Zhouzhuang Recommended Itinerary
Recommended Itinerary For a one-and-a-half Day Visit
Day 1: After having checked in at your choice of lodging, stroll/ rickshaw about town to get your bearings, and make note of the layout of the village. After your evening meal and after night has begun to fall, go to the nearest canal and rent yourself a gondola for a nighttime canal tour of the village. If you tell the gondolier the name of your hotel, you can be set off at the nearest point when you return.
Day 2 (the bulk of the Ancient Town Tour): Get an early start and visit first the famous Twin Bridges, which is THE most touristy venue in Zhouzhuang, then on to Shen Mansion, the second-most touristy venue. Then stroll/ rickshaw down to the bridge below Shen Mansion and cross westward over to the southwestern islet where you can fittingly pay a visit to "Blessed" (Quanfu) Temple, then the Former Residence of Ye Chucang, then cross over any bridge that will get you to Zhouzhuang's most rectangular islet (Zhenfeng Bridge is most westward, Taiping ("Peace") Bridge is most eastward, while Puqing Bridge is in between), then turn right and proceed across Fu’an Bridge (inspecting the bridge of course, since it is one of Zhouzhuang's most attractive after the Twin Bidges) and head for Shenting ("Shen Mansion") Restaurant.
After a fortifying lunch, you are off to Zhang House, then cross the Twin Bridges in reverse, i.e., cross the bridge that takes you to the islet north of the stone-axe shaped islet where Zhang House is situated, then cross westward over to the islet where the Tourist Reception Center is located, then walk/ rickshaw the entire length of this islet westward, crossing the bridge leading southward to the islet where Milou Tower is situated. Thereafter you can visit Chengxu Taoist Temple, and if you have any steam left, you can cross (northward) one of the other bridges east of where you crossed southward to visit Milou Tower, then make your way to Zhouzhuang Museum, where you can learn a lot more about what you have just seen.
An alternative to the rather hectic second day of the above itinerary is to take in one or two of the lesser-frequented attractions on the first day, while strolling/ rickshawing about town to get your bearings. What you will choose to visit on the fist ½ day will probably depend on where you plan to stay for the night. Happy rickshawing!
Note that in 2003, Zhouzhuang was awarded a "Cultural Heritage Protection Prize" by the Asian-Pacific branch of UNESCO, and in the same year it was recognized as one of the "Famous Historical-Cultural Towns of China". And to think that it all began because a certain Russian-American saw a painting of ancient Zhouzhuang's Twin Bridges in a New York art gallery...
Zhouzhuang is a beautiful, picturesque village of willow-lined canals that are contiguous with rows of waterside buildings with whitewashed walls and gray slate roofs, and whose wooden eaves are upturned in the quintessentially Chinese fashion. » more
Zhouzhuang has a long tea drinking history, as indicated above, but the city likes its pastries as well as its more substantial dishes, such as those made with pork, traditionally the most popular meat in China.» more
There are direct buses from Shanghai, Suzhou, Kunshan or Qingpu to Zhouzhuang. You can take a bus or a train from Shanghai to Suzhou, then take one of the Suzhou-Zhouzhuang options. » more
If you have time for it, spending a night in Zhouzhuang is an excellent idea, as it will give you more time to see the sights at a more leisurely pace, especially the sites where the tourist traffic can be considerable as the day progresses.» more
Day 1: After having checked in at your choice of lodging, stroll/ rickshaw about town to get your bearings, and make note of the layout of the village. » more
Despite its small size, Zhouzhuang observes a fair share of annual festivals, the most popular being the Fast-Boat Race and the Lantern Rowing Ceremony. » more