4 star rating: Recommended 19 Reviews

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  • Location:Shanghai, China
  • Duration:5 hours (approx.)

Zhouzhuang Water Village Tour from Shanghai

Take a gondola ride through the elegant waterways of Zhouzhuang, the 'Venice of the East.’ You’ll step into the old residences of Zhang House and Shen House, and wander through the vast expanse of courtyards, arcades and rooms that make up these complexes. Don’t miss out on visiting one of the most popular tourist destinations in China, with its other-worldly landscapes and stunning architecture.


  • Sightseeing tour of the Zhouzhuang water village
  • Enter the ancient and immense residences of Zhang House and Shen House
  • Enjoy a ride on a Chinese-style gondola through the Old Town
  • See views unique to Zhouzhuang like the Silk Mill and the Double Bridges
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off included

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

With its interconnected waterways and dreamy landscapes, Zhouzhuang is one of the top water villages in China. Take a step back in time to view magnificent canals and stone bridges. The majority of the town’s residences were built in the Ming and Qing dynasties, and nearly 100 traditional courtyards and 60 carved-brick archways are still in use. You will visit two of the most popular sights in this water town: Shen House and Zhang House.

Shen House was a private property built in the Qing style, and occupies an enormous area of over 2,000 square feet (186 square meters). It features charming displays like a water gate, a gate tower, a tearoom and a main hall. It also has artworks including carvings that tell historic stories, a painted sculpture of Shen Wansan, and other cultural relics such as folk instruments. Zhang House is equally impressive, with 70 rooms taking up over 1,900 square feet (177 square meters). It is a graceful residential house with a tranquil courtyard and pond.

After walking with the locals in the town's cobbled lanes, you will be taken on a Chinese-style gondola ride through the old town, where you can admire the simple and well-preserved architecture that dates back more than 900 years. Locals still live their life on the waterways, carrying out daily activities such as washing clothes and shopping from vendors on boats. You will have the opportunity to take many photos of this picturesque town.

This tour provides hotel pickup and drop-off and is a great way to learn about the cultural background of China’s Jiangsu province.

Customer Reviews

mark palmer
United Kingdom

5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2014

Lovely little tourist village with a song on a boat ride!

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2013

A great escape from the hustle and bustle of Shanghai. We departed Shanghai around 2pm which allowed us to see Zhouzhuang both during the day and at night. Great way of doing the tour as the village completely transforms when the sun goes down and all the lights come on! Riding in the gondola was definitely the highlight!

United States of ... 

5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2013

An interesting tour away from Shanghai for the afternoon. It was a long drive (and heavy traffic), but the late start meant that we were able to see Zhouzhuang at sunset, with the lights on. We saw two different Chinese houses, many bridges did a gondola ride (with singing gondolier) and had free time to do a spot of shopping. A fun day out!

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2013

Highly recommend. Lots of shops and local atmosphere.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended April 2013

We were picked up at our hotel promptly by two charming local guides who spoke good English. There were only four people on the tour so it was very personalised and we got to interact with the guides. The village was very interesting as was travelling to it. Our guides were very informative and we were impressed with the whole tour.

5 star rating: Highly Recommended August 2012

I recommend this tour to anyone staying in Shanghai for more than a day. Strolling along the water and the actual ride on the water was great. Definitely agree to tip the lady paddling the boat to sing to you. It's unforgettable and you can really make there day my tipping them a couple dollars worth.

4 star rating: Recommended August 2014

The tour is very good and the village is very beautiful. However, there are some points that I didn't like that much:
1. The trip takes 1 hour and a half, each way. And by the time the tour leaves your hotel (around 2PM) the traffic is quite chaotic in Shanghai for the first half hour. When you come back, around 5:30 - 6, the traffic is even worse. The tour company can't do anything about the traffic, of course, but they could plan it better to try to avoid as much traffic as possible.
2. The actual time you spend at the village is short, 1 hour or so. It makes sense because the excursion is "half-day" but still they could plan it better to spend more time there.

The good points are:
* Apparently the village was open to the public on 1995, which makes it one of the newest ones and more 'preserved'; thus, not SUPER full of tourists like everywhere else in China. Do expect some people though, it is China after all...
* The boat ride IS relaxing and cool. I was the only one in the tour (with the guide) and I felt it could be awkward, but it wasn't. It was just cool and relaxing just as they say in the description.
* You see old people in the village, living there. The atmosphere is great. The private house that the tour takes you into is very interesting and nice too.

No shopping stops and the guide had very good english. Overall a good experience!

4 star rating: Recommended December 2013

Great trip!!

4 star rating: Recommended November 2013

Very interesting look into the countryside and at a bit of history.

4 star rating: Recommended June 2013

Quite a nice place to visit, it really does seem like the 'Venice of the east'. Interesting alleyways and buildings but also with plenty of shops. Give it a try!

From USD $ 110.00

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Tour code: 5335P50


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