Things to Do in Kunshan, China + ATTRACTIONS + UNIQUE EXPERIENCES. SEE MY TRAVEL ADVENTUReS IN KUNSHAN! | by a FORMER Kunshan Expat
For all you avid photographers out there—including those that simply like taking photos of Kunshan to share with family and friends back home—here’s my list of top 6 destinations for capturing the best shots of life in the city.
Tinglin Park is a great representation of the Chinese concept of “Feng Shui” when traditionally applied to recreational spaces in the country. The park is riddled with picturesque natural scenery at every turn, and it seems as though the landscape blends flawlessly every few meters or so from one type of plant, flower, or tree to another. With that in mind, you’re also bound to come across a few Tai-chi practitioners “performing” in the area and unknowingly paving the way for you to shoot some amazing photos of them in action against the scenic backdrop of the park. If you’re fit enough to climb its hill, you can catch a remarkable bird’s eye, panoramic view of Kunshan’s southern and eastern landscape. Furthermore, Tinglin Park has a small animal zoo that is either “great for taking photos of wild animals up close” or “depressing for seeing wild animals in grimy and confined living quarters.” Well, you’ll see when you pay a visit.
Yangcheng Lake is not only a fantastic place to dine out on delicious hairy crab, but is also a marvelous destination to shoot amazing photos of natural scenery in the area, as well as the hustle and bustle of buying crabs during peak season in October. When hairy crab fever is in session, you’ll find plenty of locals shopping for the best deals from crab “malls” or merchants on the street, and pulling up in droves to eat at the infamous neon lights-laced block of restaurants that only “awaken” a few months throughout the year. In addition, head towards the actual lake itself on a clear day around sunset and you’re bound to take some awesome photos.
Renmin Road is a great place to shoot action shots of local people; after all, you’ve got boatloads of families, couples, men, women, children, teens, elderly, rich, and poor, strolling through the densely crowded shopping street at any given time. Heck, you may even spot a foreigner or two in the midst of the chaos! Furthermore, you can also take photos from the bridge cross over the Loujiang River. The bridge lights up at night to create a splendid scene, which is why it is often used as advertisements for the city.
2015’s Mid-Autumn Lantern Festival was held at Huiju Temple, and if you attended the event, you had the chance to view the temple in all its glory during the late evening or night. But have you visited the temple during the day? In the afternoon, for instance, Huiji Temple is brimming with a wide array of colorful and decorative statues, paintings, wall carvings, temples, and shrines that are guaranteed to look great on film. If you’re an avid photographer, Huiju Temple is one of the best places in Kunshan to capture elements of religious and traditional life in China.
Kunshan Citizen’s Park is another excellent place to snap pictures of locals in action, especially during the summer. From June to August, it seems like literally every resident in the city is participating in some type of activity at the park, whether its jogging, square dancing, playing soccer or badminton, practicing Tai-chi, you name it. If you’re not into taking photos, consider visiting the site itself in the summertime just to get a peak at all the action.
ANY ANCIENT WATER TOWN
Kunshan is home to 3 popular ancient water towns, including Zhouzuang Ancient Water Town, Jinxi Ancient Water Town, and Qiandeng Ancient Water Town. Each is overflowing with the perfect settings for capturing the finest shots of traditional Chinese culture, history, and architecture. In fact, this past year, the Kunshan Tourism Resort even hosted a photography contest for the best photo taken at one of the ancient towns. If you haven’t had a chance to check out an old town, I suggest head to Zhouzhuang or Jinxi first. In addition, the towns can easily be accessed by way of public bus from Kunshan South Station.
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THINGS TO DO