TRAVEL: Suzhou, Jiangsu

Visited June 13 2010.

Looking Out at the Humble Administrator's Garden

Looking Out at the Humble Administrator’s Garden

Attractions Checklist:

  • The Humble Administrator’s Garden
  • Suzhou Museum
  • Tiger Hill

During our visit to China we had the opportunity of taking a day trip to Suzhou from Shanghai. The China Railway High-Speed (CRH) system is very convenient—the overall trip took approximately 1 hour for an 80-km distance and cost 31 Yuan ($5.20 in American dollars) one-way. From the train station, we entered Suzhou by bus and witnessed the unfolding scene of a city upon the water. The city is divided north to south by the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal and covered by ponds and lakes.

Suzhou is located within the wealthy Jiangsu province—a region located south of the Yangtze River. Throughout history, this region was the hub of commercial development ranging from crop cultivation to silk embroidery production. Today, Suzhou is a major port for electronics. As a result of the commercial growth, literati families had more opportunities to become educated in the arts and literature. The fruits of their knowledge survive today not only in the forms of published literature but in majestic gardens built during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). These gardens were considered a form of art: the dual effect of Chinese painting and poetry. Continue reading