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15/05/2014

Suzhou’s 5 Best Hiking Routes

So it's that time of year again. The sun is shining, the birds are singing and that ass dent in your sofa is lets face it, wider than it should be. Time to get rid of your spare tire and enjoy some of the great hiking that Suzhou affordable China tours has to offer. Here's a few routes to get you started.

The Low Road (Suzhou Taihu National Tourism Vacation Zone)

If you’re not looking to get into anything too crazy, the Huantaihu Avenue trail is the route for you. Although this trail follows the road, it offers some truly stunning views of Taihu Lake. The blue-green water and tropical vegetation will remind you of how close to the sand and sun we really are. The open bay looking out onto small brown islands give the third largest lake in China the breezy feel of the ocean. Start exploring off the main road, especially near the Shanghai Expo statue. There are many hidden gardens and paths along the shore of the lake.

The High Road (Suzhou Taihu National Tourism Vacation Zone)

When you get tired of the scenic roadway and want to find adventure, head for the hills. The forest trail starts on a nameless road between Huantaihu Avenue and Xiangshan Middle School and ends at Hu Yang Ze at the top of Yu Yang Mountain top 10 China tours. Unfortunately at present the trail is gated off and closed until landscaping is completed (no signs of current landscaping activities were detected). In order to circumvent these inconveniences you will have to dodge the harsh shrieks of an elderly municipal servant sitting in her chair, then hop a short gate. Along the way you will see some impressive views of the lake on one side as well as green rolling hills on the other. The hike culminates at the Hu Yang Ze temple where you can find your way down.

The Road Less Travelled (Suzhou Taihu National Tourism Vacation Zone)

Your hike need not stop at the Hu Yang Ze temple. Follow the road at the top of the mountain towards Kwan-Yin Palace (it is a small local temple, well worth a look). Between Hu Yang and Kwan-Yin you will find a narrow path leading into the forest down the mountain. Take it! The narrow path can be tricky when wet but ends at yet another temple compound. Head along the wall towards the back end of the compound and you will find a beautiful garden and cherry blossoms along a dirt road way. Follow this road (turn right or left) till you reach Huantaihu Avenue popular China tour package.

Qionglong Mountain (Qionglong-Shandong Wu National Forest Park)

This mountain is the highest in Suzhou. It is also the home of the site of an 1800 year-old Taoist temple, a trail used by Emperor Qianlong, and the garden where Sun Tzu wrote The Art of War (yep!). Despite a steep 80 yuan entrance fee this mountain, criss-crossed with picturesque trails and gorgeous temples, delivers exactly what it promises. Highlights include the opportunity to bang a massive bell at the top of a tower as well as destroying friends and enemies alike in the Sun Tzu garden. The three story Taoist temple has guided tours (Chinese language only) but seems to be used more for tourist purposes than actual worship. However with its extensive trails, temples, scenic spots, and history, Qionglong Mountain is well worth the 80 kuai.

Lingyan Temple Route (Lingyanshan Scenic Area)

Take the subway and bus to Lingyan Temple China travel guide. Once you've made the climb to the top, haul yourself over the hill to follow the trail that leads to behind the temple. You could literally spend days exploring the rolling hills that stretch across the Lingyanshan Scenic Area. However there is a well-established trail that leads you out to 193 village road.

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