Zhejiang, China

Position of Zhejiang in China
ProvinceZhè jiāng 'Qiantang River river'
Short name Zhè
Population64.568 million (4.57%) [8th] comparison table
Area102,000 km2 [39,382 mile2] (1.06%) [25th]
GDP100,071 (25.83%) [8th]
NeighborsShanghai Jiangsu Jiangxi Anhui Fujian
Others or just click on the map
Beijing Tianjin Shanghai Hong Kong Xinjiang Tibet Qinghai Gansu Inner Mongolia Heilongjiang Jilin Liaoning Yunnan Sichuan Guangxi Hainan Taiwan Guangdong Guizhou Chongqing Ningxia Shandong Fujian Zhejiang Shaanxi Shanxi Hebei Henan Hunan Hubei Jiangxi Anhui Jiangsu
Zhejiang, canal
Ancient town of Xitang, Zhejiang

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 Qiantang River that joins the Fuchun River and flows through Hangzhou. The Qiantang has another claim to fame, it has the largest tidal bore in the world. The proof that Zhejiang has been inhabited at least 8,000 years ago has been demonstrated with archeological finds unearthed at Kuahuqiao .

Zhejiang, Hangzhou, temple
Statues at Lingyin Temple, Hangzhou, Zhejiang


Hangzhou is an old and interesting city. It stands at the southern end of the Grand Canal from Beijing which was built in the 7th century. Hangzhou served as the capital of China during the Southern Song dynasty when the north was overrun by the Jin dynasty and then the Mongols. Marco Polo wrote "it is without a doubt the finest and most splendid city in the world…" about the city when it was known as Kinsai/Quinsai. 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. It was admired by Marco Polo when he visited China. 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. Emperor Qianlong was a frequent visitor and built a palace on Gushan hill. Much damage then occurred during its occupation in the Taiping Rebellion. The Phoenix Temple Mosque was founded in 1492. On the south side of the lake is Dragon Well Temple and a popular tea is produced here. Hangzhou has a notable Botanical Garden with an impressive collection of species of bamboo; there is also a sequoia tree planted by President Nixon on his historic visit to meet Chairman Mao in 1972.

Hangzhou, Zhejiang, west lake
West Lake, Hangzhou. Copyright Richard Wingfield, October 2017.
modern housing, city, Hangzhou
Hangzhou modern district

Elsewhere 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 also the capital of the short-lived Yue kingdom in the Warring States period. The famous modern writer Lu Xun, was born in the city and it was also the base for the Republican heroine Qiu Jin .

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

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 oranges and tea - another famous Zhejiang export with noted varieties Longjing and Huiming Green Tea .

Shangzhou is the home of the much admired Yueju Opera tradition.

Zhejiang, Putuo Island, coast
Sunset at Putuo island off Zhejiang in the South China Sea

Putuo is a large island sacred to Buddhists but also has many sandy beaches. It has a large statue of Guanyin and many temples but back in 1565 a Dutch raid massacred many of the monks here. The island has a high mountain peak .

Also in Zhejiang is a village at the base of Mount Tiantai notable for its monasteries founded in the 6th century. Dongyang is a town with some notable Ming dynasty houses.

In the mountainous interior notable places include Huangyajian Peak ; and Mount Yandang ; Beishan Hill and Mount Tianmu .

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

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 dynasty unification. Later, in the Three Kingdoms period Sun Quan a native of Fuyuan became the King of Wu. The Wu language is still widely spoken within Zhejiang province.


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 East China Sea. 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.


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. Live Flight information , rank in China 94
See map of location Taizhou Luqiao Airport
Yiwu Airport 义乌机场 YIW IATA / ZSYW ICAO
The airport has 2 terminals and is located 3.7 miles (6.0 kms) from Yiwu. Live Flight information , rank in China 69
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 2 terminals and is located 9.3 miles (15.0 kms) from Ningbo. Live Flight information , Airport information , rank in China 35
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. Live Flight information , Airport information , rank in China 32
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 3 terminals and is located 16.8 miles (27.0 kms) from Hangzhou. Live Flight information , rank in China 11
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See map of location Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport


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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Zhejiang Climate

Climate Chart for Zhejiang
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Major CitiesPopulation
Hangzhou 6,241,971
Huzhou 158,320
Jiaxing 466,101
Luqiao 427,890
Ningbo 3,491,597
Shangyu 770,000
Shaoxing 421,283
Taizhou 612,356
Wenzhou 865,672
Yiwu 1,234,000

City populations for 2012, Province statistics National Bureau of Statistics 2014

See also