West Suzhou (Self Guided), 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!
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West Suzhou Map

Guide Name: West Suzhou
Guide Location: China » Suzhou (See other walking tours in Suzhou)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 8
Tour Duration: 4 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 8.8 Km or 5.5 Miles
Author: leticia
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Xiyuan Temple
  • Mountain Villa with Embracing Beauty
  • Garden of Cultivation
  • Golden Gate
  • Shan Tang Street
  • Shilu Pedestrianized Street
  • Classical Chinese Garden
  • Hanshan Temple
Xiyuan Temple

1) Xiyuan Temple (must see)

Xiyuan Temple was built during the Yuan Dynasty and destroyed by the Qing Dynasty. The temple has since been reconstructed by the Emperors Tongzhi and Guangxu. Xiyuan Temple is famous for its styles, combining terrific landscape with the sacred infrastructures. It is the largest temple of its kind in the city.
Mountain Villa with Embracing Beauty

2) Mountain Villa with Embracing Beauty (must see)

Mountain Villa with Embracing Beauty is located inside the Embroidery Museum, Suzhou. In 1997, it was recognized with other classical Suzhou gardens as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The 2,180 m2 garden is composed along a linear axis with three main elements: a grotto called Autumn Hill, and Flying Snow Pool, fed by a waterfall called Flying Snow Spring, and a main hall. The rock work in this garden displays every technique and effect used in Chinese gardens. In addition, it is a recreation of the five important mountains of China, and shows a mastery of creating a sense of vast space in a small area.
Sight description based on wikipedia
Garden of Cultivation

3) Garden of Cultivation (must see)

The Garden of Cultivation is one of the best preserved examples of a Ming Dynasty classical garden in Suzhou. It is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Classical Gardens of Suzhou on the World Heritage list.

The 3,967m2 garden is divided into an eastern section of residence and a western garden section. Altogether the garden has 13 pavilions, 17 tablets, and 8 stelae. The Western section is composed of several pavilions around the main Lotus Pond, a rockery, and a smaller garden addition named The Garden of Sweet Grasses.

The structure of the garden is formed along a north to south axis which ties the three main elements of rockery, pool, and hall together. The 700 m2 Lotus Pond is square with two water tails to give the illusion of infinite size. These tails are crossed by Fish Viewing Bridge and Ferrying Beauty Bridge. The former is a three step arched bridge adjacent to the Fry Pavilion. The latter is a natural stone bridge at the entry to the Sweet Grass Garden. The Garden of Sweet Grasses is a scaled down version of the main garden and consists of the Sweet Grass House and Bathing Gull Pond as well as a smaller rockery.

Operating hours: Monday – Sunday: 7 am - 4:30 pm
Sight description based on wikipedia
Golden Gate

4) Golden Gate

Golden Gate is a prominent historical attraction, located near the ancient Shilu Pedestrianized Street. The gate was built in 1931 and is divided into three arches. The Golden Gate was appropriately named after the wealth and prosperity the citizens hoped it would provide for the city.
Shan Tang Street

5) Shan Tang Street (must see)

Shan Tang Street is an old street, which houses a number of ancient buildings (some of which were occupied by prominent individuals from the various dynasties). The street stretches for approximately 2.5 kilometers and is a prime venue for shopping.
Shilu Pedestrianized Street

6) Shilu Pedestrianized Street

Shilu Pedestrianized Street is defined as the city’s second commercial street. In English, the street means "Stone Road" and was paved with stones during the Qing Dynasty. Shilu is another prime shopping spot, home to a number of different shops, commercial stores, restaurants, fountains, towering trees and neon lights.
Classical Chinese Garden

7) Classical Chinese Garden (must see)

The Chinese garden, also known as a Chinese classical garden, recreates natural landscapes in miniature. The style has evolved for more than three thousand years, and includes both the vast gardens of the Chinese emperors and smaller gardens built by scholars, poets, and former government officials.

The classical Chinese garden is enclosed by a wall and has one or more ponds, a rock garden, trees and flowers, and an assortment of halls and pavilions within the garden, connected by winding paths and zig-zag galleries. By moving from structure to structure, visitors can view a series of carefully-composed scenes, unrolling like a scroll of landscape paintings.
Sight description based on wikipedia
Hanshan Temple

8) Hanshan Temple (must see)

Hanshan Temple, literally "Cold Mountain Temple", is a Buddhist temple and monastery. It is located at the town of Fengqiao, about five kilometers west of the old city of Suzhou. Traditionally, Hanshan Temple is believed to have been founded during the Tianjian era (502-519) of the reign of Emperor Wu of Liang, in the Southern and Northern Dynasties period. The current name of the monastery derives from Hanshan, the legendary monk and poet. Hanshan and his disciple Shide are said to have come to the monastery during the reign of Emperor Taizong of Tang (627-649), where Hanshan became the abbot.
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.
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
Northeast Suzhou

Northeast 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.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.8 Km or 1.7 Miles
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