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5 Days Essence of Shanghai Suzhou Tour with Zhouzhuang Water Town

Time Travel from Modern Shanghai back to Old Suzhou

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For the first-timers, it's hard to believe that you could find so many charming places of old times to explore around China's most modern metropolis Shanghai. During this 5 days private tour, you will travel Shanghai with neighboring Suzhou, which is an interesting "time-travel" to enjoy the contrasts and diverse experiences. You'll enjoy the comfort and convenience that the modern world has brought us, and have your eyes wide open for the most breathtaking skyscraper, the most thriving shopping street and the largest-scaled Western old buildings in Shanghai. Meanwhile, you'll also experience the classic Chinese garden, the pretty riverside residences, well-preserved traditional lifestyle and China's No.1 Water Town in Suzhou.

Highlights of this tour

  • Visual feast of architectures at the Bund, with elegant old mansions of different styles facing dominating skyscrapers and shopping malls including some of the world's tallest buildings;
  • Visit the more than 1000 years old Zhouzhuang Water Town to find out what is China's old town and living style like, and ride a boat through the canals (optional) if you like;
  • Special opportunity to visit a local Chinese Silk factory in Suzhou and observe the detailed process of silk making.

Basic Trip Information

Price:
from
  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:
Shanghai / Suzhou / Zhouzhuang / Shanghai
Travel Length:
5 Days and 4 Nights
Tour Code:
CD-SSZT-05
Group Size:
You, your family, friends or group
Experience:
ArchitectureCulture
Departure:
Any day you want

Full Itinerary Day by day

Day 1 Shanghai Arrival

Ni Hao! Welcome to Shanghai, the biggest metropolis in China!

Upon arrival, you will be met by a local tour guide at the arrival hall of the airport/train station/port and escorted to check in your hotel in downtown by a private comfortable vehicle. The rest of today is on your own to relax. If you want to explore nearby, feel free to get some practical suggestions from your tour guide.

Optional Activity - Attend an entertaining Acrobatic Show, including breathtaking “balls of death” acts, chair balancing, hula hoops, juggling of benches, walking in the air, and other breathtaking performances (usually performed during 19:30~21:00).

Arrival Ideas: At present, there are many international and many domestic flights to and from Shanghai. Also, you can arrive in Shanghai city by taking a high speed train from Beijing (5-6hrs), Xian (6-7hrs), Hangzhou (1hrs), Suzhou (30mins), Huangshan (4hrs), and so on.

Shanghai Night
Day 2 Shanghai (B, L)

After breakfast, you will visit Shanghai Museum, one of the Four Best Museums in China. There are over one billion cultural relics related to Chinese ancient history and art are exhibited inside, including precious bronzes, paintings, calligraphy, ceramics, jade, sculptures, traditional furniture, seals and old coins from more than 5,000 years ago to the Qing Dynasty. Da Ke Ding(bronze food vessel in over 3000 years ago), Bianzhong of Marquis Su of Jin (ancient musical instruments) are the top treasures to visit. An Audio Explanation Device will help you better learn the facts and knowledge of the exhibitions.

Next, drive to Tianzifang, a unique popular tourist enclave remolded from a traditional residential block in old town of Shanghai. Intertwined narrow alleys are filled with small creative shops selling lovely souvenirs and plenty of cafés, bars and restaurants. It’s great fun to ramble through the maze-like area to appreciate the well-preserved traditional Shanghainese Shikumen (Stone Warehouse Gate) houses, see interesting novel art and handicrafts, savor a lazy open-air coffee time and try some local street food and feel the original Shanghai life vibe.

Next, visit the Shanghai World Financial Center (SWFC), “the Eye of Shanghai”, one of the most incredible skyscrapers in Lujiazui. With a height of 492 meters (1,614 ft), the tower is the second tallest building after the nearby Shanghai Tower (632 meter/2,073 ft). Ascend up to the 474 meter-high 100th floor observation deck, try a thrilling skywalk on the transparent glass walkway and enjoy a breathtaking bird’s eye view of the entire city, including the Bund, neighboring Shanghai Tower, Jinmao Tower and many surrounding attractions. Feel Shanghai lying under your feet and blue sky hanging above your head.

Later, get to Nanjing Road, Shanghai’s earliest commercial street and one of the most popular current landmarks. Lots of big name brands, restaurants, cafés, souvenir shops and towering buildings can be seen when you stroll around this busy pedestrian mall. Continue your walk to the Bund, the No. 1 attraction in Shanghai. Stretching along the west bank of the Huangpu River, this 1.5km-long road was a simple towpath for transporting good but developed to the early “East Wall Street” in late 19th century, as a perfect blend of the East meeting the West. The Bund mainly features 52 various European-style architectures praised to the Exhibition of World’s Architecture. Make a pleasant walk to see those western classical and modern style buildings and amazing skyscrapers of Lujiazui across the river.

After the tour, drive back to your hotel. (If you want to spend free time at the Bund, Nanjing Road or somewhere else please let your tour guide know.)

Shanghai Skyline Exquiste International Buildings at The Bund 474 M High Glass Walkway in World Financial Center Spend  Leisure Time at the Mazy Lanes of Tianzifang
Day 3 Shanghai - Suzhou (B, L)

In the early morning of today, you will be picked up from your hotel to take a morning high speed bullet train to Suzhou(about 30mins).

After arrival, start today's trip with an interesting visit to Lingering Garden, one of the Four Greatest Gardens in China as well as the perfect representative of traditional Suzhou Gardens. The Lingering Garden has synthesized almost all the classic features of Suzhou gardens. It is composed of residential areas, shrines, family temple and garden, making fully use of the changings between big and small, bend and straight, bright and dark, tall and low, tight and disperse, with the surrounding landscapes, such as trees, flowers, lake, sky, as backgrounds to create an ingenious system of space. After visiting Lingering Garden, move on to next site - Shantang Ancient Street, a wonderful place for a relaxing walking. 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 site is the Yunyan Pagoda which is an over-1000-year-old pagoda with seven stories in height and famously leans much the Leaning Tower of Pisa. 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 to Suzhou No.1 Silk Factory where you could not only see how the silk is processed from worm to the final product, but also learn some history and culture of silk in China.

Accommodate at Suzhou City. Have a good rest!

Lingering garden Suzhou No.1 Silk Factory Suzhou Tiger Hill
Day 4 Suzhou – Zhouzhuang - Shanghai (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, take about a half-tour driving to the beautiful water town of Zhouzhuang. 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: 1) take a boat to go through the canals to appreciate the fascinating scenery of water, bridge and local residences and listen to the old songs of the local sculler. 2) watch an free authentic Kun Opera Performance on the street.

After the tour, take a high speed train back to Shanghai.

Suzhou Museum Architecture Zhouzhuang Zhouzhuang Water Town Locals
Day 5 Shanghai Departure (B)

Today is free for you to relax until your tour guide and driver escort you to catch your flight/train/ship to the next destination. Your Shanghai Suzhou trip ends.

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