Suzhou and ZhouZhuang cities are about 1.5 hour by bus, west from Shanghai. This 1-day combo trip is a good alternative to the HangZhou West lake tour which is about 2.5 hours by bus. Suzhou is known for its beautiful gardens, beautiful girls and silk factories. A sample of a smaller scale of those gardens can be found in Shanghai Old Town (Yuyuan garden). These gardens are usually build and own by wealthy families and emperors hundreds of years ago. The second and nearby romantic city ZhouZhuang is sometimes referred as the Venice of the East. A water tour with a lady rowing and singing is no less romantic than a Gondola tour in Venice. High rises in Shanghai are generally impressive and a demonstration of China economic boom of the last few decades, but the long chinese history are in the older towns like those two. The trip can be either arranged with the Hotel recommended guided tour or with a private tour guide. Verify if the tour guide is fluent in English or your language.