China Suzhou attractions, The Disapearing History -- Zhouzhuang introduced.

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The Disapearing History -- Zhouzhuang


 Zhouzhuang (zhōu zhuāng 周庄) is a 900-year old town in Jiangsu (jiāng sū 江苏) Province, China. It is 30 km southeast of Suzhou (sū zhōu 苏州).


Zhouzhuang is a popular tourist destination. It is one of the most famous water townships in China, noted for its profound cultural background, the well preserved ancient residential houses, the elegant watery views and the strong local colored traditions and customs. It has been called the “Venice of the East”. In an area of half a square kilometer (124 acres), 60 percent of the Zhouzhuang's structures were built during the Ming (míng 明) and Qing (qīng 清) Dynasties, which is from 1368 to 1911.

Twin Bridges (双桥)

Zhouzhuang is surrounded and divided by lakes and rivers. 14 stone bridges cross the rivers, showing distinctive views of the water-town. The Twin Bridges (shuāng qiáo 双桥), which comprise of Shide Bridge (shì dé qiáo 世德桥)  and Yongan Bridge (yǒng ān qiáo 永安桥), are the most famous and are considered the symbol of Zhouzhuang. Built in the Wanli (wàn lì 万历) Era (1573-1619) of the Ming Dynasty, the Twin Bridges are located in the northeast of the town. Shide Bridge is east-west and has a round arch, while Yongan Bridge is north-south and has a square arch. Crossing the two crisscross rivers Yinzi Creek (yín zi bāng 银子浜) and Nabeishi River (nán běi shì hé 南北市河) and connecting at the middle, the Twin Bridges look like an old-style Chinese key. In 1984, 38 canvases of the notable painter, Chen Yifei (chén yì fēi 陈逸飞), were exhibited in a New York gallery of Armand Hammer, chairman of Occidental Petroleum Corporation. “Memory of Hometown”, which depicted the Twin Bridges, was one of the items on display and has gained the world's attention for Zhouzhuang. The painting was chosen to be the first-day cover of the United Nations' postage stamp in 1985.


Fu'an Bridge (富安桥)

Located at the eastern end of Zhongshi Street (zhōng shì jiē 中市街), Fu'an Bridge (fù ān qiáo 富安桥) was built in 1355 during the Yuan (yuán 元) Dynasty. The unique trait of the Fu'an is the consummate combination of the single-arch bridge and the bridge towers which have, are used as tearooms, restaurants and stores, and are good places to appreciate the views while taking a rest.

Shen House (沈厅)

Built in 1742 and  in 1742 and located at the southeast side of Fuan Bridge, Shen House (shěn tīng 沈厅) was the private property of the descendant of Shen Wansan (shěn wàn sān 沈万三), the first millionaire of Jiangnan (jiāng nán 江南) (South of Yangtze River) in the early Qing Dynasty. The whole architectural complex is of the Qing's style and occupies an area of more than 2,000 square meters (half an acre). Over 100 rooms are divided into three sections and each one is connected by arcades and aisles. The first is the water gate and the wharf, where Shen's family moored boats and washed clothes. The middle part includes the gate tower, the tearoom and the main hall. Brick gate tower carved with lively and ingenious figures which tell the historic stories or show the good wishes, make it a rare artwork. Tea room and main hall are places for serving guests, and the furnishings in here are all very elegant. The last section is the two-storied dwelling which consists of several buildings which are quite different from the main hall, more comfortable and refined in pattern and atmosphere.


Milou Tower (迷楼)

Once called the De's Tavern, Milou Tower (mí lóu 迷楼) perches next to Zhenfeng Bridge (zhēn fēng qiáo 贞丰桥) which is at the southwest corner of Zhouzhuang. It is famous for being a rallying place of the literatures in old times. Numerous poets, songs and stories about Milou Tower are wide spread and make it more charming.

Chengxu Taoist Temple (澄虚道院)

Standing on Zhongshi Street which is opposite to Puqing Bridge (pǔ qìng qiáo 普庆桥), Chengxu Taoist Temple (chéng xū dào yuàn 澄虚道院) was built during 1086-1093 of the Song (sòng 宋) Dynasty and also known as Sanctity Hall (shèng táng 圣堂)(Shengtang Hall). After several periods of expansion, it is one of the most famous Taoist temples in Wuzhong Region (wú zhōng qū 吴中区). In an area of 1,500 square meters (1,800 square yards), simple but majestic Shengdi (shèng dì 圣帝) and Doumu (dǒ mǔ斗姆) halls, Yuhuang (yù huáng 玉皇), Wenchang (wén chāng 文昌) and Shengdi pavilions are really elaborate works and masterpieces of Taoist architectures.


Special food

Zhouzhuang has many special foods. The most special food is Elbows and pig hoofs which were the favorite food of Shen Wansan. These two kinds of food originated in Shen’s family in the Ming Dynasty which was used to entertain guests. As a result, they were called Wansan elbows (wàn sān zhǒu zi 万三肘子) and Wansan hoofs (wàn sān tí 万三蹄). You can find them in local restaurants. The local residents also eat Wansan hoofs during festivals.
There are also many other kinds of food. Such us Wansan cake (wàn sān gāo 万三糕), Tongzi cucumber (tóng zǐ huáng guā 童子黄瓜), Shrimp (xiā zāo 虾糟), Sanweiyuan (sān wèi yuán 三味圆) and local fisheries. Zhouzhuang has a kind of aquatic plants called Chuncai(chún cài 莼菜). It’s used to cook soup which is tastes delicious.



The fish called Ba Fish (bā yú 巴鱼) is a kind of small and ugly local fish. It’s less than 100g but costs 38yuan. It’s a fraud.


Many great traditional crafts were developed during 900 years in Zhouzhuang. “Zhouzhuang Bamboo”(zhōu zhuāng zhú biān 周庄竹编) is one of the representatives. The pots in Zhouzhuang are special. Most pots are earthenware or chinaware in other places; however, the pots in Zhouzhuang are made of carved stone. And you can find Pearls and Suzhou embroidery everywhere.


Special activity

  • Burning incense and pray for good luck for the whole year on Spring Festival Eve
  • Celebrate New Year on the New Year’s Day
  • Folk performance
  • Opera performance
  • Welcome the God of Wealth
  • Celebrate Lantern
  • Quanfu Temple Fair (quán fú miào huì 全福庙会)
  • Dragon Boat Festival

Fixed performance

Work Day


  • Old stage [Kunqu (kūn qǔ 昆曲) – the original opera in Kunshan (kūn shān 昆山)]
  • Zhenfeng Street (the performance of traditional crafts, such as paper-cut, straw weaving, spinning, wine, etc.)
  • Jubin Tower (jù bīn lóu 聚宾楼) (traditional opera, drink tea)
  • Water path (the performance of Osprey fishing)
  • Travel at night [from the end of March to the end of November, the Scenario performance of “Shen Wansan travels in Zhouzhuang at night”(shěn wàn sān yè yóu zhōu zhuāng 沈万三夜游周庄)



  • Old stage (opera and learning opera)
  • The performance of traditional crafts, such as boating, etc.
  • Clippers (from the end of March to the end of November)


How to get to Zhouzhuang

From Shanghai (shàng hǎi 上海): You can take a coach from Shanghai Tour Bus Center (shàng hǎi lǚ yóu jí sàn zhōng xīn 上海旅游集散中心)


Charge: Adult ticket 150yuan

Travelers discount:

  • The admission for adult is 100 yuan.
  • Kids below 100cm are free.
  • Kids 100-140cm and elder over 60 years old are 50% off.
  • You can pay 70yuan for a seat in the coach for the above people.
  • But the admission is excluded; you may buy it at the entrance.


  if you need help :just tell us  ----China Special Tours

       Tel:86-773-2851235 Fax:86-773-2851235 Email:

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  • Tourist accident insurance is highly recommended to travelers.2 yuan for each for one day tour.
  • Do remember take your passport on yourself for discount.
  • This route will be changed to ground road if the expressway is blocked due to the bad weather.