Wuxi is a city crisscrossed by many canals, most built during the Ming Dynasty, and even a more recent one built after 1949. Emperor Qin built the first canal 2,000 years ago to link northern China to its southern part. Known as the Grand or Imperial Canal the 1,720 mile waterway from Beijing to Hangzou is reputedly the world’s oldest and longest and passes through many cities including a 14.6 km very scenic stretch that runs through Wuxi starting from the south gate of the old city to the north gate, bisecting the city. The canal was considered Wuxi’s cultural lifeline. It linked the city with the outside world for centuries. Visitors privileged to take a trip on the canal will be taken back in time when most of the commerce in the area took place on this canal and now old houses looming on the sides and ancient bridges arching overhead are what remain of the past. One of these typical Chinese bridges, the subject of many paintings and postcards and one in a reasonable state of preservation is the 16th century Qingming Bridge built during the Ming Dynasty. Parts of the canal are presently under a major renovation programme to preserve the ancient buildings lining the banks. While several spanking new modern developments are visible all along the canal, some of the more interesting may be the older attractions. These include the 7 storied 10th century Miaoguang pagoda standing next to the Nanchan Buddhist Monastery built during the Tang Dynasty, Longguang pagoda a 105 foot brick and wood structure built during the Ming Dynasty, the second highest of its kind in China, and the many examples of houses built during the Ming and Qing Dynasties down Yaochewan, Sibaoqiao and Xiaoluo lanes and the narrow cobblestone lanes of the old town.
While the canal is now one the city’s main tourist attractions, it is still an important trade route clogged at all times with everything from wooden boats carrying local freight to row boats and all kinds of tourist and leisure craft.
Wuxi is said to have been founded 3,000 years ago on the shores of Lake Taihu, the third largest freshwater lake in China and famous for its natural beauty.
In a busy new area of an ancient city, Millennium Wuxi is close to business, transport and commercial hubs of the city and is not far off from its many attractions. It offers a series of spacious, contemporary rooms and suites with facilities and amenities suited to a five star Wuxi hotel. These include a selection of restaurants serving, Chinese, Japanese and Western cuisine, up to date leisure and fitness facilities and elegant spaces to host receptions and business gatherings. As a key hotel in Wuxi guests are made to feel special and every effort is made to ensure that they have a memorable stay here.