Pinghu is a city in Zhejiang.
Pinghu, a city of 485,000, is a historic city in northern Zhejiang. Located a little over an hour's drive from Shanghai, Suzhou and Hangzhou, Pinghu is well worth a stop for a day or two to visit attractions such as Mo's Manor and East Lake. Pinghu also serves as a pleasant alternative destination to spend your time during Chinese national holidays when better-known neighboring cities and attractions are engulfed in touristic chaos.
Pinghu District includes 7 towns and 3 districts, and is on the shore of the East China Sea on the Hangjiahu Plain in north-east Zhejiang Province, with Shanghai to its north and Hangzhou Bay to its south. It has a north Asian tropical monsoon climate with four seasons and an annual average temperature of 16 degrees Celsius. Pinghu is known for its horizontal plain, waterways and good weather, and has long been known as "A land of plenty fish and rice; the homeland of watermelon lamps and a city of profound culture."
- Mo's Manor (莫氏庄园/Mòshì zhuāngyuán), 39 Renmin W Rd, Pinghu Shi, Jiaxing Shi, Zhejiang Sheng, China, 314200. Mo's Manor is the former residence of one of Zhejiang Province's wealthy merchant families. Built in the 1890s at the end of the Qing Dynasty, the residence is composed of dozens of rooms, still furnished with antique furniture. Three generations of the Mo family resided here until the premise was confiscated after the Communists came to power. Behind the manor is a canal where you can stroll between arching bridges and hole-in-the-wall eateries. ¥28.
- Pinghu Museum (平湖博物馆/Pínghú bówùguǎn) (新华南路372号/No. 372 South Xinhua Road), ☎ . The museum collection is housed on the second floor of the museum. While not large, the museum's contents carry historical significance that far outweighs the size of the collection. The main exhibition houses artifacts from the Zhuangqiao (庄桥) ruins located in Pinghu district and date from the Liangzhu Culture, which flourished in what is now northern Zhejiang province from 3400 to 2250 BCE. Among the thousands of artifacts unearthed at Zhuangqiao are hundreds of examples of pottery, stone and bone that bear the etchings of proto-Chinese characters. While the meaning of the images scratched out thousands of years is uncertain, many bear a striking resemblance to later characters. The adjacent hall contains a fine collection of scroll paintings, mostly produced by regional artists, that date from the late Ming Dynasty to the mid-20th century. Free.
- Baoben Pagaoda (报本塔/Bàoběntǎ), Danhu Strreet (当湖街道/Dānghú Jiēdào). First constructed during the Ming Dynasty, Baoben Pagoda is situated in a temple on the shore of East Lake. The five story pagoda underwent renovations during the Qing Dynasty, and unlike a pair of historic pagodas in the historic downtown of Pinghu, survived the iconoclastic destruction of the reign of Mao Zedong. The temple buildings surrounding the pagoda exude a incense fragrance from the stream of steady visitors who come to pray. ¥10 adults; ¥5 elderly.
- East Lake (东湖/Dōnghú). A stroll around East Lake, known to locals as Donghu, is a pleasant way of introducing yourself to the history and culture of Pinghu. During national festivals, locals carve watermelons, the tasty symbol of Pinghu, into intricate carved lanterns, which if you are lucky you'll find hanging from the roofs of the wooden-framed buildings surrounding the lake. A large lotus-shaped building sits on the banks of the lake, while the Baoben Pagoda can been seen jutting out of the temple on the opposite side of the lake. East Lake is a lively attraction during holidays, and you'll see locals in their full regalia on display, but it won't be as absurdly packed as the Bund or West Lake in neighboring Hangzhou or Shanghai.
Pinghu has the biggest clothing output of any city in China. There are a lot of factories that produce clothes and shoes for export.
Watermelon has been grown by Pinghu people since ancient times, and honored as the best watermelon in Southern China for over 800 years. It's delicious and famous for the advantages of Pinghu, such as high content of sugar, juiciness, fine pulp and thin rind. The watermelon enjoys high fame both at home and abroad, and is exported to faraway places including Hong Kong, Macao, and Southeast Asia.
Zaodan, Pinghu egg, is a sort of special egg that is preserved preserved in wine. These eggs are soft, crystal like, mellow, fragrant, nutritious, and tasty, having the function of improving appetite, digestion and blood circulation. These preserved eggs first appeared over 250 years ago during the reign of Emperor Yongzheng of Qing Dynasty, and later were awarded a gold tablet by Emperor Qianlong for being a first-class local tribute to the imperial court.
- Myself Intercontinental (美宿洲际酒店/měisù zhōujì jiǔdiàn), No. 2 West Renmin Street (人民西路2号/rénmínxīlù 2 hào), ☎ . Myself Intercontinental is clean and reasonably affordable. It is situated directly across the street from historic Mo's Manor and it is only a ten-minute walk from East Lake. ¥180 for queen sized room.