Travel with us, you will have chance to visit the 5 major water towns near Shanghai, which are Zhouzhuang, Tongli, Wuzhen, Xitang and Luzhi. You can explore the beauty of the Zhouzhuang, the “No.1 Water Town in China”, or appreciate the peaceful atmosphere of Tongli, which is known as the "Oriental Venice". You can also enjoy the unique architectures in Wuzhen or take a short stop at picturesque Xitang, Alternatively, make a stopover in Luzhi, to walk into history frozen in time, tranquil and serene…With profound historical accumulations, brilliant cultures and distinctive customs, they are fully reflected the gratefulness and sentiment of China.
Zhouzhuang Water Town
45km to the southeast of Suzhou, Zhouzhuang is considered to be the "No.1 Water Town” in China. As a typical watery town, it has a history of over 900-year and renowned for its profound Wu Culture, unique architectural tradition and unspoiled folk custom, etc. With lakes on four sides, the beauty of Zhouzhuang is specially to be found along the waterside lanes and around a number of the stone bridges.
It was entitled one of the Famous Historical and Cultural Town of China in 2003. In 2004, it was listed in the tentative list for UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Famous attractions: Former Residence of Wansan Shen, Fuan Bridge, Shen’s Mansion, Hounded House
Tongli Water Town
With a history of over 1,000 years, Tongli is a typical water town in Jiangsu Province. The city is separated by 15 rivers into seven islets, which are connected through 49 ancient bridges. Tongli, established in the Song Dynasty, has a history of over 1,000 years. Like other water towns, Tongli is built along the water and separated by river courses into seven islets.
Tongli is reputed for its well-preserved Ming and Qing style architectures, varied shaped old stone bridges and bountiful rivers, while all of which, made it a decent, quiet and picturesque watery town. In 2004, it was listed in the tentative list for UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Famous attractions: Tuisi Garden, Huancui Resort, Gengletang Garden, Woyun Temple
Wuzhen Water Town
Wuzhen Water Town is one of the 4 grand Ancient Towns of Yangtze, which still well preserved its late Qing Dynasty style layout and water system - the whole town is built along the rivers, while the river courses crisscrossed in the town. Water and Town, Wuzhen is a particularly elegant blend of nature and culture. Enjoys superb climate and geographical conditions, Wuzhen is also a place where people called "the land of fish and rice”.
Even on a cold, rainy spring day, Wuzhen, a town surrounded by rivers, about 80 minutes south of Shanghai, has a special beauty which has not yet been overrun by tourists.
Famous attractions: Former Residence of Mao Dun, Old Street of the West Gate, Wenchang Pagoda
Xitang Water Town
Rich in historical and natural resources, Xitang Water Town is one of the cradles of Wu and Yue Culture. Lies 85km to the southeast of Suzhou, Xitang is separated by 9 river courses into 8 islets, but 24 time-honored stone bridges connected and reunited all the pieces together.
Peaceful and severs, there are many well-preserved architectural groups constructed during the Ming and Qing dynasties, which boast a higher artistry and study value, thus being highlighted by the experts at home and abroad studying antique buildings.
Famous attractions: Xiyuan Garden, Wolong Bridge, Temple of Sir Jin, Shipi Lane, Chinese Spirits Museum
Luzhi Water Town
Lies 23 km to the north of Suzhou, Luzhi Water Town is a typical ancient watery town renowned for its old folk houses, Arhat Statues of Baosheng Temple and ancient business street, etc. Luzhi also enjoys a reputation of “land of bridges” as it well preserved over 41 varied shaped stone bridges, dating back from Song Dynasty (960-1279) to Qing Dynasty (1636-1911).
Puli was the ancient name of Luzhi Water Town. An old poem 'Scene of Puli' is still an accurate description of the scenery in the ancient town Luzhi today. It reads, 'Long bridge short bridge with willows; Front stream rear stream with lotus; People watching banner over wine store risen; Seagulls escort boat to home of fishman.'
Famous attractions: Baosheng Temple, Ancient Business Street, Chenghu Lake Unearthed Cultural Relics Museum
The above are the most famous water towns or ancient towns near Shanghai. It is only recommended ti visit one of them. No need to visit all of them.