AsiaChinaSuzhou

A Visit to Suzhou

Suzhou Travel Blog

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At the railway station
Thank goodness for my Chinese friends who are kind enough to act as a tour guide and arrange a trip to a town called Suzhou, about an hour and ten minutes from Shanghai.  Suzhou is well-known for being a beautiful river town, boasting some of the prettiest ancient gardens.  To get to Suzhou, one can take a bus, a taxi, or the train.  We opted for the train,  as part of the travel package.  The ride was smooth and other than the fact that my poor friends overslept and almost missed the train, everything was great. 

Upon our arrival to Suzhou we toured the Lingering Garden, Garden of Reflection, Humble Administrator's Garden, the Lion Grove Garden and ended the day with Tiger Hill.
the cutest fashion faux-pas ever
  I heard that Garden of the Master of the Nets was quite impressive, but unfortunately it was not part of our tour, and we never did make it over there.  We also took a river boat cruise.  Not quite like Venice (as the Chinese would like to liken) but still charming and nice in its own way.

My favorite is the tower on Tiger Hill.  At the bottom of the tower, Chinese archaeologists discovered what they believe to be the tomb of one of the kings, but due to ancient booby-trap (something about sodium compounds and attempts to open the door will cause the whole place to explode), the tomb remains undisturbed.  The tower is what the locals call the Chinese leaning tower.  It really is very much like the Leaning Tower of Piza.  The grounds of Tiger Hill is the closest thing the region can call a mountain and is quite beautiful.
common rock formations of Chinese gardens
  I wished we had more time to explore on our own.  The terrible thing about guided tours is that you feel like a dog being taken for a walk.  You have no control over where you want to go and how long you want to stay there.  But the positive point is that for lost, non-Chinese speaking American like myself, it's nice to have everything arranged.

The hotel is a 2 star hotel but clean and decent.  For one night and paying less than $8 (sharing with two friends), it was really great.

For dinner we sought out a Sechuan restaurant.  The verdict?  GREASY as all hell.  Flavor was good, but with so much oil, you can eat hardly anything and get full.  But again, very cheap!  We ordered four dishes - enough to feed at least six people and paid $10 total (not per person)

Tomorrow - Tongli!
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At the railway station
At the railway station
the cutest fashion faux-pas ever
the cutest fashion faux-pas ever
common rock formations of Chinese …
common rock formations of Chinese…
At the Lingering Gardens
At the Lingering Gardens
Boat ride on the river
Boat ride on the river
At Tongli
At Tongli
paper artist at work
paper artist at work
Suzhou
photo by: sylviandavid