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Zhejiang Province

Name (zhè jiāng) ['Qiantang River' 'river'] Old Name Chekiang WG
CapitalHangzhou
Population55.03 million (4.00 %) [10th] comparison table
Area102,000 km2 [39,382 mile2] (1.06 %) [25th]
GDP72,967 (16.05 %) [7th]
Position of Zhejiang in China
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Google map of Zhejiang
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Neighbors

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Zhejiang province looks both north to the Yangzi and south-east to the sea. Mountains divide warm coastal Zhejiang from the northern plains. Although one of the smaller provinces by area it has always been prosperous due to high agricultural yields. It is one of only a few provinces named after a specific place, ‘Zhe’ is an old name for the Qiantung River that joins the Fuchun River and flows through Hangzhou. The Qiantung has another claim to fame, it has the largest tidal bore in the world. The proof that Zhejiang has been inhabited for at least 8,000 years ago is shown by archeological finds unearthed at Kuahuqiao .

History of Zhejiang

The Mausoleum of Yu The Great of the ancient Xia dynasty is located at Shaoxing south-east of Hangzhou. After the break-up of the Zhou dynasty, Zhejiang was split between the Wu (north) and Yue (south) kingdoms. It became a vassal state of China in the Qin unification. Later, in the Three Kingdoms period Sun Quan a native of Fuyuan became the King of Wu. The Wu language form of Chinese is still widely spoken within Zhejiang province.

Zhejiang, mountains, view
Zhejiang scenery near Hangzhou including a tea plantation

Hangzhou

Hangzhou is an ancient and interesting city. It stands at the southern end of the Grand Canal from Beijing which was built in the 7th century and even served as the Chinese capital during the Southern Song dynasty when the north was overrun by the Jin dynasty and then the Mongols. More recently the nearby Qinshan nuclear power plant was the first to be built using Chinese technology.

The West Lake at Hangzhou is a famous tourist spot. The lake covers 1,483 acres [6 sq kms] acres and has woods on all sides. It has three islands at its center, one of which (Yingzhou) contains a lake which itself has an island. Elegant causeways run along the banks. The 'Temple of Inspired Seclusion ' reached by the Bai causeway on the north bank has fine views. The Su Causeway is named after the famous Song poet Su Shi who was governor of Hangzhou for a while. On the West bank is the Temple to Yue Fei , an unfairly disgraced General on the Southern Song dynasty. Hangzhou has a notable Botanical Garden with an impressive collection of species of bamboo.

Zhejiang, mountains, view
Mountain trail Zhejiang

Places to visit in Zhejiang

At the Orchid Pavilion Shaoxing there is an outstanding display of calligraphy. However the city of Shaoxing is best known for its rice wine which is produced in vast quantities. Shaoxing was the capital of the short-lived Yue kingdom in the Zhou dynasty. The famous modern writer Lu Xun, was born there and it was also the base for the Republican heroine Qiu Jin .

Ningbo rose to prominence as a sea port in the Tang dynasty and became a treaty port in the 19th century. Chiang Kaishek was brought up nearby; since then it has somewhat lost out to nearby Shanghai. Wenzhou to the South is another ancient sea port that like Ningbo became a treaty port in 1876 mainly for trade in tea - another famous Zhejiang export (noted varieties are Longjing and Huiming Green Tea).

Zhejiang, Ningbo, skyscraper, river
Ningbo city at sunset, Zhejiang

Zhejiang's long rocky coastline and many islands support a large fishing industry. To the north the flat land produces copious crops of rice. The mountains produce a large amount of timber and so has an important paper industry. Notable mountains include Huangyajian Peak ; the island peak of Mount Putuo ; Mount Tiantai and Mount Yandang ; Beishan Hill and Mount Tianmu . Shangzhou is the home of the much respected, traditional Yueju Opera.

Geography

Silk has always been an important industry and Zhejiang produces 30% of China's output. Zhejiang is now a heavily urbanized province with a high population density. It has a warm and rather wet climate, receiving frequent Typhoons in summer from the South China Sea.

Zhejiang, Hangzhou , West Lake, lake, pagoda
Autumn view of West Lake and Pagoda at Hangzhou, Zhejiang

Zhejiang Climate

Temperature axisClimate ChartRainfall axis
Climate chart for Zhejiang
Both Temp Rainfall ° C/mms ° F/ins Key
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Major CitiesPopulation
Hangzhou 2,693,000
Huzhou 343,879
Ningbo 1,292,000
Shaoxing 311,013
Taizhou 1,575,252
Wenzhou 563,379
Yiwu 1,234,000

Airports

Taizhou Luqiao Airport 台州路桥机场 HYN IATA / ZSLQ ICAO
The airport has 1 terminal and is located 12.4 miles (20.0 kms) from Taizhou
See map of location Taizhou Luqiao Airport
Yiwu Airport 义乌机场 YIW IATA / ZSYW ICAO
The airport has 1 terminal and is located 3.7 miles (6.0 kms) from Yiwu
See map of location Yiwu Airport
Ningbo Lishe International Airport 宁波栎社国际机场 NGB IATA / ZSNB ICAO
The airport has 1 terminal and is located 9.3 miles (15.0 kms) from Ningbo
See map of location Ningbo Lishe International Airport
Wenzhou Yongqiang International Airport 温州永强国际机场 WNZ IATA / ZSWZ ICAO
The airport has 2 terminals and is located 14.9 miles (24.0 kms) from Wenzhou
See map of location Wenzhou Yongqiang International Airport
Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport 杭州萧山国际机场 HGH IATA / ZSHC ICAO
The airport has 1 terminal and is located 16.8 miles (27.0 kms) from Hangzhou
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See map of location Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport

Universities

Zhejiang University

Situated in the former capital of Hangzhou, Zhejiang University often shortened to Zheda is one of China's oldest and largest Universities. It was dubbed the 'Cambridge of the East' by Joseph Needham. The courses cover a wide range of topics.. Undergraduates: 22929, Postgraduates: 21945, International students: 2700, GP World ranking 110
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