Tongli Town
Tongli Town
4.5
7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Monday
7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Tuesday
7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Wednesday
7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Thursday
7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Friday
7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Saturday
7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Sunday
7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Top ways to experience Tongli Town
See what travellers are saying
  • Martin A
    Suzhou, China3,120 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Tongli May Be The Best Ancient Canal City In the Province!
    Now that I've been to several other famous ancient canal towns, or cities, I can compare Tongli to Lili, Xitang, and so on, and I can assure you it's still the best in the province. Xitang is in the next province, not far away, and it's bigger but not as well known. Tongli had lotus flowers for sale, 10 rmb each, or about 2 bucks, and hand-made decorative umbrellas that are also functional. The 20 minutes boat road on the canal system is beautiful and relaxing. There's a very charming boutique hotel in the middle, beside Selecto Coffee, and here's the surprising news: it isn't as crowded in the summer as at some other times!
    Visited July 2023
    Written 20 July 2023
  • Kevin F
    Singapore, Singapore13 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Access to Tongli and homesteads
    Tongli at Suzhou is a nice ancient water town for relaxation and leisure. There are a lot of homesteads to be selected and stay for couple of nights. Most of the homestead are comfortable, clean and located within the scenic areas. It is best to have WeChat apps for easy communication and directions with the owners if you intend to stay in these homesteads. Tongli has a lot of cafes, local style restaurants and convenient shops to choose from. It is no worry about the amenities and foods. You may walk along the canals and bridges to enjoy the ambiance of water town. You may take the boat ride and visit few Suzhou style gardens especially the "Retreat & Reflection Garden." The access is easy. Take Metro Line 4 at Suzhou Railway Station to Tongil station, and take public bus of 725 outside the exit to South Gate of tourist centre of Tongli Scenic Areas, (only $2 RMB bus fare) It is also quite convenient to visit Zhouzhuang Water Town (better scenes) by taxi which will cost about $50 RMB one way.
    Visited October 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written 13 November 2023
  • Ad
    Malaysia14 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great place to visit close to Suzhou
    I visited right after the holiday season and it was pretty quiet. Highly recommended to see the ancient buildings and beautiful canals. Getting here is also easy: take a metro to Tongli station and then head out at Exit 9, then take the ART to Tongliguzhen station (basically the end station). The ART requires you to register for the electronic transport card on Wechat or Alipay. The Water Town itself has an extrance fee to 100 Yuan, but that's only at the south entrance. The ART will take you to the north entrance and I don't recall seeing any ticket counters. Regardless, it's an actual village so there are numerous other quiet entrances that you can enter for free (check your maps). Also, the south ticket counter closes at 5pm, after which it's also free to enter. The ticket ladies and security guys actually encourage you to wait till 5pm if you happen to be there at around 4pm. If you want to take a private car to the town from the metro station, pay no more than 5 to 10 Yuan. They wait outside the metro trying to pry you away from the ART.
    Visited May 2024
    Travelled solo
    Written 5 May 2024
  • Orator11
    Singapore, Singapore7,450 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Definitely Worth A Visit
    A great place to visit as it has over a thousand years of history, and is definitely not as crowded as the other watertowns like Zhou Zhuang in the area. We went on a Wednesday morning. There are souvenir shops, of course, and modern cafes, but this town is essentially still lived in by laround 55,000 ocals, so you can see how they live daily lives. They are quite friendly and happy to chat. There are also 7 points of interests, including the tower in the gardens, as well as an old orchestra that plays tradtional music. Getting here was easy - we took the Metro line 4 all the way to the end from Suzhou, and the journey took about an hour. There is then an electric tram that is currently free as it is on trial - you do need to use your Shanghai/Suzhou metro card to tap in and out though. Entry tickets to the town costs 100 rmb each, which you can buy at the tourist office. The town is charming and you can wander around on your own, or hire one of the rickshaws to bring you around for around 15 minutes. Do also make time to go for a boat ride on the lovely canals to see the bridges from a different perspective, which also takes 15 minutes and costs 150 rmb for a maximum of 6 passengers. Look out for the boat with the cormorants, which are used to fish.
    Visited May 2024
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 31 May 2024
  • Fabian B
    Singapore, Singapore158 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Excellent place to spend a good part of the day
    This place is open from 0730 - 1730 hrs, so it's best to go earlier in the day. To get there, you can take the train to Tongli Station (Blue Line 4). Take Exit 10 and there is a bus that will take you to Tongli Ancient Town, Bus number 725, costs RMB 2 per person, can pay in cash if you do not have WeChat Pay set up, but have the exact change as the driver does not carry any cash on him. The entry fee into this place is RMB100, a bit steep but is well worth it if you like visiting historical places. The place is huge though, with many bridges and narrow walkways. I spent about 4hrs here in total. Somewhere along the river, you may come across a booth offering boat rides. Personally, I found it a good experience, the cost is RMB150 for the boat, so try and find a few other tourists to share the cost, up to a max of 6 per boat. The boat ride was a good break to rest my aching feet and brought us through and around the town, lasting about 15 minutes. A few things to note though: 1. Try to pack your own lunch and bring your own water bottle, as like any other tourist place, everything in this town will be priced higher than elsewhere. 2. Wear comfortable shoes as there will be a lot of walking to do in a town where everything is cobblestones and rocks. Best to wear something with ankle support. 3. If you plan on taking the trishaw ride around the town, DO NOT pay the driver upfront. I encountered a young Taiwanese couple who was apparently scammed by the driver who took off after dumping them at the first attraction 20m down the road.
    Visited May 2024
    Travelled solo
    Written 2 June 2024
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

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Fabian B
Singapore, Singapore158 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Solo
This place is open from 0730 - 1730 hrs, so it's best to go earlier in the day. To get there, you can take the train to Tongli Station (Blue Line 4). Take Exit 10 and there is a bus that will take you to Tongli Ancient Town, Bus number 725, costs RMB 2 per person, can pay in cash if you do not have WeChat Pay set up, but have the exact change as the driver does not carry any cash on him.

The entry fee into this place is RMB100, a bit steep but is well worth it if you like visiting historical places. The place is huge though, with many bridges and narrow walkways. I spent about 4hrs here in total.

Somewhere along the river, you may come across a booth offering boat rides. Personally, I found it a good experience, the cost is RMB150 for the boat, so try and find a few other tourists to share the cost, up to a max of 6 per boat. The boat ride was a good break to rest my aching feet and brought us through and around the town, lasting about 15 minutes.

A few things to note though:
1. Try to pack your own lunch and bring your own water bottle, as like any other tourist place, everything in this town will be priced higher than elsewhere.
2. Wear comfortable shoes as there will be a lot of walking to do in a town where everything is cobblestones and rocks. Best to wear something with ankle support.
3. If you plan on taking the trishaw ride around the town, DO NOT pay the driver upfront. I encountered a young Taiwanese couple who was apparently scammed by the driver who took off after dumping them at the first attraction 20m down the road.
Written 2 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Orator11
Singapore, Singapore7,450 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Couples
A great place to visit as it has over a thousand years of history, and is definitely not as crowded as the other watertowns like Zhou Zhuang in the area. We went on a Wednesday morning.

There are souvenir shops, of course, and modern cafes, but this town is essentially still lived in by laround 55,000 ocals, so you can see how they live daily lives. They are quite friendly and happy to chat. There are also 7 points of interests, including the tower in the gardens, as well as an old orchestra that plays tradtional music.

Getting here was easy - we took the Metro line 4 all the way to the end from Suzhou, and the journey took about an hour. There is then an electric tram that is currently free as it is on trial - you do need to use your Shanghai/Suzhou metro card to tap in and out though.

Entry tickets to the town costs 100 rmb each, which you can buy at the tourist office.

The town is charming and you can wander around on your own, or hire one of the rickshaws to bring you around for around 15 minutes. Do also make time to go for a boat ride on the lovely canals to see the bridges from a different perspective, which also takes 15 minutes and costs 150 rmb for a maximum of 6 passengers. Look out for the boat with the cormorants, which are used to fish.
Written 1 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ad
Malaysia14 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Solo
I visited right after the holiday season and it was pretty quiet. Highly recommended to see the ancient buildings and beautiful canals. Getting here is also easy: take a metro to Tongli station and then head out at Exit 9, then take the ART to Tongliguzhen station (basically the end station). The ART requires you to register for the electronic transport card on Wechat or Alipay. The Water Town itself has an extrance fee to 100 Yuan, but that's only at the south entrance. The ART will take you to the north entrance and I don't recall seeing any ticket counters. Regardless, it's an actual village so there are numerous other quiet entrances that you can enter for free (check your maps). Also, the south ticket counter closes at 5pm, after which it's also free to enter. The ticket ladies and security guys actually encourage you to wait till 5pm if you happen to be there at around 4pm. If you want to take a private car to the town from the metro station, pay no more than 5 to 10 Yuan. They wait outside the metro trying to pry you away from the ART.
Written 5 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ivy J
Singapore, Singapore52 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2023 • Friends
Not for city dweller. Nothing much to see except for the old ancient building, which are not well-maintained except for the girls’ school which was nicely restored..
we found a nice coffee joint to rest our feet - villa one
宜岚 coffee joint
Written 8 December 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Kevin F
Singapore, Singapore13 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Solo
Tongli at Suzhou is a nice ancient water town for relaxation and leisure. There are a lot of homesteads to be selected and stay for couple of nights. Most of the homestead are comfortable, clean and located within the scenic areas. It is best to have WeChat apps for easy communication and directions with the owners if you intend to stay in these homesteads.
Tongli has a lot of cafes, local style restaurants and convenient shops to choose from. It is no worry about the amenities and foods.
You may walk along the canals and bridges to enjoy the ambiance of water town. You may take the boat ride and visit few Suzhou style gardens especially the "Retreat & Reflection Garden."
The access is easy. Take Metro Line 4 at Suzhou Railway Station to Tongil station, and take public bus of 725 outside the exit to South Gate of tourist centre of Tongli Scenic Areas, (only $2 RMB bus fare)
It is also quite convenient to visit Zhouzhuang Water Town (better scenes) by taxi which will cost about $50 RMB one way.
Written 14 November 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Martin A
Suzhou, China3,120 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2023
Now that I've been to several other famous ancient canal towns, or cities, I can compare Tongli to Lili, Xitang, and so on, and I can assure you it's still the best in the province. Xitang is in the next province, not far away, and it's bigger but not as well known. Tongli had lotus flowers for sale, 10 rmb each, or about 2 bucks, and hand-made decorative umbrellas that are also functional. The 20 minutes boat road on the canal system is beautiful and relaxing. There's a very charming boutique hotel in the middle, beside Selecto Coffee, and here's the surprising news: it isn't as crowded in the summer as at some other times!
Written 21 July 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ailton007
Seattle, WA1,172 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2023 • Couples
We took a 9 am train on a Saturday from Shanghai to Suzhou, takes 25 min and then roughly an hour by taxi or subway to get to Tongli Watertown entrance. There is also a few gardens which together with the bigger ones in Suzhou belong to the UNESCO World heritage ensemble. Watertown is beautiful, plan for 4 hours which is plenty of time to take pics, have a nice lunch in one of the many cafes and restaurants or just enjoy the scenery.
Written 26 February 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Martin A
Suzhou, China3,120 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2022
Between Shanghai and Suzhou, a short train ride from Suzhou, Tongli Ancient Town is like a Chinatown inside a Chinese city, and it's like stepping back into the past, around a thousand years, without losing some modern technology. Take your camera and take thousands of pictures without worrying whether or not they will turn out to be fantastic. A photogenic water town, without question. It's the reason Suzhou is called the Venice of China and Venice should be called the Suzhou of Europe. Half a day, minimum, is needed. It's a cool place on a hot day and a warm place in winter. Take a gondola ride down a canal. Don't miss the secret garden!
Written 9 October 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Honor628
43 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2022 • Friends
Unfortunately we visited on one of the hottest days of the year so far. The people were welcoming and there was a lot of information about the sights. I hope to return in the spring when the weather and flowers will be at their best.
Written 6 July 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

KodoDrummer
Buenos Aires, Argentina70,534 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2021
This was a town of the Wu clan. It is an exceptionally beautiful area when lit up an night. We had an enjoyable evening walking the area and shopping.
Written 22 August 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Tongli Town - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024) - Tripadvisor

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