I Can Take You There!
Address: Entire NW part of Yangzhou, south entrance near arched stone Hongqiao bridge
扬州, 瘦西湖南门, 大虹桥路28号
Phone number: +86 (0)514 8733 0189, 8735 7803
Price: 80 yuan (includes Potted Plant Garden)
Slender West Lake is the premier attraction in Yangzhou. The park, lined with willow trees, picturesque pagodas, and loads of history has enough to keep a visitor busy for the entire day. During spring the park is an expansive wonderland of flowers and budding trees. There are few enclosed city parks in China as impressive as this, making Slender West Lake a must visit.
Five Pavilion Bridge, the unofficial symbol of Yangzhou, is found here connecting the slender lake’s shores. The bridge was constructed nearly five hundred years ago. Always bustling with activity, the bridge offers excellent elevated views of the lake. It’s also a reliable place to catch a pleasant breeze to help visitors cool down a bit on a hot summer day.
Boat rides are also a fun way to explore the lake. They can be hired quite easily (around 10 yuan per person), or rented on your own for more freedom. Within the park there is a Buddhist nunnery and a large white, somewhat out of place, Tibetan Chorta. Countless side paths, bridges, pavilions, calligraphy halls, and the historic Gong He Chun Restaurant, specializing in dumplings, pot stickers, and noodles fill up the rest of the park grounds. Following the lake north leads all the way to Da Ming Temple and Guan Yin Monastery.
Just over the stone bridge from the park’s south gate is the Yangzhou Potted Plant (Bonsai) Garden, which is another beautiful place to wander. This park is on an island in Willow Lake and maintains hundreds of very old, and actually quite interesting potted plants. The ticket to Slender West Lake also includes admission to this park. The street opposite the entrance naturally has numerous souvenir stores and restaurants.
Combo Ticket: For 110 yuan you can get a combo ticket which includes the entrance fees to Slender West Lake, a small museum within the Slender West Lake scenic area, Ge Yuan and He Yuan. It also includes a twenty minute ferry ride down The Grand Canal. The ticket can be purchased at the south entrance (南门) but may not be available at other entrances.
How to Get There:
Bus numbers 4, 5, 6, and 16 all go to Slender West Lake. Alternatively, you can take a pleasant walk northwest from the city center to reach the park. The park covers the entire NW part of Yangzhou. The south entrance is near the arched stone Hongqiao bridge.