Northeast Suzhou (Self Guided), Suzhou

Suzhou is famous not only for its numerous classical Chinese gardens, but also for its variety of cultural venues and sacred temples. While in northeast Suzhou, you will find many attractions, including Suzhou Silk Museum, Folk Customs Museum, Suzhou Museum of Opera and Theatre, and prominent gardens.
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Northeast Suzhou Map

Guide Name: Northeast Suzhou
Guide Location: China » Suzhou (See other walking tours in Suzhou)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 7
Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.8 Km or 1.7 Miles
Author: leticia
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Suzhou Silk Museum
  • Beisi Pagoda (North Temple Pagoda)
  • Folk Customs Museum
  • Suzhou Museum
  • Humble Administrator's Garden
  • Lion Grove Garden
  • Couple's Retreat Garden
Suzhou Silk Museum

1) Suzhou Silk Museum (must see)

The Suzhou Silk Museum is a museum in Suzhou, China. It documents the history of silk production and Suzhou embroidery from around 2000 BC. Exhibits include old looms with demonstrations, samples of ancient silk patterns, and an explanation of sericulture. Of major note is a room full of live silk worms, eating mulberry leaves and spinning cocoons. By December, 2009, the live silkworms had been replaced with models.

Operation hours: Tuesday – Sunday: 9 am - 5 pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
Beisi Pagoda (North Temple Pagoda)

2) Beisi Pagoda (North Temple Pagoda)

The Beisi Pagoda or North Temple Pagoda is a Chinese pagoda located at Bao'en Temple in Suzhou, Jiangsu Province, China. The base of the pagoda has an octagonal frame, and the tower rises nine stories in a total height of 76 m (243 ft). The pagoda was once eleven stories tall, but was damaged and reduced to nine stories. Its double eaves and flying corners are similar to that of the Liuhe Pagoda found in Hangzhou.

Although the present structure dates to the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644) (with renovations in following eras), the historical site of construction for the pagodas dates back 1,700 years. A Buddhist pagoda built during the reign of Sun Quan in the 3rd century originally stood at the site (in honor of his wet nurse), along with another pagoda built during the Liang Dynasty (502-557). The current design of the pagoda structure was made between the years 1131 and 1162, during the Song Dynasty (960-1279). However, the pagoda was burnt down by fire towards the end of the Song Dynasty and rebuilt during the MIng.

The latest restoration of the pagoda was in 2006.

Operating hours: Monday – Sunday: 7:45 am – 5 pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
Folk Customs Museum

3) Folk Customs Museum

Folk Customs Museum is a local museum which focuses on folk customs. The museum officially opened to the public in November 1986 and houses a rich collection of artifacts in three different exhibition halls. The building of the museum dates back to the Qing Dynasty and is listed as one of the main historical sites in the city.

Operation hours: Tuesday - Sunday: 9 am - 4 pm
Suzhou Museum

4) Suzhou Museum (must see)

The Suzhou Museum is a museum of ancient Chinese art, ancient Chinese paintings, calligraphies, and hand-made crafts, situated in Suzhou, Jiangsu, People's Republic of China. It is free to visit.

In 1960 the Museum was founded and first open to the public in the former residence of the Zhong Prince of the Taiping Heavenly Kingdom.

The current building of Suzhou Museum was designed by Pritzker Prize-winning Chinese-American architect Ieoh Ming Pei in association with Pei Partnership Architects. Construction of this building started in 2002. It was inaugurated on October 6, 2006.

The museum has a display area of 2,200 square meters. It has more than 15,000 pieces in its collections. Most are ancient paintings and calligraphy, ceramics, crafts, unearthed relics and revolution relics. It also possesses more than 70,000 books and documents, and over 20,000 rubbings of stone inscriptions. The collection of paintings and calligraphy includes works of masters from Song Dynasty to Ming and Qing dynasties.

Operation hours: Tuesday – Sunday: 9 am - 5 pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
Humble Administrator's Garden

5) Humble Administrator's Garden (must see)

The Humble Administrator's Garden is a renowned Chinese garden in Suzhou. At 51,950 m2, it is the largest garden in Suzhou and is generally considered to be the finest garden in all of southern China. In 1997 it was proclaimed a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is classified as a AAAAA scenic area by the China National Tourism Administration.

Today's garden is only very loosely related to its earliest version, but maintains its late Qing appearance, with numerous pavilions and bridges set among a maze of connected pools and islands. It consists of three major parts set about a large lake: the central part (Zhuozheng Yuan), the eastern part (Dwelling Upon Return to the Countryside), and a western part (the Supplementary Garden).

In total, the garden contains 48 different buildings with 101 tablets, 40 stelae, 21 precious old trees, and over 700 Suzhou-style penjing/penzai. Eastern Garden Composed of a few buildings around a central great lawn and pond combination. Central Garden is composed of many scenes arranged around the Surging Wave Pond. Within the pond three islands recreate the scenery of the fariy islands of the east sea.

Operating hours: Monday – Sunday: 7 am - 5:30 pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
Lion Grove Garden

6) Lion Grove Garden (must see)

The Lion Grove Garden is famous for the large and labyrinthine grotto of taihu rock at the garden's center. The name of the garden derives from the shape of these rocks which are said to resemble lions. It is recognized with other classical Suzhou gardens as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The 1.1 ha garden is divided into two main parts, a housing complex and rockery around a central pond. In addition to the 22 buildings the garden also houses: 25 tablets, 71 stelae, 5 carved wooden screens, and 13 ancient specimen trees, some dating back to the Yuan dynasty.

The garden is most famous for its elaborate grotto of Taihu stone. This 1154 m2 grotto contains a maze of 9 paths winding through 21 caves across 3 levels. The pond divides the grotto into east and west sections. The taihu stone peaks are located atop this grotto. Most famous is the Lion Peak surrounded by four other stones which collectively form the Famous Five Peaks. There is a folktale about two immortals, Iron-Crutch Li and Lü Dongbin who wandered into the maze of the Lion Grove and being unable to exit settled in a cave to play chess.

Operating hours: Monday – Sunday: 7:30 am - 5:30 pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
Couple's Retreat Garden

7) Couple's Retreat Garden (must see)

Couple's Retreat Garden is a famous classical Chinese garden. It is recognized with other classical Suzhou gardens as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The 0.33 ha garden is divided into an east and west section by the residential core in the middle; an unusual composition for a classical garden. The eccentric design is continued in the form and details of many of the garden buildings, especially the Taosim Tower.

The garden is located in the intersection of canals and is surrounded by water on three sides. It is accessible directly from the canal by boat. The West garden is composed of several structures grouped around a small grotto and a Library annex. It is structurally joined to the central residence. East Garden is the main garden of the complex. It consists of a grotto and pond ringed by a covered walkway that connects the structures. A smaller fruit orchard annex is attached.
Sight description based on wikipedia

Walking Tours in Suzhou, China

Create Your Own Walk in Suzhou

Create Your Own Walk in Suzhou

Creating your own self-guided walk in Suzhou is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Central Suzhou

Central Suzhou

Downtown Suzhou is a mix of modern business hub and historic area where time seems to have frozen. Among the attractions worth visiting here are The Suzhou Police Museum, Dinghui Temple, Twin Pagodas, Xuanmiao Temple, and lively Guan Qian Street, all located within a walking distance from each other in the heart of the city.

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 6.0 Km or 3.7 Miles
Suzhou Shopping

Suzhou Shopping

Suzhou is an excellent shopping destination, where many travel to purchase prominent Chinese silk embroidery, hardwood articles, sandalwood fans, silk fans, palace fans, jade carvings and various other handcrafts. Visit these shops and you're sure to find something of value.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.8 Km or 3.6 Miles
West Suzhou

West Suzhou

Suzhou's western region is an interesting tourist destination, where one will find sacred temples, Chinese classical gardens, ancient buildings, and streets with a variety of shopping options. Check out west Suzhou today!

Tour Duration: 4 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 8.8 Km or 5.5 Miles
Southern Suzhou

Southern Suzhou

The southern region of Suzhou is home to a number of historic attractions and prominent city landmarks. Here you will find the famous Grand Chanel, Pan Gate, Ruiguang Pagoda, Wu Gate Bridge, Great Wave Pavilion, Confucian Temple and Master of the Nets Garden.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.9 Km or 3 Miles