Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Tourist in Suzhou


The perks of having visitors in town are continuing to add up! (they are leaving on Thu already so not much time left though). Yesterday I stepped into the role of being a tourist in Suzhou, something I haven't been since I moved here, and it was actually a lot of fun! I have only been to one of Suzhou's famous gardens before (I KNOW! Shame on me! Big time!) and the only canal ride I have done took place in the water village Zhu Jia Jiao, so this time I figured it was about time to check some new places in the city where I nowadays officially live.

Destination one was Shiquan Jie, Suzhou's infamous bar street, which is more interesting late at night when it turns into a meat market of old men (western as well as Asians) and young women, me not being one of them. This is a quite dingy place I would say, although during daytime Shiquan Jie is actually quite nice. Yesterday we also found a good shop on the street, namely EURO MODA. :) (Hehe... I wonder how happy Vero Moda is about that name?!) After lunch at YangYang we jumped into a taxi and told the driver to take us to....

Destination two: Tiger Hill. (Quoting travelchinaguide.com): Tiger Hill, known also as Surging Sea Hill, is a large hillock covering some14100 square metres (over three acres) and is 36 metres (118 feet) in height. Climbing the hill, you will find a number of historical sites some of which can be traced back over 2500 years to the founding of Suzhou. Although the hill is relatively small it has rich history.

Yesterday was a perfect day for Tiger Hilling -the sun was shining, the trees still had some colour, it was about 15 degrees and gorgeous. Being a Monday afternoon the place wasn't packed with tourist and yeah... it was actually a really pleasant place to be! (which is kind of rare for tourist destinations in China in my opinion). I cannot believe it took me a whole year to get there, but well... better late than never, right?! If u drop by Suzhou u should definitely visit.






When we felt finished with the hill we jumped into a taxi and asked to be taken to a place where we could go for a canal boat ride... Me, not being a fan of guide books, maps or any other kind of useful preparations, simply engaged in a chat with the taxi driver and...ta-daaaaaaam! He took us straight to a canal place, localed in a small, cosy lane area. (close to Shi Lu 石路) There we took a 40 min canal ride before we grabbed a taxi back to my hood in SIP.



I sent our visitors for massage and indulged in some me-time, before more or less passing out on my bed. Being a tourist ain't no boat ride, it's kind of exhausting if you would ask me?! Also because of all the haggling u have to do at those tourist spots? Every time my visitors wants to buy something I have to step in and tell the sales woman (who normally gets this light glowing in her eyes when she sees my visitors, armed with cameras, and notices that they don't speak a lick of Chinese) to stop bullshitting (100 kuai for a pillow case?! I don't think so!) and give me some real prices. Gosh, how much would they spend if I wasn't with them?! Too scary to even think about.

Anyways, today they are going shopping (with my bf -hehe!) meanwhile I will do some work in Shanghai. Sightseeing is kind of fun, but not every single day.



5 comments:

Mark's Blog said...

It's good to see Suzhou is still green and colorful!!

Really miss it!

njd said...

I always find the observations of my tourists interesting. There are so many things they tend to notice and think is odd. Then I realize that at one point in time, I thought it was particularly odd as well. Where as now it just seems like the norm!
It just makes me chuckle.

Jonna Wibelius said...

njd -that's exactely how it is! Now you are just like... 'ahhh that's just how it is over here'... less than 3 years ago, however, I was wide-eyed when I first saw someone spit in the metro...

sarah said...

Really like the last picture, gorgeous!

Jonna Wibelius said...

Thanks Sarah, it is my favorite too :)