Just a quick thirty minute ride on a high speed train out of Shanghai takes you to one of the smaller popular tourist destinations in China. This old water town has beautifully carved canals stretching throughout it's city earning it the title of the "World's Oriental Venice."
China has this wonderful way of being able to be a magnificent modern city on one side and when you turn around you have been transported back in time. There are people still living in these houses on the edge of the canal with back porches that stretch out into the water, their laundry hung up to dry. And we get to ride past admiring the beauty that is their everyday life.
We hopped on a boat through the canals up to Tiger Hill. Su Shi said, "It is a lifelong pity if having visited Suzhou you did not visit Tiger Hill."
The Tiger Hill Pagoda stands seven stories tall in and octagonal shape and was built during the Northern Song Dynasty over 1,000 years ago. The way that is tilts has earned it the title of China's Leaning Tower.
Then there are my favorite parts of China: the gardens. The country has done such a wonderful job of preserving these beautiful sanctuaries of tranquility and leaving them open for the general public to enjoy. I am completely serious when I say that I would love to have my own version of these gardens someday.
I wish that I had the ability to describe how beautiful and wonderful these gardens are. They have so many different areas to them as well as a plants and architecture. You could easily get lost in one of them in the best way possible.
Suzhou was a wonderful quick getaway just for the day. There were so many more gardens to explore and food to eat. This was definitely a city to come back to.