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Tai鈥檈rzhuang Ancient Town

Tai鈥檈rzhuang Ancient Town
By Chelsea Hunter

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TP 201809 China 02

Tai鈥檈rzhuang Ancient Town is a World Cultural Heritage Site that is located at the center of the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal. This 2 square kilometer site is tucked in Zaozhuang City, Shandong Province, and it is essentially at the intersection of the provinces of Jiangsu, Shandong, Henan and Anhui. It is considered to be the most stunning water town in the country. This ancient town is a suitable getaway spot for photography lovers who will enjoy the 18 ponds and the 15-kilometer long streets and lanes along the waterways.

 

The Canal Culture

The northern section of the Grand Canal has been rendered non-navigable, and besides, most of the cultural relics are barely discernible. On the other hand, the Southern section has been redone since 2008 though its current state cannot match the original state. Of its sections, the Qianfu Village is a replica of what was there during the Ming and Qing Dynasties as most of the lanes, ancient streets, water gates as well as the embankments are remarkably preserved.

 

Notable Cultural Relics

Typical of an ancient water town in the country, Tai鈥檈rzhuang ancient Town is characterized by lots of churches, temples and pavilions along the river. The key ones include the Mt. Tai Goddess Temple and the Mazu as well as Wanchang Pavilions.

 

Attractions in Tai鈥檈rzhuang Ancient Town

 

TP 201809 China 03鈥 The Beicheng River Scenic Area
This is a wetland park that has beautiful and perfect connection of nine ponds. Along this stretch, the sites to be on the lookout for include Orchid Sandbank, Lotus Creek, Peach Blossom Dock, Mt. Tai Xanadu and the Apricot Blossom Ferry just to name a few.

TP 201809 China 04鈥 The Canal Street Scenic Area
If you are interested in appreciating the ancient scenery of the Grand Canal, this is a suitable location for that. The major scenes that can be enjoyed at this end are the famous Tai鈥檈rzhuang Grand Canal History and Culture Exhibit Hall, the Queen of Heaven Palace, Tai鈥檈rzhuang Battle Park as well as the Tai Shan Tang Private School and the Shuangxiang port.

TP 201809 China 05鈥 The Banqiao Huamenlou Scenic Area
A great deal of traditional Chinese gardens can be appreciated from this attraction site. This area is known for the following scenic spots - the Huamen Tower, Slab Bridge, Lanling Academy, the Tai鈥檈rzhuang Battle Bullet Trace Wall as well as the Tai鈥檈rzhuang Water Culture Art Hall.

 

Activities You Can Engage In

There are a number of activities that can enhance your touring experience while you are in Tai鈥檈rzhuang Ancient Town. You will be entertained by the cultural performances that are held in different locations at this attraction site.

 

You will be particularly dazzled with the folk performance sites that you could catch from the exhibition halls as well as the squares of this ancient town. Some that you could enjoy include:

 

TP 201809 China 06The South Shandong Shadow Puppet Show
TP 201809 China 07Emperor Qianlong Visiting Tai鈥檈rzhuang Town Show
TP 201809 China 08Qin Shu, a form of storytelling that relies on ballad songs along with a musical accompaniment
TP 201809 China 09Liuqin Drama
TP 201809 China 10The South Shandong Drum Performance

 

Besides the shows and performances, boat riding is an interesting way of having a great time in this attraction site. You will find many tourist boats which could either be the cockle-boats or the well-pimped pleasure boats; the latter usually accommodates 35 people while the former can hold a maximum of 10 people. During the boat rides you will enjoy the singing as well as ancient storytelling rendered by the boatmen.

 

How to Get There

You could reach Tai鈥檈rzhuang Ancient Town using various modes.

TP 201809 China 11

Travel by Air:
It will be impossible to entirely rely on air transport to get to the town since the nearest airports are located relatively away from this attraction site. The nearest airports are the Shandong Linyi Airport - 90 kilometers away - the Xuzhou Guanyin Airport and the Lianyungang Baitabu Airport which are 110 kilometers away as well as the Jining Qufu Airport which is 130 kilometers away. You will then have to finish up the journey using a coach or a taxi.

 

Travel by High Speed Rail:
This seems to be a preferred alternative to many people who plan on visiting the ancient town. Most travelers usually take the Beijing-Shanghai Railway to get to Zaozhuang Railway Station which is 70 kilometers from Tai鈥檈rzhuang. You will then have to use either a B10 coach from the Zaozhuang Bus Station to get to Tai鈥檈rzhuang Daqiao Bus Station, from where you will have to use bus 1 to finally get to the ancient town. The other alternative is to use a taxi from the Zaozhuang Bus Station to get to the ancient town.

 

You also have the option of using ordinary trains which will leave you at the Zaozhuang West Railway Station, from where you will have to use either several coaches or a taxi to get to the ancient town. If you plan on proceeding with coaches from the ordinary trains you will have to board the BRT B1 to get to Zaozhuang Passenger Transferring Center. A B2 bus will then take you to Tai鈥檈rzhuang Daqiao Bus Station, and bus 1 will then help you get to the ancient town. A taxi can also help you get to the ancient town from the Railway Station.

TP 201809 China 12

Conclusion

Tai鈥檈rzhuang Ancient Town has earned the title of being the most amazing water town in China. There are a number of attraction sites and activities that could keep you thrilled throughout your visit. You could get to the ancient town by a combination of travel by air, rail or road.

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