After your cruise ship docks in Shanghai, your guide will take you by private vehicle to Suzhou, one of the oldest Chinese towns established around 600 BC in the Yangtze basin. As you explore the lovely environs, you’ll see why this village is often referred to as the ‘Venice of the East’ for its interconnected waterways.
Your guide will tell you how Suzhou was one of the few cities in China to emerge from Mao Zedong’s Cultural Revolution largely unchanged -- including gardens that remained almost intact. Stop at Net Master Garden, an exquisite example of a Ming dynasty garden, and admire its construction as a microcosm of the universe in a confined space, reflecting harmonious Chinese principles.
Next, head to the town's ancient city wall and view Suzhou’s Grand Canal before enjoying a guided tour of a silk-spinning factory. You’ll observe the ways Chinese silk has been produced since the 14th century, and then take a break for a Chinese-style lunch at a local establishment before heading to Zhouzhuang.
When you reach the water village of Zhouzhuang, float through the charming waterways aboard a Chinese-style gondola, and admire the town’s well-preserved architecture dating back more than 900 years. Your guide will point out some of the 60 carved-brick archways and 100 traditional courtyards of the buildings still in use since the Ming and Qing dynasties. Observe everyday life along the waterways – where residents do everything from shopping from boat vendors to washing their clothes – before your day trip ends with return transport to the Shanghai cruise port.
Worry-free Shore Excursion
We will ensure your timely return to your cruise port in Shanghai for this activity. In the event your ship has departed, we will arrange for transportation to the next port-of-call. If your ship is delayed and you are unable to attend this activity, your money will be refunded. See our terms and conditions for full details.