Wuzhen Ancient Town
On both sides of slabstone-paved street stand pubs, restaurants, pawnshops, weaving and dyeing establishments, and other businesses, all housed in wooden structures of brown. Rivers and creeks spanned with stone bridges in various designs flow through the town, and the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal passes by. Old waterside houses and outside corridors can be found here and there. This is the ancient town of Wuzhen.
 
Strolling with an umbrella along an old lane past the centuries-old wooden houses and seeing the rain flow off the engraved eaves that cover the doorways is an amazing experience. The falling raindrops bring ripples on the river surfaces, while boats travel to and fro. The waterside pavilions and corridors and the arched bridges, all shrouded in drizzle, make up a charming scene.
 
Wuzhen Town, in Tongxiang City, Zhejiang Province, has a history of more than 1,000 years. Of the ancient residential houses, workshops, and stores still standing on the banks of the rivers, 169,600 square meters, accounting for 81.54 percent of the town's total floor area, have remained unchanged, lending an atmosphere of antiquity.
 
Due to its warm and humid climate, and abundant rainfalls and sunshine, the products here are rich, making Wuzhen well-known as "the town of fish, rice, and silk."
 
History and culture
Wuzhen become a living fossil of ancient oriental civilization for its profound history and culture, graceful water town scenery, unique-flavored delicious foods, various and colorful folk-customers and festivals. It is a kind of beauty that naturally endowed .While displaying the extraordinary charming of Chinese ancient culture and souls of the old oriental life. Wuzhen has become a disseminator of traditional culture and emissary of the communication between china and foreign countries. With a good integrations of history ,culture ,nature, and surroundings, advanced and complete service facilities, warmhearted people and service team, Wuzhen deserves to be your best destination in China, no matter for sightseeing, leisure, holidays, or business activities.
 
Wuzhen has many sites of historical and cultural interest. From the Song (960-1279) through the Qing (1644-1911) Dynasties, Wuzhen produced more successful candidates in the highest imperial examinations than any other town south of the lower reaches of the Yangtze River. Bearing witness to the town's emphasis on education is the Lizhi Academy of Classical Learning of the Qing Dynasty, which still retains its original appearance.
 
During the Northern and Southern Dynasties (420-581), Crown Prince Liang Zhaoming once studied at Wuzhen. The prince is famous for his Literary Selections by Zhaoming, a milestone in the history of Chinese literature, and the town of Wuzhen built a memorial archway to commemorate his stay there and has kept it well preserved. Other historical and cultural sites include the Wenchang Pavilion, the Xiuzhen Taoist Temple, the ancient stage, the mansion of a member of the Imperial Academy, and the former residence of Mao Dun, a great master of contemporary Chinese literature.
 
Bridge in Bridge
One may be amazed at the extraordinary scene of Bridge in Bridge created by two ancient bridges, one of which is Tongji Bridge crossing the river from east to west and the other is called Renji Bridge running from south to north and joining the former at one end. Either of two bridges can be seen through the arch of the other, hence the name. Having been rebuilt five times, Tongji Bridge is a one-curvature arch bridge, with a span of 11.8 meters (38.7ft). Renji Bridge, which has also experienced historical repairs, has a length of 22.6 meters
 
You may enjoy the demonstration in the traditional workshops district of such famous traditional crafts as the printing and dyeing of blue printed fabrics, the primitive technique of cloth shoes and tobacco-planing, and operate the machines yourself to get an idea of how the original work was carried out over 200 years ago. You may also walk amongst the picturesque moss-covered streets and walls, the houses decorated with exquisitely-carved wooden and stone doors and windows, and the leisurely and quiet life of the local people in the district of traditional local-styled dwelling houses.
 
Sink into the atmosphere of traditional culture, have a cup of chrysanthemum tea and relax by bargaining on various kinds of handicrafts and local products. At dusk when the street lamps give off their dim lights in the thousand-year-old lanes, you will feel your every step echoing with the history of this ancient and attractive town of Wuzhen.
 
Folk Craftwork
Tradition is still alive in Wuzhen. In addition to flower-drum opera, shadow-puppet shows, and temple fairs, Wuzhen also attracts visitors with its time-honored art of making indigo-dyed printed calico. In ancient times, indigo-dyed printed calico was used for curtains, scarves, and tablecloths in every household in the countryside of Zhejiang Province. Today, it is still common to see old women in indigo-blue gowns leisurely operating spinning wheels or looms at weaving workshops in the old lanes of Wuzhen, while the squeaks of the looms resound throughout the lanes. Carrying on this tradition has become a part of the lives of the old women.
 
The Former Residence of Mao Dun
Mao Dun Museum in Wuzhen Originally built in the central 19th century covering a total area of 650 square meters (7020 sq ft), the former residence of Mao Dun, a well-known Chinese revolutionary writer, was the Mao family home for many generations and witnessed the growth of this great revolutionist and writer. In 1984, the former residence of Mao Dun was renovated and extended to cover a total area of 1,731.5 square meters (18,700 sq ft) - it opened to the public one year later.
 
In 1988, it was listed as one of the Key State Preserved Relic Units and in 1994 was renamed the Mao Dun Museum of the City of Tongxiang. The house has three exhibition areas: 'Wuzhen, the Hometown of Mao Dun', 'the Way of Mao Dun', and 'the Former Residence of Mao Dun (renovated)'. The present Mao Dun Museum can be found to the east of the residence, which used to be Lizhi Shuyuan (Aspiration Academy) where Mao Dun spent his early school years.
 
Simple and Tradition Life
People in Wuzhen live a simple life. Many of them breed silkworms and raise chrysanthemums, and they have mostly retained the tradition of buying fruit and vegetables from trade boats through the windows of their waterside houses. They benefit from an inherited harmony of man and nature and enjoy the pleasing living environment that comes from social progress.
 
Tradition is still very much alive in Wuzhen. In addition to flower-drum opera, shadow-puppet shows, and temple fairs, Wuzhen also attracts visitors with its time-honored art of making indigo-dyed printed calico. Today, it is still common to see old women in indigo-blue gowns leisurely operating spinning wheels or looms at weaving workshops in the old lanes of Wuzhen, while the squeaks of the looms resound throughout the lanes. Carrying on this tradition has become a part of the lives of the old women.
 
The raw material for dye printing is Eupatorium smell, an herb that turns into indigo after being fermented and precipitated. For convenience in transporting the cloth, the weaving workshops and dyeing workshops are usually on the same street, only a few doors from each other. At the dyeing workshop, the cloth is soaked and air-dried again and again to produce white flowers on a blue background.
 
Admission fee: 100RMB/Person
 
Opening hours: All day
 
 
 
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