As the provincial capital of Zhejiang Province, Hangzhou enjoys a high reputation, both at home and overseas. As the saying goes, “Up above there is Paradise, down here there are Suzhou and Hangzhou”.
It is rated as a national historical and cultural city with a long and fascinating history. Located in the northeast part of Zhejiang Province, Hangzhou City has picturesque scenery and beautiful landscapes. Listed below is some information on the public transportation available in Hangzhou, so as to ensure you have an efficient, comfortable, and convenient traveling experience.
Buses in Hangzhou are divided into three main types, namely ordinary buses, air-conditioned buses with the letter ‘K’ added before the bus number, and minibuses. Nowadays, the one-entrance ticket system has been adopted, according to which a ticket for an ordinary bus costs 1 to 1.50 yuan, 2 to 3 yuan for an air-conditioned bus, and 3 to 4 yuan for the BRT (Bus Rapid Transit).
All the ticket prices are noticeably printed on the bus stop boards for your convenience. In addition to the main bus lines, special tourism lines, buses around West Lake, and night tour lines are also available.
In Hangzhou, buses with the letter ‘Y’ added before the bus number are all for tourism lines, such as buses Y2 to Y9. These are very convenient as they cover almost all the scenic spots near West Lake.
We also recommend that you take buses 51 and 52 on the loop lines so that you can enjoy the beautiful landscape of the lake and hills as well as bustling city scenes. If you want to visit tourist attractions around West Lake, double-decker sightseeing buses may be a good option for you with acceptable ticket prices.
There are five BRT lines, four BRT interval lines, and six BRT branch lines in Hangzhou.
Although there has not been a BRT line stopping via West Lake yet, you can take the B1 line and get off at the final stop, Yellow Dragon Station, which is the nearest one to West Lake. The Yellow Dragon Cave scenic spots are nearby and are only one hour’s walk to the northern and western parts of West Lake.
- Buses in Hangzhou City, including air-conditioned buses, are almost all self-service ones with automatic systems reporting on the bus stations. Please be ready to pay the charges when you get on.
- You will enjoy a half-price discount during March, April, October, and December each year.
- Sometimes buses do not stop at every station between the start station and the final station on a bus line. It should be mentioned that buses will not stop at those stations listed under a line on the station board. Please be aware of that.
- The bus stop boards are all LED screens, and each bus is installed with a GPS so that you know how far is left to arrive at your destination and the arrival time.
- You can buy an IC bus card. The card costs 25 yuan and the money you charge to your card should be over 50 yuan. By using the card, you can enjoy 9% off the fare.
- During the Spring Festival, many bus lines will undergo some adjustments. Please check before you go out.
Hangzhou has been successfully served by underground railways for years. Three lines have already been opened there, namely Line 1, Line 2, and Line 4.
This line goes via many large passenger distribution centers, such as Wulin Square, main commercial districts, tourism business centers, Yuhang Railway Station, the South Passenger Transport Station, and so on.
The operating time is from 6:30am to 10:30pm. The starting fare is 2 yuan per capita and the highest price is 8 yuan per capita, according to the per-mile pricing system.
In Hangzhou, taxis fall into two types, namely the ordinary taxi (blue) and the electric taxi (yellow). The starting taxi fare is 11 yuan for the first 3 kilometers. You should negotiate the price with the driver in advance.
It may be a little difficult to hail a taxi, especially between 5pm and 6pm, because some drivers may refuse to take passengers during their shift change. Therefore, it may be better to take a bus.
Public bicycles are very common vehicles in Hangzhou. Visiting West Lake or the streets and lanes there by bike is rather pleasant, and a comfortable experience.
The public bicycles are provided by the government. No matter which service point you rent a bicycle from, you can return it to another one. There are a large number of these public bicycles available, especially in the West Lake scenic area and other major tourist attractions.
Please take your ID card when you register for one. The bicycle is free for the first hour, one yuan per hour if the time exceeds one hour, 2 yuan per hour if the time exceeds 2 to 3 hours, and 3 yuan per hour if the time exceeds 3 hours.
The rental time
is 6am to 9pm for most of the year, and from 6:30am to 8:30pm during winter.
The land and water transportation hubs in Hangzhou are divided into two lanes, namely Beijing–Hangzhou Grand Canal and the Qiantang River, which are usually dredged in summer or during the peak tourist season.
Water buses and recreational travel routes are also available on the intracity canals and rivers in Hangzhou. There are seven such bus lines, which go via four docks. The operating time is from 7am to 6pm. The water buses leave every half an hour.
It should be mentioned that a bus ticket is 3 yuan per person between 7am and 8am and between 4:30pm and 6pm. The fare is 5 yuan per person for the rest of the time. You can use the public transportation card on some parts of the lanes.