Saturday, January 22, 2011

Day 5: Suzhou

Suzhou 苏州

One day trip to Suzhou was a wrong decision. Buying the return train ticket to depart as early as 18:02 was a wrong-er decision.

Lesson 5: If you're on a vacation and you're to travel to another place that you've never been for a one day trip, buying an early return train ticket is not a wise choice. In fact, should have just forget about traveling to that place. And again, proper planning is required.

Gaotie train ticket to Suzhou, one way RMB41 per head.

 Traveling at 286 km/h (and increasing), reaching Suzhou in less than 1 hour (precisely 32 minutes) is definitely possible.

Reaching Suzhou train station there was tonnes of tourist agents approaching us offering "great deals" to tour around city. Ignoring them, we proceeded to the bus stop. The public transport system in Suzhou was not much different to Hangzhou, so we didn't have much trouble finding our way.

The Tiger Hill 虎丘 was the first stop - and one of the only two stops - we made.

Entrance to The Tiger Hill, RMB60 per head. To me, that was way too expensive.

 吴中第一山, which means "the best hill in Suzhou".

There were many tourists with tour guides entering The Tiger Hill with us. We just followed one of the tour guides to listen to her explanation of all the legends behind this historical place, which I think were mostly made-up.

There was a story about this well and the frog-like-stone which I forgot. The frog was waiting for something then it turned into a stone.
Sword testing rock.
Anyone believe a sword done this?

A tomb of some lady.
千人坐 Seat for a thousand people - it is a rock that could fit 1 thousand people on it.

虎丘剑池 The Swords Pond.

There was a story about this lake. Once upon a time, there was this calligrapher named 王曦之 Wang Yizhi, he came upon this lake and saw that there were a couple of geese swimming in it. The geese belonged to a monk. The calligrapher then asked the monk if he can have them (what a greedy fella). The monk told him, he can if he write a couple of words for him. So he did, as shown in the pictures, and he got his geese.

Mr. Chin said this story was total bullshit. He said he would've heard of it if it were true.

 The words were suppose to show how the water flow when the geese were swimming in it.

These holes were on the bridge. The monks used this to fetch water from the river below.
This was the leaning tower of Pisa in Suzhou.
It is leaning towards the right.
Written by the Emperor of China.

Mr. Chin being a kid.
I can also do it!
Hundred steps reach. It was a stair with a hundred and eight steps. It's true and precise - I counted.

A hundred and eight steps.

It seemed as if Chow Yunfatt and Michelle Yeoh from Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon would suddenly appear out of nowhere.

Leaving the Tiger Hill, we found ourselves at a different exit from the entrance which we came in, far from the bus stop. We didn't have any choice but to take a cab to the our next planned stop. Due to the limited time we had we only can choose another destination - 盘门 Panmen City Gate, entrance ticket RMB40 per head.

I particularly like this picture that I took.

The Panmen City Gate was one of the most famous scenery area in Suzhou. It was first built during the Wu Kingdom of Spring and Autumn Period and it is the only well preserved water-and-land city gate in the world now. It was a place with utmost importance for the army in ancient times. The double water city gate is a pioneering work in architectural history. There is a sluice on the gate which can be closed and open by a stone gate at any time to control the water as well as resist aggression. Upon the gate, there is a city tower. There are many ancient weapons on display on the first floor of the tower. And the city wall is 300 meters long and 5 meters high. (Reference site: Travel China Guide)

Check out the scenery. This could never be seen in Malaysia.

The fish in China were really aggressive. They would swim real close to the surface and open their mouths so big you could literally throw bread crumbs into them.

Evening was already approaching by the time we were done. So we took the bus back to the train station and then back to Shanghai.

Shanghai, again

Back in Shanghai, we took a stroll along Nanjing Road Pedestrian Street, bought McD sundae and ate it in the cold. =)

A huge aquarium in one of the shops.
Then we took the MRT back and called it a night.



Since both are still young -so it's OK to be kid LOL

Impressed wif many pics taken - what a load of memory for future "down-memory-trip" !!!

thE gEOgrAphicAlly blind said...

i especially like the scenery pictures =)