This is the first part of 语文四年级上册 (a grade-4 Chinese textbook), and the transcript is here 观潮 (guāncháo = tide watching).
I translate this to:
Qiantang River's big lake, since ancient times has been known as Earthly wonder.
The lunar calendar's 8-th month 18-th day is the annual tide-watching. This day in the morning, we come to Haining city's Yanguan district; reportedly, here is tide-watching's best place. We, along with a tide-watching group, climb over the large seawall [海塘大堤]. Wide Qiantang River reclines [横卧] in front of our eyes. The surface of the river is tranquil, incrementally moving east and wider [越往东越宽]; in the after-rain sunshine, there is an enveloping layer of drizzly mist. In Zhenhai distict and Guta district, Zhongshan pavilion and tide-watching terraces tower on the river bank. In the distance, a few small mountains in the mist are faintly discernible. The river's tide has not yet come, and on the large seawall for a long time there's been a vast crowd. Everyone [昂首东望 (?)], waiting, anticipating.
I encounter a few issues here:
- I'm not sure how to interpret 海塘大堤 (hǎitáng dàdī): we have both 海塘 (seawall) and 大堤 (levee) which seem redundant. Could 海塘 be the name of the 大堤?
- 横卧 (héngwò) translates to "to recline", but it seems strange that a river "reclines". This doesn't make sense to me.
- I'm not sure if I'm interpreting 越往东越宽 correctly. I think it means the river (or lake) is incrementally moving eastwards and getting wider. Google Translate gives "the more eastward the wider", which is not so clear to me.
- I unclear about 昂首东望 (ángshǒu dōng wàng): 昂首 means to raise one's head, but 东 means "East" and 望 means "to hope". Google Translate gives "looking east", which is probably accurate.
Question: How do I resolve issues with my translation of a 观潮?