recognized in China for its tea, crafts, silk production, and long tradition of sculpture and carving.

Elsewhere in Eastern China

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