Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Interesting places to visit in suzhou part 3

Coming to the last part of suzhou trip, I will introduce other nice attractions

Pan Gate Scenic Area

Location: No.1 East Street, Canglang District

There are 3 key attractions in Pan gate scenic Area: Ruiguang pagoda built in 247, Wu gate bridge the entrance to the gate and Pan gate. Pan Gate was the key entrance to the wall the protected the ancient Suzhou and famous for its incorporate of both land and water city gates.

Ruiguang pagoda which was earliest Buddhist pagoda in Suzhou

It is the tallest building in this area and it can be seen from everywhere in pan gate scenic area.

Pan gate

Land pathway inside the pan gate

River pathway inside the pan gate

Overview of the buildings around pan gate

Pavilion built on top of rocks

Around the garden

It is really quite a nice place to visit learning the history of suzhou while enjoying the nice scenery around the garden. I recommend spending around 2 to 3 hours here to enjoy it.

Silk museum

Location: 2001 Renmin Rd, Ping Jiang Qu

Silk is one of the key products in Suzhou. In the past, Suzhou always supply silks to ancient royal families and it was the centre of silk trade. Hence, it is important to see how silk is being manufactured.

in the past, silk is manually extracted. With the help of the machinery, it makes work much easier and faster.

Silk blanket

There are quite a lot fake silk products around in the market hence it is better to get from those well known places. There are a few ways to test such as using flame and dissolving method. Silk has a lot benefits such as most hypoallergenic of all fabrics and keeping you warm in winter and cool when the weather is hot. Hence, you can consider getting silk blanket in suzhou where the price is considered cheap compared to other places.

hu qiu

Location: Huqiu, Suzhou

This hill is considered quite small but with a lot historic attractions. One of the key attraction is Yunyan Pagoda and it is nicknamed as "leaning Tower of China". The pagoda leans because the foundation is originally half rock and the other half is on soil. They claimed that tilted angle of the pagoda is more than leaning tower of pisa.

The whole place is surrounded by river where u can take a boat ride.

This rock is really special. If you try throwing a rock and it landed on the rock, your first child would be boy. If it drops off, your first child would be a girl. Can give it a try :)

writing craved on the road : the god of sword

Yunyan Pagoda

Writing by the 3 emperor when they visited the huqiu

Nice scenery around huqiu

It is another interesting place to visit with nice scenery and looking at the leaning tower of china. There are also quite a lot stories about this place which I will skip. I recommended spending at least 2 to 3 hours visiting this place.

With this post, I have come to the end of the suzhou trip. There are much more attractions in suzhou but I only blog about better one. Hope these information help you in planning :)

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Interesting places to visit in suzhou part 2

I will introduce other nice suzhou place to visit other than suzhou gardens.

Ping jiang Road

Location: Ping jiang Road in suzhou

Ping jiang road is parallel with the canel next to it. The buildings along street are well preserved in their original condition along this street. Most of these are converted into inn, shop and cafes.

You also can choose to take a boat ride along the river to enjoy the scenery.

One of the inn along the shantang street which is kept in the original condition. It looks those wu xia xiao shou (chinese martial art novel) where the martial art people stayed in when they are travelling around. They also tried to modernize to attract the young people.

Momi cafe

It is one of the most interesting cafe i visited in Suzhou. I really love this cafe a lot. Let me share with you the reason

It has postcard section where you can buy postcard to write the future you!! They will keep the postcard for you after you wrote it and post to you after a few years.

There are two such cafes located along the street. You also can choose to buy a cup of coffee and relax in the cafe.

Overall, it is quite long stretch of street which u can spend around 1 to 2 hours exploring the whole street and taking nice photos. There are a lot interesting inns and cafes waiting for you to explore. The best timing is to visit in the afternoon/evening as some of shops are closed quite early.

Shantang street

Location: Shantang street in suzhou

Shantang street is parallel with the River next to it. In the past, it is regarded as "the No.1 Ancient Street in China". Just like ping jiang road, the buildings along street are well preserved in their original condition along this street. Most of these are converted into inn, shop and cafes. There are quite a lot souvenir shops along these street which you can get a lot interesting gifts for your friends. It is also a popular filming site for those ancient chinese movie :)

Boat ride to explore shantang street

Shop selling antiques

The person is quite skill as making small figure of your faces :)

Nice drawings on the wall

Crossing the bridge

There are also cafes where you can sit along the river to enjoy the scenery.

One of the inn which you can stay to experience how life is like in the past

You can spend around 2 to 3 hours exploring the whole street and taking nice photos along the street. If you want to get nice and cheap souvenirs for your friends, remember to get over here. There are a lot interesting cafes and shops waiting for you to explore. The best timing is to visit in the morning/afternoon as some of shops are closed quite early.

guan qian jie

Location: quan qian jie in suzhou

It is situated at the downtown of suzhou. There are hundreds over shops, restaurants, bars, stores and clubs over here. It is really a shopping heaven for both guys and girls. Most of the shops have colorful signs and neon lights along the street.

Cinema

KTV singing place. It is really cheap over here. Look at the big ktv room! It cost less than SGD40 for 7 people and comes with fruits :) The sound system is really good also.

My favorite bubble tea store in suzhou. I almost go there daily for my favorite bubble tea which is damn nice!!! Too bad it can't be found in Singapore.

It is really a big shopping place where you can spend 4 to 5 hours and still not able to finish the whole place. I visited this street at least 3 times but still not able to finish exploring it. There are shops selling local food which you can buy back to share with your family and friends. There is also one portion of the street selling all the local food which you can only find in china so remember to give it a try.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Interesting places to visit in suzhou part 1

In suzhou, the garden is recognised as UNESCO World Heritage site. There are over hundreds of garden in suzhou which is used by scholars and government official in the past. Some of them are quite well preserved while some might already being destroyed. There are 4 important elements in suzhou garden: rockery building, water design, horticulture and architecture. There are quite a lot gardens in Suzhou so I would only recommend the two popular ones: Lion Grove Garden and Humble Administrator's Garden (Zhuozheng Yuan)

Lion Grove Garden

Location: 23 Yuanlin Road

The name of this garden is derived from the shape of rocks which resemble lions. There is also large and labyrinthine grotto of taihu rocks where create a maze. It is pretty easy to get lost inside.

The furniture and original design of the hall is also quite well preserved. There are description in every part of the hall to let the tourists understand more about the designs and buildings.

see if u can spot the lion heads in this photo.

more lion heads

This is just a small portion of the whole garden.

It is so big that it can even accommodate a boat but the boat is replaced by stone boat to allow tourists to take photos.

The stone maze

Overall, it is really quite a big place which u can spend 1 to 2 hours taking all the nice photos inside and reading all the description of the places.

Humble Administrator's Garden (Zhuozheng Yuan)

Location:178 Dongbei Street

Entrance area

My first thought when i entered the garden, how is it humble in the first place?? It is really so huge way bigger than the Lion Grove Garden.

pavilion where they have tea

Another pavilion

Another nice scenery

Even the floor tiles are well designed with all kind of patterns.

study room

The windows have unique design too!

Overall, the whole garden is really well designed with rockery building, water design, horticulture and architecture. It is really a beautiful place to take nice photos. U can spend at least 3 to 4 hours just relaxing here and exploring the different parts of the garden.

Keep a lookout for part 2 where I will share about the popular streets in suzhou :)