Tag: plum blossoms

tour – spring festival in blossoming hangzhou

Come with China Tea Leaves for a classic Chinese New Year in 🌸🍃🍵 Hangzhou!

Hangzhou has always been one of our favorite places in China for its graceful beauty, and was one of the first inspirations for the concept of China Tea Leaves travel. On this trip, you can seek out the plum blossoms in the bamboo forest, taste the best green tea in China, see heaven on earth around the fringes of  West Lake, and take a day trip to Wuzhen, a classic water town known as the Venice of the East.

This trip is set in the middle of the Spring Festival vacation. Our tour takes place on February 17-20, the 3rd to 6th days of the national vacation, already past the biggest rush, and you can relax and follow my expertise for beating the crowds. Does your company or school have a longer vacation? Arrive early or stay longer in Hangzhou, or nearby Shanghai, Suzhou, etc. This tour is designed to be flexible and fit into your own personal plan.

Prices listed do not include airfare or trains (there are many of both available from Shenzhen and other major cities). Book your own, or ask me to help book for a fee. Coming from a different city? No problem! Just talk to me.

Note about Spring Festival: Trains on February 16 will start publicly booking from January 18. And millions of people across China will starting booking on this date. Be ready to book your own tickets as soon as possible, or contact me for help booking – before January 16 please for best results. Also, hotels will be booking fast, so make sure you contact me as soon as possible to reserve your preferred hotel.

February 16 Arrive by flight or train in the evening, check into your hotel

February 17 Personal tour of the quiet parts of West Lake

February 18 Taste green tea in the best region in all of China – Longjing village

February 19 Day trip to Wuzhen, Venice of the East

February 20 Stroll amongst the plum blossoms in Hangzhou Botanical Gardens
(you could choose to depart in the evening on Feb 20)

February 21 Check out of the hotel and depart by flight or train in the morning

Price: Adult: 4980RMB (double occupancy), Kids 1.2m+ 2800RMB

Upgrade to West Lake Shangri-La (5 stars): Add 1000RMB
Depart on February 20: ask me about deduction

ABNet or SWIC member: Take 300RMB off! (150 off kids price)

Price includes:
Local transportation around Hangzhou and Wuzhen
5 night (double occupancy) at Hangzhou Tea Boutique Hotel West Lake (5 stars) in Qingzhiwu, a trendy cafe and loft street
Entrance tickets
Travel insurance
and full service guide by Greta of China Tea Leaves.

Payment: Cash, WeChat, or Alipay. Deposit of 2000RMB per person to be made by January 26. Balance must be paid in full by February 13.
contact Greta below for other payment options

Minimum 6 people, maximum 12

How to Book:

Contact Greta on WeChat (Scan QR code)

If adding me for the first time, be sure to mention Trips or Hangzhou in your introduction.

or contact me by email (chinatealeaves @ yahoo.com)


a riot of blossoms

meihua yuan

In China these days, there is much talk of the flowers of the season. Pale pink cherry blossoms are opening in pockets of central China and Yunnan, actually the ancient place of origin of the esteemed bloom. But eastern China is maybe the best for spring flower viewing, especially in the jiangnan (江南) region, south of the Yangtze River.

apple blossom

Du Mu wrote over a thousand years ago:



Jiangnan Spring

A thousand miles of orioles crying, red among the green
Along the village shore and city wall, wine banners wave in the breeze
Four hundred and eighty temples of the southern court
How many towers hidden in the mist and rain

meihua pavilion

We’ve just returned from Qingming Festival in Hangzhou, part of the jiangnan region, where we saw so many of these ancient images painted before us. Peach blossoms in fiery pink, the pale plum blossom in early spring, the wild orchid in secret watery groves. Delicate young shades of spring green cascade through the landscape, in a way we miss in Shenzhen where it’s green all year.

orchid hz

Qingming is a traditional time to behold springtime flowers, but the jiangnan will be in bloom through April and May, so a trip to one of the area’s cities will be especially vibrant during this season. The May 1 holiday is one upcoming three day weekend, which could make a lovely time to visit this region. Hangzhou, the former capital Nanjing, Suzhou, and Yangzhou will all hold classical scenes as in the poems, and be dressed in beautiful blooms throughout these months. Here’s a great guide to flower viewing in Hangzhou.