< Last Photo   << Last Chapter                Notes on the Geography of Places: China: Zhouzhuang         Next Chapter >>   Next Photo > 
 

Notes on the Geography of China: Zhouzhuang

The guide books say that Zhouzhuang, between Shanghai and Suzhou, is an unspoiled example of the kind of town that once dotted the Yangtze Delta.  The Will to Believe is strong, but, as usual, if something's too good to be true it's probably untrue.  Zhouzhuang these days is a tourist production.  Can you get a sense of what the place was like?  Probably better from these pictures than from a visit to the place.

Make default image size smaller

China: Zhouzhuang picture 1

A large parking lot and high-capacity ticket booths lie a few hundred yards behind the camera as we walk into... well, right up front you get the idea.  Cultural Shows can't be far ahead.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 2

Keep walking!  This is a cold winter day, which explains the sparse crowd.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 3

If you had a car, this is where you'd have to stop it.  Never mind: keep walking.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 4

Ah!  So this is what it's about.  A bit of Bruges, a bit of Venice: another town built in the water.  Attractive.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 5

Some houses have been around awhile.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 6

One canal-side house has been made into a museum.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 7

There's a range of bridge types.  Post and lintel here.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 8

Arched here.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 9

There are vehicle-free paths, too.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 10

Some are very narrow, but cars don't have to squeeze through.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 11

Enough atmosphere.  It's time to play your part and shop.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 12

At the least, you can buy a ticket for a boat ride. 

China: Zhouzhuang picture 13

The tourist fleet is tied up at the edge of town.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 14

Think Vermeer could do something with this?

China: Zhouzhuang picture 15

Slack season; time for repairs.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 16

But even in winter a good number of boats ply the canals.  ("Ply" is a nautical term reserved for salts wearing blue caps.)

China: Zhouzhuang picture 17

Much easier than operating an old freight boat.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 18

You almost expect each boat to have a hook grabbing an underwater chain that pulls everybody along with just the right spacing.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 19

Want to see real Zhouzhouang?  How about dredgers.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 20

How about the edge of town?  See that bridge?

China: Zhouzhuang picture 21

Workers going home.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 22

Home.

China: Zhouzhuang picture 23

Not quite so colorful.


www.greatmirror.com Web   
 

* Australia's Northern Territory * Austria * Bangladesh * Belgium * Botswana * Brazil (Manaus) * Burma / Myanmar * Cambodia (Angkor) * Canada (B.C.) * China * The Czech Republic * Egypt * France * Germany * Ghana * Greece * Hungary * India: Themes * Northern India * Peninsular India * Indonesia * Israel * Italy * Japan * Jerusalem * Jordan * Kenya * Laos * Kosovo * Malawi * Malaysia * Mexico * Morocco * Mozambique * Namibia * The Netherlands * Norway * Oman * Pakistan * The Philippines * Poland * Portugal * Singapore * South Africa * Spain * Sri Lanka * Sudan * Syria (Aleppo) * Tanzania * Thailand * Trinidad * Turkey (Istanbul) * The U.A.E. (Dubai) * The United Kingdom * The Eastern United States * The Western United States * The Heartland State: Oklahoma * Uzbekistan * Vietnam * The West Bank * Yemen * Zimbabwe *
go back to previous picture go to next chapter go to next picture go to previous chapter page