Water Towns

Mudu

Mudu is a small city that dates back to the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). Built at the foot of Lingyan Hill in the western suburbs of Suzhou, the city once included more than 30 private gardens where wealthy officials, revered intellectuals and artists enjoyed the peace and ambience of canalside living. Its claim to fame is touted on a sign near the entrance to the old town: Emperor Qianlong of Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) visited six times.

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Zhouzhuang

Known as a collection of beauty of China 's water town, Zhouzhuang, like a lotus on the water, is surrounded by rivers as Nanbeichi, Houxiang, Youcheyang and Zhongshi. There are many bridges as well, the most famous being Yong'an and Shide, alias Double Bridge, from which many artists have drawn inspiration, including the eminent painter Chen Yifei. Sitting on a boat, you may be carried away by the quiet and beautiful scene. At night when all streets are empty, you catch a glimpse of dim lights down the narrow lanes. Occasionally, the sweet peace is punctuated by the distant sound of laughter, and a harmonious environment is created.

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Mount Sheshan

Speaking of the mountains in the region of Shanghai, the first that comes to the mind of the locals is Mount Sheshan. The mountain, which was formed around 70 million years ago, has 9 peaks that are often likened to 9 flowers. This back garden of Shanghai is a great destination for sightseers, leisure-seekers and pilgrims. Interesting sites abound. Laid out like a rectangular Latin cross in an area of 1 hectare and rises to 70 feet, Sheshan Catholic Church is the landmark of the region.  Sheshan Observatory built in late Qing dynasty (1644-1911) is China’s earliest facility of the kind, boasting Asia's largest 65-meter radio telescope. Sheshan Astronomical Museum located on the east side of the mountain is a national base for science education.

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