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Suzhou’s Top Five Must-See Sites

Given China’s rapid economic growth and urban expansion, there are few opportunities to experience traditional China, yet Suzhou presents that possibility. With its narrow streets and winding waterways, this city truly lives up to its nickname as “Venice of China.” At the heart of the city is the old town district, the layout of which has remained unchanged over 2,500 years.

Navigate The Grand Canal: Like the Great Wall, Suzhou’s Grand Canal is noted as one of the most magnificent and wondrous constructions in ancient China, offering a profound look into China’s fascinating, historical past. The Grand Canal, approximately 1,200 miles in length, is the longest man-made waterway in China. With 27 sections and 58 historical sites, it was successfully inscribed onto the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2014.

Live The Local Life Of A Water Town: The ancient water town of Tongli is located on the bank of Taihu Lake and east of the ancient Grand Canal. As one of the six famous water towns, it is divided into seven parts by 15 brooks and by 47 bridges. The area contains hundreds of gardens, temples, mansions, and the former residences of dignitaries built from 1271 to 1911 during the Ming and Qing dynasties.

Explore The Old & New in Suzhou: Suzhou is home to more than 730 cultural relics under government protection. More than 60 classical gardens are well preserved, and nine of them are listed as UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Sites. The protected landscape of small bridges, flowing water, winding canals, narrow streets, white walls, cultural relics, and classical gardens make it a unique city.

Tour Iconic Chinese Landmarks: One of the 10 great temples in China is the Hanshan Temple, which is located just outside the city center of Suzhou. The scents of street food and the clamor of the city are replaced by fragrant incense and a respectful hush inside the yellow Temple walls, which is broken only by the sounds of the famous chiming bell. Visitors can immerse themselves in the ancient history of the Liang and Tang dynasties as they explore the buildings, climb the pagoda and read the ancient inscriptions.

Be One With Nature with the Famous Suzhou Gardens: The famed Humble Administrator’s Garden is considered to be one of the best representations of China’s classic landscape architecture. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the garden is the largest in Suzhou.