Location: East China (30 minute bullet train to Shanghai)
Population: 4.3 million (main city)
Suzhou, located in Jiangsu province, is China’s cultural and historical capital and the most affluent area in the country. With it’s beautiful lakes, rivers and canals and stunning traditional architecture, it is no wonder this city has been dubbed the ‘ Venice of the Orient’. Suzhou is the largest non-capital city in the world and is famous for its arresting scenery.
PLACES TO GO
Suzhou’s classical gardens: recently added to UNESCO’s list of world heritage sites, Suzhou is home to over 60, meticulously designed and cared for classical gardens aiming to mimic natural landscapes in miniature.
The Yangtze River and Lake Tai: the areas surrounding Suzhou’s most famous lake’s and rivers are hosts to collections of pagodas, shrines and small villages, making for a beautiful and interesting experience.
Suzhou Museums: the city has a multitude of museums to explore such as: Suzhou Museum which holds more that 150,000 pieces telling the story of China’s history; Six Arts Museum which shares the history of Chinese folk art; and the Kunqu Opera which acts as both a museum of Chinese traditional opera and a venue for live performances.
THINGS TO EAT
Suzhou is known for its vegetable and fish based dishes such as: sweet and sour mandarin fish, Taihu boat dishes, Suzhou style moon cakes, Fengzhen noodles, youtunjinjiao, and paopao wontons.