Like a shining pearl inlaid in this golden tour line “Hangzhou-Qian Dao Hu (Thousand Islets Lake)-Huang Shan (Yellow Mountain),” Qian Dao Hu (Thousand Islets Lake), situated in Chun’an county 160 km (100 miles) west of Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, is one of forty-four state-level scenic spots and presently China’s biggest national park. Every year, millions of visitors both home and abroad will come here to appreciate the unique scenery. With further development in transportation, Qian Dao Hu is about to become one of the best tourist attractions in the world.
Qian Dao Hu (Thousand Islets Lake) is a young lake. She is an artificial lake formed as the result of being a reservoir for constructing Xin’an River Waterpower Plant in 1959.
Qian Dao Hu (Thousand Islets Lake) is a crystal pure lake. Covering an area of (143, 321 acres), it has a storage capacity of 17.8 billion cubic meters. The average depth of water is 34 meters (112 feet) and the visibility in the water can be reached to 7-9 meters (23-30 feet). According to the national water evaluation standard, the water, which can be drunk directly from the lake, is top ranking.
Qian Dao Hu (Thousand Islets Lake) is a beautiful lake. It has a total of 1,078 islets, each with its own formation. That is why the lake is named Qian Dao Hu (Thousand Islets Lake). Qian Dao Hu is not only grand like Taihu Lake in Wuxi, Jiangsu Province, but also exquisite like West Lake in Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province. Qian Dao Hu is beautifully featured with verdant hills, elegant water, queer caves, and odd stones. In spring, flowers spring up everywhere, dressing the lake in many vibrant colors. In summer, visitors like boating on the pure green lake and are reluctant to leave. In autumn, visitors will be attracted by the hills in heavy red, for leaves here turn red in autumn. Even in winter, although blanketed with snow, Qian Dao Hu warmly welcomes visitors from all over the world. The snow scenery of Qian Dao Hu is so exquisite that poetry can hardly capture it. Truly, Qian Dao Hu is beautiful and inviting in all seasons.
Qian Dao Hu (Thousand Islets Lake) is a pleasant lake. In recent years, Qian Dao Hu has developed over twenty travel sites, which may be divided into four types: nature, wild life, historic sites, and entertainment. In the middle of the lake, an islet in the shape of a plant blossom is famed for its beautiful natural scenery and perfect environment and also regarded as the best place to view the surrounding landscape. Here, one can also see many wild animals such as swans, mandarin ducks, mandarins, and bitterns. Those who have rich interest in wild animals can continue to appreciate the animal show or go to feed ostriches in Ostrich Islet and take photos with them, even ride on an ostrich’s back if they’re brave enough. In addition, various traditional activities are offered there. Different seasons have different activities: Muju (local drama) in the spring, Dragon Lantern show in the fall, Tiao Zhu Ma (local dancing party) in the summer may be visitors’ favorites.
Qian Dao Hu is a lake of historical interest. It was the home several great people. The most famous ones were Chen Shuozhen – the first Empress in the Tang Dynasty (618-907), Fang La – a famous peasant revolutionary in the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127), and Sun Quan – the King of Wu during the Three Kingdoms Period (220-265 BC). Some of their offspring still live there. One may drop a visit in their houses and listen to the moving stories of their ancestors.
Qian Dao Hu (Thousand Islets Lake) is a lake possessing great wealth. Qian Dao Hu teems with tea, mulberry, timber, and bamboo. There are 1,786 species of plants and 87 species of freshwater fish in all. Qian Dao Hu is embraced all around by mountain ranges. Here, visitors can hear birds singing, smell the fragrance of flowers, and taste fresh fruit when it is in season. Besides, there are various kinds of local products, such as non-core persimmon, sweet date, hickory nut, and sun-dried fish.
Qian Dao Hu (Thousand Islets Lake) is like a dream, an enchanting dream. Matching with the ocean-blue sky, snow-white cloud, and golden bright sunlight, Qian Dao Hu with its pure water is so charming that we cannot exactly describe the special beauty by our language. We see many colors here; the most attractive is green. Each islet here is vibrant, each hill here is emerald, and each mountain here is verdant. Green here is uniquely pure, small wonder that Qian Dao Hu is famed as a green wonderland. Green is a symbol of life; seeing the unique green here, everyone will cherish his life.
Leave out of the crowded and noisy city and throw away all the mundane affairs; you’d better wander around Qian Dao Hu (Thousand Islets Lake). From time to time you will think that you were walking in Xanadu.