|Traditional Chinese tiled roofs|
Hangzhou, home of the very scenic West Lake that inspired painters and poets, made the list for a number of reasons. including its booming economy. The city is home to several e0commerce biggies, such as Alibaba. More importantly, it is the first city in China to host a G20 summit. The city is adding new hotels and museums. One, the Folk Art Museum, is built on a former tea plantation. It features thousands of traditionally-styled roof tiles,as shown in the Times' accompanying photograph. Hangzhou ranked 16th on the newspaper's annual list.
Guizhou Province is just now being discovered by tourists, according to the Times, which notes a new high-speed train from Guangzhou reduced travel time from 20 hours to four. But it's a place that I fell in love with when I visited it 20 years ago. A visit to a minority village is a must; the Miao one I went to in the mountains was in the middle of rice harvest. (The photo of rice fields the Times used is stunning.) The village was rustic, set on hillsides. While there, I watched a man bath a water buffalo in a creek, which also served as a source of drinking water for the village. It's No. 44 on the list, but had I been making the choice, I would have put it much higher.