When you think of China, what comes to mind? The Great Wall? Beijing? The Terracotta Warriors? How about Suzhou?
As both a culture and a travel destination, China is insanely rich in resources, to the extent that UNESCO-recognized gems like Suzhou remain hidden from much of the American market. The 2,500-year-old city of Suzhou was once the largest non-capital city in the world and the center of the Chinese silk trade, just about 60 miles northwest of today’s Shanghai (now connected by bullet train). Its history is vibrant, visual and ever-present. More interestingly, it is a city woven of winding canals and narrow stone streets, threaded by charming bridges and hanging gardens—the roots of its designation as “the Venice of China.”
Look at the picture above. Suzhou Tourism wants to send 18 people there, and you and your choice of plus-one could be two of them!
The sweepstakes (enter here)
The Experience Suzhou: The Venice of China and the City of Scholars sweepstakes will generate nine winners, each of whom will win for him- or herself plus a guest: roundtrip airfare to Suzhou (to Shanghai, then ground transport to Suzhou), accommodations at “one of the city’s top hotels,” three meals daily (authentic Chinese food, if you weren’t aware, is not what passes as Chinese here; it tells the story of its region), experiences at iconic restaurants (including Songhelou, which is almost 300-years-old), visits to the UNESCO World Heritage-crested gardens (like Humble Administrator’s Garden, above), and more. Basically, it’s the best kind of sweepstakes—where most everything is included, as long as you can travel between November 2015 and January 2016.
To enter, you must submit the short entry form on this page. This is one entry. With your form, you can also answer a few Suzhou trivia questions, the right answers to which earn you extra entries. And for even more entries, you can share the campaign on social media.
Tip: Nine classic Suzhou gardens are inscribed as the Classical Gardens of Suzhou UNESCO World Heritage Site—a fact worth an extra entry in the trivia portion of the entry form.
Entries are valid from September 21, 2015 through October 23, 2015 on this page.
After entering, you have options: Read up on Suzhou, Like Suzhou Tourism on Facebook, and anything else. But Suzhou is interesting, so you may well want to pursue more info. The links above can help with that.