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Human landscape: Tracing a city of antique beauty, Tasting a life of Suzhou style

苏州市, China

Experience hosted by 古城的守望者-阿飞

2.5 hoursHosted in Chinese (Simplified) and English
Committed to safety
This host committed to Airbnb’s COVID-19 safety guidelines.
Up to 10 people
Includes drinks and tickets

What you'll do

People all say that Suzhou is a very beautiful city. Its beauty lies in “delicate bridges, quiet canals and antique houses", lies in classical gardens, lies in buildings with high walls and deep courtyard. At present, most of places where there are bridges, rivers and alleys have obtained great popularity on the internet, such as Pingjiang Road and Shantang Street. Even Tongde Li, an architectural complex built during the period of the Republic of China, which used to be little-known, has now become a famous scenic spot online, because it is one of the most important shooting locations in the hot Chinese TV series called All Good. It seems that no one has ever paid attention to those exquisite ancient houses near the bridge, by the riverside, or in the depth of alleys. This is indeed a regrettable and chilling thing! The ancient houses deeply engraved with the vicissitudes of life and the cultural connotation of ancient buildings contained in them, have been buried unkemptly in the dust of history and are drifting away from us. For the ancient city of Suzhou, it is too helpless and embarrassing to speak out.

I have elaborately planned this cultural tour for you, which will last about 2.5 hours. During the tour, I will share with you the culture and history of Suzhou through the introduction of ancient buildings and alleys, which are both tangible histories. The introduction will help you understand the spiritual connotation of the distinguished families in ancient times and enjoy the life atmosphere of the ancient city. There are also some traditional delicacies and snacks of Suzhou in the route, so everyone can enjoy the special flavor of Suzhou. After the experiential tour, you can ask me if you have any questions about tour, and I will definitely give you a satisfactory answer as long as I know it.

Introduction to the experiential tour:
1. Visit Suzhou's top luxury housing estate built during the period of the Republic of China
2. Walk through the district that has been regarded as Suzhou’s CBD in all ages. Although it is already beyond recognition, it doesn’t matter at all. Let me tell you about what happened here in the past and present.
3. Walk along the only remaining ancient alley in this district. There stands the former residence of a celebrated collector and industrialist whose life spanned from the Qing Dynasty to the period of the Republic of China.
4. Visit the former residence of the head of the four distinguished families of the Qing Dynasty in Suzhou. It has now been transformed into a museum with staves responsible for professional interpretation inside.
5. Walk along another ancient alley and pay a visit to the former residences of the official family and literary family hidden in the alley. Former residence fully embodies the inheritance of the humanistic spirit and this is why I like it very much.
6. Visit the place where I was born. Ha Ha ~~~ Let’s experience the joy of my childhood and the worries of my mother together.
7. Keep secret
8. Keep secret
9. You must be hungry, right? I'll take you to eat the most tasteful vegetable buns or pan-fried pork buns of Suzhou (We have only 5% chance of eating the pan-fried pork buns, because there are usually quite a lot of customers waiting in line to buy it, and our tour time is limited). This will be at your own expense.
10. Go to a small private garden. It is a pity that part of the garden has already been destroyed, leaving only the residential part. The history of this residence can be traced back to the Yuan Dynasty (more than 740 years ago).
11. Savor the traditional sugar congee of Suzhou, which has already been rated as an intangible cultural heritage (It is not available every day, and we have 50% chance of eating it). This will be at your own expense too.
12 Walk along an ancient alley built in as early as the Jin Dynasty. If we come across residents drawing water from a well by chance, I can ask them to let you have a try. In the depth of the alley there is a palace built in the Northern Song Dynasty, which is the oldest ancient building in Suzhou. This is really an exclusive resource! Here we will have a tea break, and the whole experiential tour is over! Thank you!
Other things to note
This is a lot of walking experience. Please pay attention to your physical condition and traffic safety during this activity. We will not be responsible for any accident during this activity.
People all say that Suzhou is a very beautiful city. Its beauty lies in “delicate bridges, quiet canals and antique houses", lies in classical gardens, lies in buildings with high walls and deep courtyard. At present, most of places where there are bridges, rivers and alleys have obtained great popularity on the internet, such as Pingjiang Road and Shantang Street. Even Tongde Li, an architectural complex built during the period of the Republic o…

What's included

  • Drinks
    普通茶水或柠檬水,如需咖啡甜点请自行购买
  • Tickets
    玄妙观门票

Meet your host, 古城的守望者-阿飞

Host on Airbnb since 2018
  • 126 Reviews
  • Identity verified
No need for show, I am from Suzhou
No need for search, I am the culture
No need for note, I know the history
No need for way-finding, I know the route

Please take a few minutes to read all my introductions.
The Experiential Tour has 2 fixed time slots per day:
9:00 am - 11:30 am
2:30 pm - 6:00 pm
Please register according to the actual number of participants. If you need an English guide, please make an appointment with me in advance and the number of participants will be at least 2. If only one person attends and needs to explain more in English, please sign up for 2 people or contact me to change the price! Otherwise, I have the right to cancel the order or not to receive your itinerary.

Born and brought up in Suzhou, I have lived in two major historical districts in Suzhou---Pingjiang Road and Shantang Street. My experiences of playing in the alleys of Suzhou from early childhood have endowed me with a keen perception and learning ability for ancient buildings, ancient alleys, culture and delicacies. I am a native of Suzhou + working as a tour guide is one of my hobbies+ I have made every effort to learn the culture and history of Suzhou+ I have consulted many experts in the culture and history of Suzhou. All of this contribute to a natural experiential route, which is full of the atmosphere of culture, history and folk life, and is away from the commercialized area. It will help you have a better understanding of Suzhou. “Return to the true nature”, this is my travel concept! I am not traveling for travel, but introducing Suzhou for Suzhou!

You may ask why did I think of conducting such an experiential tour (or cultural tour)? Here are my reasons. I feel very saddened by the over-commercialization of the entire Suzhou tourism environment. Suzhou, an ancient city with 2,500 years of history as it is, serves merely to satisfy tourists’ needs either to take a few beautiful selfies or to go to a few so-called “Stores of Internet Celebrity” ... In fact, those tourists have no deep experience of its brilliant culture at all! Hence, I decided to conduct an experiential tour. For me, this is not just experience, but a transmission of culture and an inheritance of history. Just as the saying goes, even a single spark can start a prairie fire, I hope I can do my bit for the improvement of the entire tourism environment of Suzhou!
No need for show, I am from Suzhou
No need for search, I am the culture
No need for note, I know the history
No need for way-finding, I know the route

Please take a few minutes to read all my introductions.
The Experiential Tour has 2 fixed time slots per day:
9:00 am - 11:30 am
2:30 pm - 6:00 pm
Please register according to the actual number of participants. If you need an English guide, please make an appointment with me in advance and the number…
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From $56
/ person
Tue, 20 Apr
$56 per person
$56 per person
Tue, 20 Apr
$56 per person
$56 per person
Wed, 21 Apr
$56 per person
$56 per person

Where you'll be

The trip is mainly on foot. We will start our experience in suzhou, the most prosperous and famous gathering place in ancient timesAncient alleys and streets in suzhouThe culture and customs of suzhouHistorical allusion of suzhouSuzhou snacks
Sima
April 2021
阿飞老师讲解非常精彩,带我深入当地的老石库门民居,讲解观前的历史,拜访名人故居,还带我去了状元博物馆,怡园,教我苏州话。这样跟当地人深入当地的City walk不可多得,超越了我的期待,非常感谢!
静媛
March 2021
阿飞是土生土长的苏州人,行程中包括的都是非景点的路线,老苏州平民的日常生活,对于想体验景点之外的苏州日常的人是很好的选择。一路上顺着大街小巷还讲了很多苏州的趣闻轶事。行程的最后半小时一边喝茶一边教讲苏州话,很有意思。最后推荐的饭店也性价比超高~下次还会再来的~
李零零
February 2021
从承德里开始到学苏州话结束,整个行程安排比较合理。参加过不少citywalk,本地人的讲解还是更深入更有代入感。能感受到阿飞对于苏州古建和苏州历史文化的热爱。感谢愉快的一次体验~
Jared Eiser
February 2021
Gu was a great tour guide, a compelling story-teller and really knows the city by heart. We went during Spring Festival so a lot of their usual places were closed, but they did offer very reasonable alternatives.
Eric
December 2020
整个体验非常愉快,从app上预定后即刻联系到最后结束,阿飞都非常主动与我们取得沟通。这次体验安排的是张老师,对路线及周边非常熟悉,无论是建筑、还是人文、历史等。印象比较深刻的是最开始去的承德里和最后的苏州话体验。人总是会对自己熟悉的东西或者能产生一些共鸣的东西印象深刻。承德里里面整体建筑风格和上海的静安别墅或者愚园路老宅很相似,形成的原因也很相似。如果不特别说明,我想多半熟悉静安别墅的人会认错。张老师对承德里的介绍非常详细,也带我们进了一户民居看看,很棒的体验。最后的苏州话体验么,由于我们说的都是吴语,就改成了猜张老师说的苏州话的意思。大部分和上海话是非常接近的,用的词几乎都一样。毕竟,上海话很大受到了苏州话的影响。我们也和张老师分享了些上海话的讲法,彼此交流非常有意思,尤其是他知道上海话讲“到苏州去了”表示睡着了hhhhh
整个体验非常愉快,从app上预定后即刻联系到最后结束,阿飞都非常主动与我们取得沟通。这次体验安排的是张老师,对路线及周边非常熟悉,无论是建筑、还是人文、历史等。印象比较深刻的是最开始去的承德里和最后的苏州话体验。人总是会对自己熟悉的东西或者能产生一些共鸣的东西印象深刻。承德里里面整体建筑风格和上海的静安别墅或者愚园路老宅很相似,形成的原因也很相似。如果不特别…
Jianing
December 2020
张老师幽默风趣,以本地人的视角带领我们感受老苏州风情,领略从明清到民国再到现在的风采。喜欢人文旅行的游客一定不要错过呀

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Things to know

Cancellation policy

Any experience can be cancelled and fully refunded within 24 hours of purchase, or at least 7 days before the experience starts.

Guest requirements

Up to 10 guests ages 18 and up can attend. Parents may also bring children under 2 years of age.

What to bring

Drinking water