Friday, 6 February 2015


The north entrance to Pingjiang Lu
is a humble looking gateway.

Its nearing Chinese New Year, so allow me to reminisce in pictures some of the more interesting places in China I visited last year. Following the Singapore Chinese Orchestra on its China tour in May 2014 gave me ample opportunity to visit some of Suzhou's fabled sites. Having had quite enough of philosopher's, lovers' and humble administrators's gardens, I had the opportunity to visit Pingjiang Lu, not once but thrice. 

It has to be one of Suzhou's most romantic walks, and the best part of it all - its FREE! A 1.5 kilometre walk along a canal does not quite sound romantic, but one has to take it in one's stride, soak in the atmosphere and smell the flowers (not to mention the canal water). I was hooked, not so much by its recent gentrification but the slow pace of life and simplicity of it all. Old houses, stone bridges, quaint shops and cafés all add to its charm. All this culminated with a simple lunch of home-cooked food (from a nearby hole-in-the-wall kitchen) by the canal with a view of a covered bridge. 

Quite a number of river towns in China
vie for the title "Venice of the East".
Suzhou certainly has its just claims. 
Pingjiang Lu's gentrification has seen many
new shops sprout out along its narrow alley-ways.
There are other forms of transport
but walking is definitely the best.
Terracotta Elvis fronts one café

Any wonder why wedding couples
want to have their pictures taken here?
A great spot for lunch,
with added aromas for free!
Some places look as if time had stood still.
Pinjiang renjia (Denizens of Pingjiang)

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