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5 Days Charming Jiangsu Tour (Suzhou, Wuxi & Nanjing)

Classical Gardens, Picturesque Water Town, Vast Lake & Profound Culture

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Do you know Jiangnan (江南)? It is a poetic name of the south region of the Yangtze River. Jiangsu is the typical Chinese-painting like destination demonstrating the charm of Jiangnan. Take our 5-day Jiangsu tour covering three popular destinations – Suzhou, Wuxi and Nanjing to free your imagination, relax your body and widen your mind by exploring the classical gardens, water towns, lake scenery, grand Buddha, silk culture as well as Jinling culture.

Everyone has a Jiangnan dream and why not describe your story in this fertile land on your own? Go with China Discovery now!

Highlights of this tour

  • Discover why Suzhou is never far from its resplendent past by strolling its world-famous classical garden, old silk garments factory and canalside ancient town;
  • Appreciate the best cultural and natural highlight of Wuxi - the pearl of Taihu Lake, including the holy site with a huge Buddha Statue and scenic Yuantouzhu full of “greenery” beauty;
  • Step into the old capital of China’s 6 dynasties to unveil the up-and-down history of ancient and modern China as well as take a short glimpse of its past glory.

Basic Trip Information

Price:
from Request
  1. 1. This price is for one person, based on a group of 2 adults sharing one double-bed room in a 4-star hotel and traveling in low seasons;
  2. 2. This price is subject to change according to your traveling season, group size, hotel class, change of activities and possible fluctuation of currency exchange rate.
Travel Route:
Suzhou / Wuxi / Nanjing
Travel Length:
5 Days & 4 Nights
Tour Code:
CD-JST-05
Group Size:
You, your family, friends or group
Experience:
ArchitectureCulturePhotographReligious
Departure:
Any day you want

Full Itinerary Day by day

Day 1 Suzhou (L)

In the early morning of today, you will be picked up from the train station or your hotel lobby by your private tour guide and driver, then set out for Suzhou exploration.

Start with an interesting visit to Humble Administrator’s Garden, one of the Four Greatest Gardens in China as well as the largest and most grandiose one among all Suzhou Gardens. The Classical Gardens of Suzhou was listed as the World Heritage Site in 1997 because the gardens of Suzhou represent the development of Chinese landscape garden design over more than two thousand years, and they are the "most refined form" of garden art, according to UNESCO. Among all the Suzhou Gardens, Humble Administrators’ Garden is the largest one in Suzhou and is considered by some to be the finest garden in all of southern China. It is an artistic combination of buildings, ponds, bridges, paths and trees arranged in a specific manner. Scenic, peaceful and eloquent, everything in the garden tells a story of the pastime. After visiting Humble Administrator’s Garden, move on to the next site - Shantang Ancient Street, a wonderful place for a relaxing walking or leisure cruise on canals. It used to be an important trade and culture center during Ming and Qing Dynasties, and now is famous as the miniature of old Suzhou and the window of Wu culture. Enjoy the ornate water-town style architectures, marvel at the bustling streets and savor at local snacks.

In the afternoon, you will go to explore the most historical site in Suzhou - Tiger Hill. The hill is only 36 meters in height, but covers about 3.5 acres areas with a number of historical sites some of which have history over 2,500 years. The most famous sites include the Yunyan Pagoda which is an over-1000-year-old pagoda with seven stories in height and famously leans much like the Leaning Tower of Pisa, and the Sword Pool where the King of Wu, He Lu, tested and buried his treasured swords about 2500 years ago. Apart from the history, the Tiger Hill is also an amazing place to go for a walk, enjoy natural scenery and experience local custom. Next, transfer from Tiger Hill to Suzhou No.1 Silk Factory for a great entertaining and educational Silk experience. Acting as a living museum of Suzhou Silk, this factory exhibits not only the ancient looms in different dynasties and different weaving techniques, but also the demo of silk manufacturing from cover to cover. You can feast your eyes on each step of the magic process, including silkworms eating mulberries, machinery unraveling cocoons, workers spinning silk and so on. A sea of fancy silk items like scarves, pajamas, bags, cheongsams, shirts, etc. are also on display.

After the sightseeing, be escorted to your hotel in Suzhou downtown.

Elegant Jiangnan Sceneries in Humble Administrator's Garden Suzhou No.1 Silk Factory Suzhou Tiger Hill Shantang Street
Day 2 Suzhou - Zhouzhuang - Suzhou (B, L)

Today after breakfast, you guide and driver will pick you at your hotel to visit the most outstanding museum in Suzhou - Suzhou Museum which is the masterpiece of the world famous architect I. M. Pei who has built Louvre's pyramids in Paris, Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center in Dallas, the Miho Museum in Japan and many extraordinary buildings all over the world. While he was designing the Suzhou Museum, he combined the features of classical Suzhou Gardens with modern and fashionable characteristics. The museum has collected more than 40,000 decent items of ancient Chinese art, ancient Chinese paintings, calligraphy, porcelains, jade wares, handmade crafts, etc., from bronze ages to Ming and Qing Dynasties.

Next, go to the beautiful water town of Zhouzhuang with about 1 hour's driving. Reputed as the No. 1 Water Town in China, Zhouzhuang is one of the “ten most beautiful towns in the globe” and “world charming water town” with a long history of over 1000 years, appealing sightseeing and authentic flavor of regions south of Yangtze River in China. Visiting Zhouzhuang Ancient Town, you can see 14 ancient particular stone bridges built in Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties, multiple courtyards linking together on the winding water, more than 800 residents living by the river, etc. which is exactly the look of serene historic water town in east China. Besides the scenery, the special folk culture in Zhouzhuang will tell you about the real gem of culture in Wu area and the sole of this charming place. Famous attractions include the Double Bridge, Old Drama Stage, Cultural Street, Zhang’s Residence and Shen's Residence, etc.

Optional Activities in Zhouzhuang: 1) riding a boat through the canals to appreciate the fascinating scenery of rivers, bridges and local residences and listen to the old songs of the local sculler. 2) enjoying an authentic Kun Opera Performance.

Drive back to Suzhou.

Suzhou Museum Architecture Zhouzhuang Zhouzhuang Water Town Locals
Day 3 Drive to Wuxi from Suzhou & Wuxi Sightseeing (B, L)

After breakfast, your guide and driver will pick you up at the hotel, and then set out to Wuxi.

Firstly, drive to the northern bank of Taihu Lake to see Lingshan Grand Buddha. The huge statue stands majestically at 88 meters tall, even taller than stone-carved Leshan Giant Buddha in Sichuan and twice the height of famous Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio. Hence, it is recognized as the tallest bronze Buddha in the world. Don’t forget to touch the largest Buddha hand which is said to bring you good fortune and longevity. Apart from the Grand Buddha, Vatican Palace Sacred Site filled with elegant carving and artwork is also a big highlight of the scenic area. You’ll have a full understanding about Buddhism after enjoying Nine Dragons Bathing Shakyamuni and Ode to Auspice in the Palace. Besides, you will visit Five Mudra Mandala in Tibetan style, and enjoy the happy scene of 100 children playing with Maitreya Buddha.

After the spiritual tour, it is time to relax your body and mind with breathtaking natural scenery. There is a saying “The superb view of the Taihu Lake lies in the Turtle Head Peninsula”. Visit Yuantouzhu (Turtle Head Island) to wander through the jagged tranquil path to appreciate the picturesque lakes, islands and hills. Going to Yuantouzhu in spring allows you to savor the beauty of various flowers like blooming cherry, peach blossoms and orchid flowers. Besides, lotus is blooming from June to September. Yuantouzhu is the no.1 place in China to appreciate cherry. The International Cherry Blossom Festival is held from March to April when you can immerse yourself in the sea of flowers. After sightseeing in Yuantouzhu, enjoy the great landscape from a different way – taking a 20-minute roundtrip cruise across Taihu Lake between Yuantouzhu and Fairy Island. If your energy permits, climb up to the top of Luding Hill to have a panoramic vista of the Turtle Head Island and Taihu Lake.

Next, drive to the railway station to catch your train (about 1 hour) to Nanjing. Your local guide will pick you up and accommpany you to your hotel in Nanjing City

Please note:

1. Arrival Ideas: Wuxi has high speed trains well linking with Shanghai (less than 1 hour), Suzhou (10~15 minutes), Nanjing (1 hour) and more destinations. For your convenience, you can travel to Wuxi from Shanghai and Suzhou, etc.

2. Seize the right time to watch Nine Dragons Bathing Shakyamuni which usually 4 times at 10:00; 11:30; 14:45; 16:45. And enjoy Ode to Auspice at 10:35; 11:30; 14:00 and 16:00 (Monday to Friday) or at 10:35; 11:30; 13:00; 14:00; 15:00 and 16:00 (Saturday and Sunday).

Lingshan Grand Buddha Vatican Palace Sacred Site Yuantouzhu in Spring
Day 4 Nanjing Sightseeing (B, L)

After breakfast, you will be accompanied by your tour guide to explore Nanjing’s diverse culture. Nanjing is called as the “City of Emperors” while Purple Mountain (Zijinshan) is the final resting places of the emperors and great leaders, including the founder of Ming Dynasty – Zhu Yuanzhang and Sun Yet-sen, the “Father of Republic China”. Today you are going to unlock their secrets in just one go!

Zhongshan Ling, located at the foot of the Purple Mountain, is the mausoleum park of Sun Yat-sen who was the leader of the Chinese revolution that ended the more than 2000 years feudal monarchy system. It is seen as China's version of the Lincoln Memorial. There are 392 steps to climb to the actual mausoleum, but you will be accompanied along by magnificent buildings and elegant landscapes. Pay your respect to Sun Yat-sen at his resting place, also enjoy the mesmerizing panoramic view of Nanjing city and surrounding.

Xiao Ling, located near to Zhongshan Ling, is the tomb of Zhu Yuanzhang who united China and established the mighty Ming Dynasty. Covering over 1,700,000 square meters, it is rather a vast complex of palaces, temples and greenery than a simple tomb, which took 25 years’ efforts of over 100,000 workers. As an honorable UNESCO World Heritage Site, Xiao Ling magnificent value of architecture and royal mausoleum culture. All the later mausoleums of both Ming and Qing Dynasties were built by the layout and style of Xiao Ling. You will walk at leisure to the mausoleum along the Sacred Road which is guarded by giant stone sculptures of various animals and generals from ancient time, making your visit calming and pleasant.

After the impressive mausoleums visiting, drive heading to the Confucius Temple (Fuzimiao). Built in Song Dynasty about 1000 years ago, the temple is one of the most important temples to worship the siege Confucius. For foreign visitors, it is a unique place where you can figure out how Chinese society, education system, government system was built Confucius’ thoughts, and how Confucianism have impacted relationship between people and basic guidance on how your Chinese think about our world. It is truly an inspiration.

Later, you will be taken to Qinhuai River area to explore the local lifestyle. The river runs through the city of Nanjing, remembering the history of Nanjing in many history books and poems. Today, it is a great place to wander around. Red lanterns, shops, eateries, souvenirs sellers cluster all round in the pedestrian street. At night the whole area is lit up with colorful lights thus creating a very impressive night scenario. It is very popular to take a colorfully decorated boat to ride on this ancient river, which will be a memorable experience.

Lastly, you will be escorted back to your hotel. The rest time is free for you to relax and take rest. You can also be dropped off at Qinhuai River area if you want to stay more time at the area for dinner and relaxing.

Zhongshan Ling - the Mausoleum of Dr. Sun Yat-sen Qinhuai River - a great place to wander around Confucius Temple (Fuzi Miao) - an inspiring place about Chinese culture Xiao Ling - an honorable UNESCO World Heritage Site
Day 5 Nanjing & Nanjing Departure (B)

After breakfast, go for enjoy a leisure stroll on the Ancient City Wall (Xuanwumen Section) which is the longest, largest, and best-preserved ancient city wall in the world. It was built about 650 years ago, with about 25 km remaining well. An interesting fact is many of the bricks in the wall have signatures of the artisans who originally made the brick, which is believed to be helpful to guarantee the quality of the walls. Walking on the top of the wall gives to you the nice highlight of ancient time and modern Nanjing.

After the impressive mausoleums visiting, drive heading to Niushoushan Forest Park, a hidden treasure of Nanjing, a place where both Buddhists and regular tourists can enjoy. After entering the park, you will ride a sightseeing bus to the Usnisa Palace at the top to start sightseeing. The palace is a modern building that is 9 storeys and built into an iron quarry, with fabulous design. It was built to collectively exhibits and preserves the treasure of the Buddhist world - the world's only parietal relic of Buddha. One has to see it to believe it. You will also take your time to visit the iconic Foding Temple and Foding Pagoda, and enjoy some leisure walking in the park.

The rest time is free until your guide and driver transfer you to catch your flight/train to the next destination or home. Tour ends.

Nanjing Ancient City Wall - best-preserved ancient city wall in the world Niushoushan - a place where both Buddhists and regular tourists can enjoy

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