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Zhujiajiao Water Town

Brief Introduction of Zhujiajiao
Zhujiajiao is one of the most welcomed water towns around Shanghai, a famous historical town located south of the Yangyze River. Zhujiajiao has a long history which date back to 1700 years ago, known as the Venice of Shanghai and Shanghai suburb Hollywood. It takes one hour from Shanghai city center, it is a good place to do a day trip if you have spare time in Shanghai. From a visitor’s perspective, Zhujiajiao can be roughly split into three zones. The north, the central street and bridge, and the west. If you tried of morden place and fast-speed life of Shanghai, highly recommend to take a visit Zhujiajiao Water Town.

History of Zhujiajiao Water Town
According to historical records, the history of Zhujiajiao can be traced back to 7000 years ago.There are signs of human activities in Neolithic age, spring and Autumn period and Warring States period at the bottom of Dianshan Lake nearby. During the Song and Yuan Dynasties, the rudiment of Zhujiajiao Town gradually formed, also known as Zhujiacun Village. In 1612 AD, due to the convenience of water transportation and more frequent commercial exchanges, Zhujiajiao gradually became a big town. Zhujiacun village was renamed Zhuli and also known as Pearl Stream, commonly known as "Jiao Li". In 1991, Zhujiajiao Town was completed and officially became a subsidiary town of Shanghai.

Top Things to Do in Zhujiajiao
Kezhi Garden
Kezhi Garden is located on the Xinjing Street, the name Kezhi is made up of the characters ? (kè) which means "to learn" and ? (zhí) which means "to plant". It is a classic Chinese garden in Zhujiajiao water Town and It consists of three parts - the main hall, the garden and an artificial hill area. The most iconic landmark of the gardens is a five story building with a pavilion on its roof - the tallest structure in old Zhujiajiao. The history of this garden dates back to 1912, when Ma Wenqing built it, drawing inspiration from a mixture of Chinese and European influences.


Qing Dynasty Post Office
It is the well-preserved Qing post office in China, where you can feel the history of Chins post and deblivery industry. When you visit here, you'll find antique post cards of old Shanghai and letters written on bamboo.


The Town God Temple
It is a Daoist temple dedicated to Guanyin, the goddess of mercy. Authentic worship still goes on, but like most temples in tourist destinations, it's pretty exploited. It's located on the middle of Caohe Street, in front of the Qijin bridge.


Fangsheng Bridge
The most iconic bridge is the 70-meter long Fangsheng bridge. Resting on 5 symmetric arches, the height of the bridge peaks at 5.8 meters. It was originally built by the monk Xingchao of Cimen Temple in 1571, and then rebuilt in 1812. The central arch is decorated with a stone relief of eight dragons surrounding a pearl, and the pillars at the ends are sculpted into lions. It's the largest stone arch bridge in Zhujiajiao and populated by merchants who want to sell you everything from live fish to batteries for your camera. And have some small change ready for the beggars.


Tourist Boat Route & Price
There are seven docks where you can take the traditional boat in Zhujiajiao Water Town, Town God Temple Dock, Yuanjin Temple Dock, Kezhi Garden Dock, Fengsheng Bridge Dock, Handalong Sauce and Pickles Dock, Zhongguanyin Bridge Dock, Qing Imperial Post Dock. The price for the boat ride are Short Route:CNY80 & Long Route:CNY150, Maximum:6 people.

What to Eat in Zhujiajiao Water Town
Sweet Lotus Root
Sweet lotus root is a famous food in Zhujiajiao, it is a unique Chinese dessert in Jiangnan traditional dishes. It enjoys a reputation for its sweet, crisp and osmanthus aroma.

Braised pork
The pork wrapped in bamboo leaves and braised in dark sauce. It cost CNY5 for each. The pork belly serves hot and tastes pretty good as it has the fragrance from the dumpling leaves. Highly recommended as it is the “signature snacks” in Zhujiajiao.

Apo Zongzi
Apo Zongzi, one of the popular food in Zhujiajiao Water Town, you will see a long line in front of the shop to buy the Zongzi. Actually, Zongzi is a traditional food of the Dragon Boat Festival. Sticky rice bundles are made from sticky or glutinous rice and a filling, which is kneaded in. They are then wrapped in bamboo leaves in pillow or triangular-based pyramid shapes, and tied with plant stems.

Basic Information
Location: Zhujiajiao Town, Qingpu District, Shanghai
Entrance fee: No need the ticket to enter the town; The museum & small scenic spots are needed, the details as below:
RMB30 for four scenic spots (including Tongtianhe Medicine Shop, Qing Dynasty Post Office, Y-Art Gallery, and Kezhi Garden); RMB60 for eight scenic spots (including Y-Art Gallery, Tongtianhe Medicine Shop, Qing Dynasty Post Office, City God Temple, Yuanjin Meditation Room, Handwork Exhibition Hall, Quanhua Art Hall and Kezhi Garden);
Opening hours: All day, 08:30am-16:30am for the scenic spots

Time for visiting: 3-4 hours

How to get to Zhujiajiao from Shanghai
1) Take tourism bus at Shanghai Stadium (Gate 5) or Hongkou Soccer Stadium to Zhujiajiao in the morning.
2) Take Huzhu (Shanghai-Zhujiajiao) Special Line at Laochengdu Road Yan'an Road and get off at Zhujiajiao Station. The bus runs between 7:00 and 17:45 to Zhujiajiao every 10 minutes, and returns from 5:50 to 17:15.
3) Take Huzhu Express Line at People's Square Pu'an Road Jinling Road and arrive in Zhujiajiao one hour later. There is a bus every half an hour.
4) You can take metro Line17 from Shanghai city center to reach Zhujiajiao Water Town, the station is 1.5km away from ancient city. 

Tour Zhujiajiao Water Town with Shanghai Private Tour
We will provide a private & spacious car and a local professional tour guide with over 5 years guiding experience only work for you or your group. You will be escorted during your tour. Transport, ticket, and dining (At some local restaurants popular with locals) all we will arrange for you according your requirements. Please check our most popular Shanghai Tours including Zhujiajiao Water Town as below: 

Are the above sample tour programs not suitable for you? We have more Shanghai tours. Our tours can be tailor-made based on your requirements and budget to create unique Shanghai experiences that allow you to interact with the local people and culture. Our enthusiastic tour expert will promptly reply you in details within 24 hours.

Mosted Asked Questions about Zhujiajiao Water Town

1. Is the Zhujiajiao Water Town worth visiting?

It is one of the most popular and closest water towns near Shanghai. Zhujiajiao Water Town is about 50 km away from Shanghai downtown. If your time is limited, it would be the best option to get a feel of such ancient towns. Similar to Venice in Italy, there are many well preserved bridges and boat ride is available.

2. What to do in Zhujiajiao Water Town?

Zhujiajiao is one of six famous water towns nearest to Shanghai. If you plan to go to Zhujiajiao  on your own or book a Zhujiajiao Water Town Tour, you can walk along the North Street to visit the best preserved ancient street and some ancient building. Then, pay a visit to the Post Office which date back to Qing Dynasty and standing on the Fengsheng Bridge to take some good photos of Water Town. Have a small gondola crusie in the town, and are a nice way to get a view of the town from the water. 

3. How to get to Zhujiajiao Water Town from Shanghai

?Travelers can take Shanghai-Zhujiajiao Special Line Bus from Shanghai West Bus Station to get to Zhujiajiao Water Town.
?Take Shangzhu Line at Shanghai South Railway Station to Qingpu Bus Station first. Then there is a bus every 10 minutes to Zhujiajiao Ancient Town.
?If you want the most comfortable way, you can choose to let your hotel or travel agency rent a car for you.

4. What can I see in Zhujiajiao Water Town?

1). North Street: About a kilometer long, Bei Dajie (North Street) is the main thoroughfare in old Zhujiajiao. Along the street lines with many old buildings, many of which has a history of hundred years. It feels leisure for a nice stroll.
2). Shanghai Handicraft Exhibition Hall: Integrated with the classical masters of craftsmen from all districts of Shanghai, Zhujiajiao is also the flagshop of all artistic shops on the North Street.
3). Kezhi Gardens: Built in 1912, the owner (Ma Wenqing) spent 300,000 taels of silver (equivalent to 12000 kg of silver) and 15 years in building the garden. The architecture in the garden is a combination of the Chinese traditional and the Western styles, rarely found in the country. It consists of three parts - the main hall, the garden and an artificial hill area. The most iconic landmark of the garden is a five story building with a pavilion on its roof, which is the tallest building in old Zhujiajiao.
4).Yuan Jin Buddhist Temple: Originally built in 1341, it is a Buddhist monastery with three main buildings and separate living quarters.
5). Qing Dynasty Post Office: It said to be the best preserved Qing post office in China, and among its exhibits you'll find antique post cards of old Shanghai and letters written on bamboo.

5. Do you have any suggestion for a private guide for a day tour from Shanghai? Do you require a deposit? Do you take credit card?

If you want a private tour from Shanghai to Zhujiajiao, you can book the tour with us by email. For the confirmation of the tour, we require 20% of the total payment and the balance you can pay our guide in cash on the day.

6. How far is it from Shanghai Hongqiao Airport (SHA) to Zhujiajiao?

The distance between Shanghai Hongqiao Airport (SHA) and Zhujiajiao is 29 km. The road distance is 36.6 km.

7. How to get to Zhujiajiao water town from People’s Park?

Zhujiajiao water town is 45km away from Shanghai People's Square. You can take Shanghai-Zhujiajiao Express Line Bus at the west of the Concert Hall in Pu'an Road and Yan'an East Road near People's Square. It takes about 1 hour to get to Zhujiajiao ancient town. After getting off the bus, it is Zhujiajiao Zhuxi Garden. 

8. Is it possible to do a half day tour from Shanghai to Zhujiajiao at 1pm or 2pm?

Zhujiajiao water town is open all day, but the scenic spots in the ancient town will be closed at 17:00pm. You will have limited time to visit those scenic spots, but you can enjoy the night view and have dinner there, which is also a great experience.

9. I have a 15hr stopover in Shanghai Pudong Airport in the early morning. Do you think it's possible to have a tour to Zhujiajiao water town and back without rushing?

You have plenty of time, because it normally takes around 4 hours to visit Zhujiajiao water town. If you need one day tour service, we can help you plan a private tour according to your needs, this tour will include private transfer, entrance fee, professional English guide and professional driver.

10. Can I enquire if you have a half day Zhujiajiao trip on 4th Apr. afternoon and send us to People's Square or somewhere central after the tour?

Yes, the Zhujiajiao half day tour with afternoon departure can be arranged. And the drop off location is based on Shanghai downtown area. Your guide can drop you off at People’s Square.

Questions & Answers or Review
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Mr. Wilhelm Reuvers
Reviewed on 30 July 2020

Hi, half day is enough to spend in Zhujiajiao? Is it possible or need more longer time? Basically, which one is better to visit for water town? Zhouzhuang? Tongli? Or zhujiajiao? Because previously i will visit Zhouzhuang water town and Tongli if possible in Suzhou area


Replied:30 July 2020

Hi, generally 3-4 hours are enough to visit Zhujiajiao Water Town, it is also okay for you to spend more time. Zhouzhuang and Tongli are better than Zhujiajiao. But if you travel from Shanghai to one f them, the transfer from Shanghai to Zhujiajiao is easier. In personal, I like Tongli best. But water towns are quite similar to each other. 

Sincerely yours,

Coordination Tourism Manager - China Private Tour
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Skpye. chinaprivatetour
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Ms. Marian McNally
Reviewed on 30 July 2020

One of my favourite places in Shanghai! Definitely worth a visit. The distance is quite far from the city though, about 1.5 hrs by metro from Jing’an Temple station. However, if you are into scenery and would like to take a stroll off a quiet and peaceful town then this place is for you! There are also shops selling local snacks and souvenirs towards the end of the lane which get slightly more crowded. Also a great place to chill as they have cozy cafes facing the river. Will definitely be back again!

Mr. Anthony McNally
Reviewed on 30 July 2020

Amazing scenery and environment for a relaxing stroll. There's a lot of interesting local food stalls you can try. Most stalls that serve the same food or snacks generally offer them at the same price, so don't worry about getting a better deal at another shop. Try the zongzi and lamb skewers!

You'll find many interesting shops as well. It's worth exploring the side streets and residential areas for a more quiet experience.

Reviewed on 24 July 2020

It is quite a lovely place with well preserved buildings and narrow streets. But it can get quite touristy from late mornings onwards, so coming early is ideal. It is only an hour train ride from Shanghai city and takes you another 15mins walk to reach the ancient town. I would recommend spending up to 3-4 hours here to enjoy the atmosphere.

Reviewed on 24 July 2020

Does anyone have up-to-date info on the express bus from/to Shanghai/Zhujiajiao Water Town? I know that you can catch it from/to People's Square. Is there anything special I need to know? Bus tickets: pay on the bus? Plan to visit on a morning end of Aug. Tanks for info

Replied:24 July 2020

Yes, you can take the bus from People's Square Shanghai to Zhujiajiao Water Town. 12 RMB cash for each way. You can pay on the bus. The person collecting money could make change, but its best to bring exact fare just in case. Make sure you have the Chinese word for Zhujiajiao (???) written down, so you can show the bus drivers to make sure you catch the correct bus. It took about an hour to get to Zhujiajiao, and almost two to get back because of heavy traffic. Once you get to the Zhujiajiao bus station, you will want to use a map app to walk to the tourist area. It is a pretty lengthy walk. To get back to People's Square, you will need to make sure you have it written in Chinese as well. Show it to the bus drivers. 

Nick United States
Reviewed on 10 July 2020

Hi I read people mentioning bout the new Line 17 that goes to zhujiajiao. Can i have more info on that. How do i get to Zhujiajiao via subway? Do i go to Hongqiao Raiway Station and transfer from there? Thanks! And what do you think if we want to go to Yu Garden first (around 8AM-11AM) and then to Zhujiajiao (maybe coming bac around 8PM) ? Thanks in advance!

Replied:10 July 2020

Get on line 2 to Hongqiao railway station. Then transfer to line 17. You can get on line 10 from Yu garden station to east Nanjing road station. Then you change to line 2 to Hongaiao railway station. Then you get on line 17 to zhujiajiao. But I suggest you to go zhujiajiao first. Because zhujiajiao is very nice. You should spend more time there. You can see real ancient China. Although Yu garden is not but, it’s is less than zhujiajiao. 

Tom Rufo
Reviewed on 10 July 2020

How much is taxi fare from Shanghai center to zhoujiajiao? And want to know which is better to go on a morning weekend or a weekday? Heard from the reviews that weekend are packed with tourist and locals. Thanks

Replied:10 July 2020

A taxi will be 150RMB to 200RMB depending on traffic and time of day. But the best solution is to go by metro, line 2 or 10 to Hongqiao Station and there to take the line 17.  By bus: Don’t know where you will end up but the direct bus drops you at the terminal, which is a five minute walk from the old town, there are signs for directions. The bus will take about an hour and a half, and allow you to see Shanghai’s suburbs. Public Bus is pretty convenient and fast only at 12RMB one way.  Better to go on a week day, I'm sure it'll be less crowded. It's crowded during weekend or holiday but well organized. 

Reviewed on 10 July 2020

I have heard that places are limiting the number of visitors in order to avoid crowds. Is this true for Zhujiajiao? Should I try to book in advance? If so, how can I do that? Thanks! How easy is it to organise a boat cruise once you arrive at Zhujiajiao Ancient Town. Is as simple as waliking up to one of the operators on the side of the canal? Any info welcomed, thank you.

Replied:10 July 2020

Yes, you need to book the tickets in advance. If you hold foreign passport or you are senior, you can buy the ticket at the ticket office which will be easier. For the boat cruise, simple and easy. There are plenty of boats available, in at least 3 different locations you buy the ticket and get on board. There is a booth where you pay, prices are set. 

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