Suzhou is China's silk capital.
It has been known for its delicate silk since ancient times, when fertile soil and a mild climate nourished the production of silk and led to the flourishing of Suzhou embroidery. This tradition of garment decoration threads through 2000 years of the city's history.
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First silk was put to use by the Song Dynasty, but Suzhou became a thriving center for silk industries under the control of Ming Dynasty. Since then silk handicrafts in Suzhou evolved their own style, making these "paintings by needle" impossible to beat even by the great masters of oil painting.
This business brought such good money to the city that, later, famous explorer Marco Polo would record the city as being comprised of "prudent merchants, but skilful in the arts''. In the 20th century Japanese occupation and World War II slowed down the city's growth, but today it is on its way to revitalization.
The concentration of business has taken away some part of Suzhou’s old beauty. The biggest part of the city is packed with hi-tech industries and more than 1500 foreign companies headquartered in the area of three industrial zones - Suzhou Industry Park, Suzhou Industrial Park Export Processing Zone and Suzhou Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zone.
But Suzhou is not just a city for business, but is regarded as one of the greenest cities in the country with numerous gardens and water canals that fueled its reputation as ''Venice of the East''. Most of the waterside architecture has been UNESCO treasured since 1997, while Suzhou's gardens make it a city ideal for strolls and sightseeing. Attractions include;
- The Humble Administrator's Garden, an old park that took sixteen years to build it
- Ping Jiang Road, a beautiful walkway more than thousand years old and lined with shops and remnants of traditional architectural styles
- North Temple Pagoda, the most famous structure in the city that dominates the whole skyline and can be seen from any train station
- Suzhou Silk Museum offers to trace the history of silk trade in Suzhou
After a huge dose of sightseeing have a rest in nearby restaurant or cafe to test whether Chinese cuisine is really hot. From rolls, lotus leaf rice, turnip cakes, buns to green vegetables, and soups you can taste it all only in China, but with a warm welcome in Suzhou. Consult Booked.net if want your stay in any Suzhou hotel be easy and comfortable.