Hangzhou was settled as early as 4,700 years ago, thus giving birth to the auroral Liangzhu Civilization. One of the seven ancient capitals and the key scenic tourism and historical culture cities in China, Hangzhou once was applauded as "the most splendid and luxurious city in the world" by Marco Polo, the Italian traveler in the 13th century.
Located in the south of Yangtse River Delta, on the northern bank of the lower reach of the Qiantang River, Hangzhou is at the southern end of the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal, with its center lying 30.15 degrees north latitude and 120.16 degrees east longitude. In southwest Hangzhou there is a foothill, joined by the undulated Tianmu Mountains, with an altitude generally lower than 500 meters. The northeastern part of the city is flat, with an altitude of 3 to 10 meters.
Hangzhou has 6 urban districts: Shangcheng, Xiacheng, Jianggan, Gongshu, West Lake , Banshan; and 7 suburban counties: Xiaoshan, Fuyang, Yuhang, Tonglu, Lin'an, Jiande, Chun'an, with an area of more than 16 thousand sq.km.
Hangzhou is one of China's big tourist attractions. It has many historical relics and scenic spots, including West Lake, and the scenic area near the Fuchun River and the Xinan River. The special local-made products are silk, Xihu silk umbrellas, color-glazed porcelain, Longjing tea, and white chrysanthemum. Hangzhou is also the hometown of sweet osmanthus, the West Lake is one of the five biggest sweet osmanthus watch places in China. First class flower; sweet osmanthus is one of the ten biggest precious flowers in China. In the golden autumn, the pavilion bund cassia-bark-tree with its flowers blooming ten thousandes yellow spots. The cassia bud falls from the moon, the fragrance flutters out of clouds. The light yellowish sweet osmanthus, has exaggerated Hangzhou with the deep inside story of two big cultures, Wu and Yue, and has exaggerated the happiness of Hangzhou’s person.