Tiger Hill

Suzhou, China

Tiger Hill, a scenic spot in Suzhou, has many attractions within its compound. The visually dominant one is the Tiger Hill Pagoda which has 7 levels and has become tilted with age. It is now referred to as the ‘Leaning Tower of China’. The other sight which garners visitor’s interest is the tomb of King He Lu, who ruled during the Spring and Autumn Period, and three days after his burial a white tiger was seen crouching over the grave, as if protecting it. It is after this legend that the hill is called Tiger Hill.

The area is close to downtown Suzhou and there are plenty of buses that will take you to Huqiu’s (Tiger Hill) both north and south gates. The south gate of the area has more frequent buses then the north gate though. Entrance tickets are RMB80 from April to October (not including June) and RMB60 from November to March (and June). Kids measuring less than 4.6 feet are allowed free entry when going with a senior. Tiger Hill’s timings are from 07:30 to 17:30 and you can get these at the gates, no advance booking required. There is a tram going around the scenic area for an additional charge. You can also get horse rides at Tiger Hill.

Within the scenic spot, there are plenty of things to keep you occupied. The place is dotted with tunnels, hills and sculptures, which make for a pleasant walk. The Tiger Hill Pagoda belongs to the Yunyan Temple and is considered the most dated one in all the city, since it was built in the time of the Northern Song era. It is about 160 feet high, has 7 levels and is eight sided with decorative upturned eaves. But the most distinctive aspect is the 3.59 northwest lean the pagoda has adopted over the years. There is even an exhibit explaining the phenomenon and comparing the tower with the one in Pisa.

The Tomb of King He Lu, built in 496 BC is the oldest relic there and the reason for the name of the area. The king loved collecting rare swords and he would come here to test them out on the rocks. A rock, with a perfect split in the middle is said to have been his handiwork. Unsurprisingly, it is called the Sword Testing Stone! The pond next to the stone, Sword Pool, is where it is suspected that his sword collection was buried along with the kings remains. However, digging wasn’t possible as it aggravated the foundations of the tilting pagoda.

Lu Yu Well is named after a scholar, who did extensive research and penned a book on different types of tea. He spent a lot of time on this hill writing his book and even dug up this well, from which he claimed came the sweetest water.

In Wanjing Villa, the oriental art of making Bonsai is preserved, with hundreds of award-winning bonsai arranged into amazing small gardens that are sure to impress.

Other Attractions In Suzhou