Brief information on Three Pools Mirroring the Moon  

Three Pools Mirroring the Moon, shown on the 1 RMB note, is located in the south central portion of Hangzhou’s West Lake. The name also refers to Xiaoying Island, one of the three islands in West Lake, along with Mid-Lake Pavilion (Hu Xin Ting) and Ruan Gong Islet (Ruan Gong Dun). The three pools refer to the three pear-shaped pagodas arranged in a triangle in the water. Erected by the poet and public official Su Shi, their purpose was to indicate that water chestnuts and lotus plants were not allowed to be grown in the area to prevent silt from building up in the lake. Later, during the reign of Emperor Wanli in the Ming Dynasty, the three pagodas were rebuilt. The existing ones were reconstructed in 1699 during the 38th year of Emperor Kangxi’s reign in the Qing Dynasty.

The pagodas are around 2 meters high with hollow interiors. The belly of each pagoda has five circular holes, into which lamps or candles can be placed, especially on mid-autumn nights when the bright moon hangs in the sky. When the circular holes are covered with sheets of thin paper, beams of light will reflect on the water through the holes. The moonlight, lamplight and lake light add radiance and charm to one another.

*You can download the bilingual note to show it to a taxi driver or someone else to find your way to Three Pools Mirroring the Moon if you plan to visit Three Pools Mirroring the Moon and have language problems.



Hours: 8:00-17:00
Admission: CNY 20

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