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One of the best methods of getting around Hangzhou is to rent (or even buy) a bicycle in the local area. Travel on the roads in Hangzhou is best NOT done by car and visitors will find that bicycles are much more efficient than walking for reaching the longer distances throughout the area. However, travelers should be aware that bicycle theft is the most common crime in the area affecting tourists and should take normal safety precautions for preventing this problem. See http://www.tripadvisor.com/Travel-g29... for more information.
Travelers who do not want to bike may want to consider walking. Taxi hire is difficult at best, with just 8000 licensed taxis in a city of around 7,000,000 people. seriously. If you can find one, taxis are usually metered but not from the airport - make sure you discuss the rate with taxi driver before leaving (he'll pretend he doesn't know, but pay 100 maximum to the city centre).. Taxi drivers may be rude and agressive, but you'll be grateful to finally hail a cab (if you're lucky). Walking is often quicker.It is hard to get a taxi, even from a four star hotel. Public transportation is also an option, with buses and mini-buses both being available. Travelers should learn a bit about the bus system in the area so they can get on the right busses. There are standard buses, special air-conditioned buses, and different sized buses for different types of travel. Learn more at http://www.tripadvisor.com/Travel-g29... . Locals treat foreigners well, so if you are stuck for a bus, ask a local. Someone will know which to take. Beware of pickpockets though- Hanghzou has a lot.
Hangzhou just opened its metro. It runs north south through the main city. It is modern and clean. The nearest metro station is a good 25 minute walk from the West lake, though. The best thing for a tourist is to pick a hotel near your planned sightseeing spots (namely, on the West Lake) within walking distance. If you are going for business, pick a hotel near your place of business.