The capital of Zhejiang Province, 117 miles south of Shanghai at the southern end of the Grand Canal, Hangzhou was one of the sites in China that most impressed Marco Polo, his father and uncle when they visited in 1280. He readily agreed with the popular Chinese saying, “Above there is heaven; below, Hangzhou and Suzhou.” The city remains one of the most popular tourist destinations in China because of it scenic surroundings. Hangzhou recently opened a Silk Museum where you can see the entire production process, from cocoon to finished fabric. Newly developed attractions around Hangzhou provide you with an in-depth view of the colorful life south of the Yangtze River. Just west of the city is West Lake, which is made up of five interconnecting sections surrounded by mountains on three sides and the city on the fourth. A boat tour around West Lake offers visitors delightful stopovers at jewel-like pagodas and teahouses, temples, caves, and hidden springs that are all skillfully connected to create a stunning water and landscape masterpiece.