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July 19, 2011

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Free trips to West Lake

THE city of Hangzhou will offer free one-day tours to its famous West Lake to 1,000 Shanghai residents, the Hangzhou government announced yesterday at a conference in Shanghai.

The program aims to promote tourism at the West Lake, now a UNESCO World Heritage site. The announcement came at the Hangzhou-Shanghai Economic Cooperation Conference.

Applications will be accepted from today through July 28. Successful applicants can take their tour between July 30 and August 2. Shanghai residents can apply with their ID at all six offices of the Shanghai Tourist Distribution Center. Foreign residents in Shanghai need to bring their passport and Shanghai residence permit or work permit.

"The priorities of Hangzhou-Shanghai cooperation will move to sharing the cultural heritage of the West Lake and transforming as well as upgrading the two economies," said Huang Kunming, Party secretary of the Hangzhou Committee of the Communist Party of China.

The West Lake was named a World Heritage Cultural Landscape by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization last month.

The lake features six natural and cultural elements over a 4,235-hectare area and has influenced garden design in China, Japan and Korea for centuries.


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