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Jiangsu

Jiangsu Province, located in middle east China, faces the East China Sea while the Yangtze River flows through it from the east to the west and finally reaches the sea. The province is rich in streams, rivers and lakes. The Grand canal runs from the north to the south. Low-lying, flat and wet, it is one of the most fertile and long-inhabited areas of China, dense in population and with plenty of sights of interest Jiangsu is known as Land of Fish and Rice. The capital city of Jiangsu is Nanjing, one of the six ancient cities in China. Jiangsu has a beautiful landscape with a combination of water and mountains. It is also rich in cultural relics - ancient gardens in the southern China style, steles, old temples and many sites of historic interest.

Jiangsu Province is located in middle east China and it is adjacent to Shanghai on the east, to Zhejiang Province on the north, to Anhui Province on the west and to Shandong Province on the north. It covers an area of more than 100,000 square kilometers, with a population of 66 million. The provincial capital is Nanjing.

The provincial topography is characteristic of plains, with the majority of places less than 50 meters above sea level. It is situated in the temperate zone and subtropical zone, with a humid and semi-humid monsoon climate. There are three large water systems: the Yangtze River, the Huaihe River and the Shuhe River, all flowing from west to east. The Great Canal links up south and north. This province has a crisscross network of rivers and many lakes. The Lake Tai basin is one of the three major bases of sericulture in China.

Recommended Scenic Spots

Taihu Fairy Island

Taihu Fairy Island used to be named as Sanshan (Three Mounts). The islands are located in Taihu Lake, about 2.6km away from Yuantou Zhu (Turtle-Head Isle), with a total area of 2 hectares. If you boat across the lake, the Three Mounts will show you as celestial turtles lying motionlessly on the water surface. The unique and marvelous scenery makes the place very famous. Nowadays much more attractions have been added by a number of elaborately designed architectures with classic Chinese traditional styles. This also enriched the traditional culture connotation of this place. With so many wonders and marvels, the place becomes a fairyland.

On your way of crossing the lake by pleasure-boat, you will see the wonders one by one: the Memorial Archway of the Taihu Fairy Islands, the White Marble Screen Wall of the Jade Emperor Touring the Heavens, the Hill of Flowers and Fruits, and Water Screened Cave, where you can also see monkeys jumping lively. You can roam around Tiandu Xianfu (Heavenly paradise and Immortal Place) there, and listen to the floating ancient music played on the traditional Chinese instruments. Probably most young people would like to tour the Temple of the God of Matchmaker, as well as the Pavilion of Affection Couples. Another choice for you is to have a walk along the Heavenly Street, to buy and have a taste of goods that are considered to be "immortal"; or you would rather like to step into Lingxiao Palace and worship the supreme Jade Emperor, and pay your respects to the civil and military Lords of His Majesty. Here there is another enjoyment of seeing Fresco of Yongle Palace. Then you can get up to the Taiyi Temple of Heaven, to admire the garrison treasure of the Three Mounts-Taiyi Immortal Pill-Making Stove. It is very necessary for tourists to go to visit Dajue Bay and Immortal Cave because these two places are the representatives for the essence of grotto arts.

After the leisure wondering around the area, you must become fresh-minded, more elegant, and in a sense unearthly, healthy and youthful as well.

Tiger Hill

Entitled as "the most famous place in Wuzhong", Tiger Hill, also named "Surging Sea Hill", "Surging Sea Peak", is located at the northwest suburbs of Suzhou city, 3.5 kilometers from the Chang Gate.

Tiger Hill is 36 meters high, 630 meter in perimeter with a total area of 20 hectare (200,000 sq m). Formed about 150,000,000 years ago, Tiger Hill's history can be traced back to 2500 years ago, the same time with the ancient Suzhou city. It is recorded that it was the very place of the tomb of Wu King Helu in the Spring and Autumn Period (770 B.C-476 B.C). In 496 B.C., Wu King Helu died in the war between Wu Kingdom and Yue Kingdom, his son then buried him under the Tiger Hill with his excellent sword.

According to Records or the Historian, three days after the burial of Wu King Helu, people found a white tiger was squatting on the tomb, hence the name Tiger Hill.

During the Eastern Jin dynasty, with a temple built on the hill, Tiger Hill changed into a Buddhism hill from the tomb of the kings. In successive dynasties, more and more architectures were added here and with the change of the dynasties, Tiger Hill experienced the rise and the fall endlessly during 2400 years, which leaves us numerous relics of legacy of history. The ancient carving, the horizontal inscribed boards, the couplets, the poems of the celebrities, the various scenes, the paintings and the handwritings, the proses, so forth and so on, the whole reaches a seldom seen amount, that could be hardly found around the world.

Su Dongpo, literary master of the Song dynasty once remarked, "It's a thing for regret to visit Suzhou without seeing the Tiger Hill". So popular is the saying that the Hill becomes a must on the itinerary of every visitor to Suzhou.

Broken Beam Hall: popularly know as "the Second Entrance Gate", was first built in the Tang dynasty and rebuilt in 1338 during the Yuan dynasty (1338.A.D). Its principal beam consists of two pieces of round timbers, showing the skill and wisdom of the ancient Chinese architect and builders.

Sword Testing Stone: It has a split within it, seeming to be cut by a sword. Legend goes that it was cracked by Helu, who tested all his swords on the stone. According to legend, the king was buried with 3,000 swords. And because all 1,000 builders were killed after building the tomb, the secret of the swords would not be revealed.

Tiger Hill Pagoda: Also named Yunyan Temple Pagoda, the pagoda was first built in the Sui dynasty (581-618) and rebuilt in 961 AD in the Northern Song dynasty. It is the oldest pagoda in Suzhou. Built on an octagonal base, it is 47.5 meters high with 7 stories. From 1638A.D, the pagoda began to lean aside and now the biggest obliquity reaches 3o59', known as China's Leaning Tower. With a history over 1000 years, the pagoda now is regarded as the symbol of Suzhou city.

Tomb of the True Lady: It is the tomb of Hu Ruizhen, a beautiful lady of the late Tang dynasty. She was good at singing and verse and when the bad procuress forced her to ingratiate a visitor, she committed suicide by hanging herself. A pavilion was built by the side of the tomb in memory of the lady.

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