A Peaceful Paradise in Downtown

To escape the stresses of city life there’s no need to jostle in and around scenic spots such as Xitang and Wuzhen, because nestled in a quiet place near the Grand Canal is Xiaohezhijie, a popular Historical Block full of charm and culture.

Xiaohezhijie Historical Block, located in the north of Hangzhou city, is renowned for its traditional residential buildings, and with the shipping facilities along the Grand Canal and Xiao River, it is revered as one of the best protected historical blocks.

The neighborhood of Xiao River was an essential cargo dock in Southern Song Dynasty and by the period of late Ming Dynasty and early Qing Dynasty, the whole block was blooming and soon became the most prosperous commercial center for storing and transferring goods.

As a very busy cargo wharf, it was known for its rice stores, cloth boutiques, restaurants, teahouses and hotels, all of which thrived beside the streets along the Grand Canal and in doing so provided a wealth of materials and customers.

With serene lanes, antic wooden houses, old shop signs, stone quays and Hangzhou dialects, the block is decorated with an air of civil life.

The traits of Xiaohezhijie Block can be seen through the Jiangnan style resident building from the stone bricks to the wooden attics full of the footprints of time. Most of the buildings, with their own characteristics, were built in the late Qing Dynasty and the beginning of the Republic of China era. The whole layout of the block is one river and two streets and the buildings inside are for two uses, the first storey as a store and the second for living.