Of course when I’m in my biggest hurry to catch up, my internet fights me. So here I will show you my photos from Hangzhou and Suzhou. While both are much more beautiful from spring to fall, they are still beautiful cities in winter.
Our first stop was Suzhou, which was my first visit to the city. I convinced Jagoda and Gosia that Mingtown International Youth Hostel was a good bet and MAN were we not disappointed! Check this place out! It’s not expensive either. It had a lot of the original architecture. Eye-candy building style. More importantly it was very clean!
On our way to the hostel, Jagoda snapped some shots so that’s why it seems a bit dreary and devoid of life, but it’d because it was quite early yet so the sun didn’t get to dry away the morning fog.
Many are from Suzhou’s ancient culture street which is the same street our hostel was on. This was a happy accident because I didn’t notice the street of the hostel being the same as the famous shopping street with such characteristically Suzhou buildings and canal. Some photos are from parks around the city we walked through. Unfortunately we only had one full day before setting out again. I felt like we could’ve done two full days.
I’m happy we did the boat ride though. The guy actually sang to us which was a hoot! He wasn’t half bad but it was funny and adorable all at once. Speaking of adorable guys, we met two random guys at a bar, who were German and Polish. The Polish girls and he were super surprised to find a countryman in China, as it’s not so common for them. I kind of feel like that with Americans because outside of the big, modern cities, there seem to be not so many, but I could be wrong.
Hangzhou from Suzhou is a quick ride. We take the slow trains if it’s not bad just to save money. The trip was exciting to me because Hangzhou is my first Chinese city and it was fun to go back. You never forget your first!
I even happened upon the same statue I found the first time and took the same photo.. and thus have created a new tradition. Gosia had to leave pretty much right away so she didn’t have time to explore. Me and Jagoda saw her off so she could not be stuck alone.
Jagoda and I took our time to travel the next day at Xihu (West Lake) which is probably one of my favorite places in China. We got to walk around, drank tea, and checked out some goods for sale like silk and souvenirs. We kept walking and used a map to find the Hangzhou ancient culture street. If it seems like every city has one, I’d hazard to say many do, especially cities with tourism.. Why? Because they’re cool!
Speaking of cool, we stayed in a “capsule hotel” which is a thing. It was like.. as if a 12-year old Shiloh wanted to make a hotel. I loved the capsules. It allowed for privacy and security as you need to slide a card to even get in.
So while at the ancient culture street, we got to wander around and eat some stuff. One of which was scorpions. Yeah I ate scorpions. They didn’t taste like anything.. just crunchy, until I ate the meatier, fatter one at the bottom. That one tasted like shrimp, which makes a lot of sense.
The rest of Hangzhou wasn’t so thrilling, as Jagoda left before me and by this point I was tired of travel so I mostly stayed in my capsule watching movies after she left… and sleeping. It was much needed as up until this point we were RUNNING from city to place to city. I still had 2 destinations to go so the rest was needed!
Up next, Wuhan and Hebi!