Suzhou's traditional gardens are often frequented by tourists in winter to appreciate wintersweet, a flower referred to as one of "Three Friends of Winter" by Chinese people for its ability to endure the cold of winter.
Suzhou also boasts vast expanses of breathtaking plum blossoms in its suburbs.
Plum trees awake Suzhou’s winter with a few blooming flowers. [Photo/visitsz.com]
Linwu Mountain at Xishan Island
Suzhou's Xishan Island began to plant plum trees in the Tang Dynasty (AD 618-907), and now it offers the treat on plum blossoms every year. Centered with Linwu Mountain, the island boasts a forest of plum trees stretching 233.33 hectares (5,000 mu), a famous site for plum appreciation nationwide.
When plum blossoms are in bloom, visitors can not only appreciate different varieties of plum blossoms, but can also join in a lucky draw using their entrance tickets.
Ticket: 50 yuan ($7.2) each
Public Transportation: Bus No. 583, 69, 691, and then get off at Linwu Cave Station
|Buds of wintersweet at Linwu Mountain on Xishan Island [Photo/visitsz.com]|
Hornsey Sea (Xiangxuehai)
Hornsey Sea, or the sea of fragrant snow, at Guangfu town in Suzhou is known for having over 30 miles of plum blossoms.
Every year when the plum blossoms bloom, the area attracts many visitors with a series of activities, including a plum blossom bonsai exhibition, a blessing ceremony, lantern riddle games, plum tree photography and an on-the-spot handicraft creation show.
The 2017 plum blossom festival is to be held in Guangfu Town from late January to early March when plum trees will be in full blossom. The area features rare varieties of plum trees including several trees over 100 years old.
Address: Dengwei Mountain at Guangfu town
Public Transportation: Bus No. 63, 64, 65
Plum trees are in full blossom on Dengwei Mountain in Guangfu Town in 2016. [Photo/visitsz.com]