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Summer Lotus at West Lake
By admin on 2015-02-04

Thick carpets of lotus flowers complemented by their green leaves unfold on the surface water of West Lake under the striking blue sky.
The West Lake scenic area of eastern China's Hangzhou city is among the nation's best tourism sites to view lotus flowers, together with Daming Lake in Jinan city, Shandong province, and the exquisite gardens in Suzhou city, Jiangsu province. The austere beauty of the lotus flower has been depicted in numerous Chinese poems and landscape paintings. West Lake always buzzes with tourists and citizens each year between June and September when the lotus flowers planted in the lake are in full bloom.

The picturesque view has lured many photography fans.

West Lake illuminated at night by translucent artificial lights.

A stone gate stands at the entrance of the curved street.

Foreword to this feature series on cultural and historical roads and communities:

Time-honored street communities often hold the cherished memories of a city. They reflect the city's historical roots and the traditional ways of life of its people. As modern cities develop, large numbers of valuable places are either abandoned or demolished. In an effort to preserve and emphasize the significance of what remains, CRI is publishing a series of features on China's cultural and historical streets.

The Road of History-- The Pit Street in Guizhou

Located in a small township in China's Guizhou province, Pit Street, or Pingqiao Street is named after a peculiar architectural feature - a road with a curved shape, where the center of the road is lower than the edges, where the bricks curve upward.

The street is known for its well preserved stores and family residences, most of which date back to the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties.

In its heyday, the township where Pit Street was located lured large numbers of businessmen from across the country for its immense quantities of timber. As the businessmen gradually settled down, they built large and lavishly decorated family residences as well as a number of fascinating stores which now have become the major attractions in the area.

The street is also the economical and cultural hub of the town. Villagers from nearby villages, who are mostly comprised of people from the Dong ethic minorities, would come to the many shops on Pit Street to do their daily shopping. On festive occasions, the street is where the traditional celebrations featuring Dong ethnic folk songs and dances take place.

Pit Street was listed as one of China's historical and cultural roads in 2011 for its rich historical heritage and the presence of the unique Dong ethnic culture.

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