The Water Towns

We had avoided many destinations in China during the Spring Festival (Chinese New Year).  We had heard and seen the throngs of people who travel during that time.  This year, being perhaps our last in this big country, we have quite a few cities left on our list.  So we took a chance and got lucky.

Suzhou is a city in Jiangsu Province, just west of Shanghai.  It is in the Yangtze River Delta, which lends itself to beautiful views on many canals and ponds.  It has more than two thousand years of history and is sometimes called the Venice of China or Venice of the East.  The meticulous gardens are, together, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, along with those in the other water towns along the canals.

It was a quick trip down to Shanghai, then a full day along the canals, and a trip back to the tundra the next day.  On our water town excursion, we spent a rainy morning and midday in Suzhou, then went on to an overcast Tongli and, finally, some sunshine in Zhouzhuang.  It is a touristy area, yes, but lovely, just like all the pictures I’ve admired for so long.  And, because it was the weekend before the Chinese New Year, perhaps many other travelers were with their families.  I hope they had a lovely time because we certainly did.

Enjoy some of our views in the water towns.

Revisiting Fall

I have already written about our food experiences in Seoul, and I have a bit more to share.

What a gorgeous fall weekend we had with friends.  The colors on this glorious fall weekend were amazing.  We talked, walked, toured, ate, drank, walked some more, bought, ate some more, and had a fantastic time together.

Most of these photos were taken at Changdeokgung Palace on our tour of the secret back garden, and there are some other spots too.  As I settle in for another couple of months of winter, I thought it would be nice to revisit fall. Enjoy.

Qingnian Park

Up the street a few long city blocks lies Qingnian Park. It is a peaceful gem in the middle of traffic and construction. My visit a couple of weeks ago was in the early morning of a beautiful fall day. I was surrounded by the tai qi practitioners, the walkers and fishermen, those congregating for morning fellowship and gossip updates, and more. It was the beginning of a lovely day. Enjoy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another Walk Along the River

I would prefer to take pictures on blue sky days, but in this city, it is not always possible.  Sometimes, you make a plan for a walk or a bike ride and you end up with a 275 air quality index.  Cover your mouth and hop on your pink bike.  Beautiful view, albeit veiled in pollution, await.  Enjoy.