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The charming village of Hongcun, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, was built from the 11C onwards in the “shape of a buffalo” around the Moon Lake, a delightful circular stretch of water overlooked by small houses of various styles. Canals link it with the Southern Lake and with various rivers, forming a vast network of water which irrigates the surrounding tranquil countryside, which is both fertile and wooded. Houses built by the wealthy merchants of old add an occasional touch of urbanity to this rural scene.

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