Wuzhen is one of China’s ancient water towns, where waterways thread their way through the flagstone streets and alleys. Demonstration in the traditional workshops district display traditional crafts as the printing and dyeing of blue printed fabrics, the primitive techniques of cloth shoe making and tobacco-planing. Visitors may operate the machines to get an idea of how the original work was carried out over 200 years ago. The local houses here are decorated with carved wooden and stone doors and windows.
The waterways of Wuzhen are kept topped up with water by the adjacent Hangzhou to Beijing Grand Canal, which is still used to supply the dry north with water from the wet south and local goods transport. It was a major transport artery in times gone by, which led to the rise to prosperity of water towns like
Former Residence of Mao Dun Mao Dun is a revered writer in modern China, best known for the novel Midnight. Mao Dun, a renowned modern Chinese revolutionary writer, was born in Wuzhen, and his well-known work, 'The Lin's Shop', describes the life of Wuzhen.The home is a traditional Chinese style house built during the Qing Dynasty. In 1991, Wuzhen was authorized as the Provincial Ancient Town of History and Culture and ranked first among the six ancient towns south of the Yangtze River.
Bridge within a Bridge
The "Bridge within a Bridge" is a scenic attraction created by two ancient bridges, the Tongji Bridge which crosses the river from east to west and the Renji Bridge running from south to north that joins the former at one end. Either of two bridges can be seen through the arch of the other, hence the name. Having been rebuilt five times, Tongji Bridge is a 28.4 metres (93 ft) and 3.5 metres (11 ft) one-curvature arch bridge, with a span of 11.8 metres (39 ft). Renji Bridge, which has also undergone repairs during its history, has a length of 22.6 metres (74 ft), a width of 2.8 metres (9.2 ft) and a span of 8.5 metres (28 ft).
Xiuzhen Guan is a Taoist temple which was built in the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127). It is one of three famous Taoist temples on the south bank of the Yangtze River.
Eating in Wuzhen
Wuzhen is a good place to treat your mouth well. Big restaurants and small street stalls offer a great variety of local flavors. In some old restaurants such as Jiujiang Lou and Shanyang Guan visitors can try the famous local dish Steamed Pork Slices with Glutinous Rice Flour Wrapped in Lotus Leaves. Travelers can also choose to dine at one of the locals' homes, provided they speak some Chinese. The food is simple, but dining informally at a Chinese family's home may provide a quite interesting experience.
If you are going to spend a night in Wuzhen, there are also many wonderful options.To meet the great lodging demand especially in peak season, many hotels and inns have been built in recent years. Many are at the “budget” level (like home stay), but there are also some star-rated hotels and boutique hotels. Xi Zha is beautifully lit at night, subtly highlighting various architectural features and the bridges. There is a silent flow of skiffs making night cruises on the main waterway.
Wuzhen is pleasing to the eye and draws one in - into a forgotten time in China when waterways were used like road and rail, and life was simpler. This resort combines new and old really well.