ALP — The Journey to Suzhou

10 Jun

Our theme is about Chinese traditional crafts and artifacts design, therefore, visiting museums becomes an important part of our tour. To make us get more familiar with Chinese traditional architecture and improve our aesthetics thinking, our group leader, Tao Ye, decide to let us have a journey to Suzhou, which is regarded as Oriental Venice. Then, on the morning of May 30th, 2013, our two days journey starts.

We took bus from our hostel at 0730am, after around 3 hours traveling, we get to Suzhou. It is a typical southern town located in southern and eastern part of Jiangsu Province. The city was divided into two parts, the inner city is old and original part which has 2500 years history, and an interesting thing is all the old buildings in the inner part are not higher than 6 floors, therefore, we can still feel the traditional culture and the atmosphere of ancient China.

Buildings in Suzhou.

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This old town is famous for its gardens. There is an old saying “江南园林甲天下,苏州园林甲江江南”, which means the gardens in Suzhou is the best in the world. Hence, our first stop is a well-known garden, 狮子林 (Lion Grove).

Lion Grove Garden.

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We have learnt Chinese traditional architecture culture and get involved into the picturesque scenery. The fantastic stones showed us the strength of history. The only disappointing thing is that the temperature is a little bit low because of the rain, but every one still can’t wait to go to the next stop. After ten minutes plus traveling, we then got to a harbor and take a boat to experience the traditional daily life of local residents.

On the boat. “Look here! Guys!”

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The river and the local housings.

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Then we visit the Han Shan temple (寒山寺), which is famous for a poem, “姑苏城外寒山寺,夜半钟声到客船”. The guide showed us Chinese Buddhist culture, and showed us around the temple.

Outside the Han Shan temple.

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We got to the hotel at night, and after taking a rest, we went to a night market, the long street is filled with red lanterns, walking along the street, you can feel that you were walking in the ancient China, and pretty girls will passed you at any time. (However, because of illness, I didn’t go with them, but according to their description, I can feel the atmosphere in the street. A friend said, if you go, you must fall love with it.)

Second day, we went to the Suzhou museum which is the main purpose of the journey. The museum is built by a celebrated architect, Bei Yuming , and it is also the last work of him. Therefore, the museum is quiet famous for its architectural style.

Suzhou Museum.

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Scenery of the museum.

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The tour finished after we had launch on a street near the museum. In Suzhou, every street, every corner could become a landscape. We deeply feel the ancient Chinese culture during the journey. Unlike the modern city as Singapore, Suzhou gives us the feeling of peace and silence. Tired but excited, we came back. Good night Suzhou, Good night Hangzhou.

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