Suzhou Alleyway Food Tour

Mon/Thur/Sat/Sun at 11am, Duration 3.5 hours

$55 USD per adult, $28 USD per child

Approx. 3km walking

The Essentials:

Known as the “Venice of the East,” Suzhou has over 35km of navigable canals and 60 of China’s most well-preserved gardens. On this walking tour, you’ll walk back in time while exploring Suzhou’s residential old-town, explore its lush gardens and monasteries, and discover what locals eat in the city that’s been the center of wealth and culture for 1,000s of years.


Far more than a meal’s worth of food and drinks at 5 sit-down restaurants, plus multiple cultural stops along the way.

Group Size

Small groups of 2-8 people per tour.

Start & End Location

Starts at Beisita Subway Station in Suzhou. Ends 10 minute walk away from Yangyuxiang Subway Station. An email will be sent with meeting location details immediately after booking.

Cancellation Policy

Reservations cancelled 24 hours or more before your tour start time are fully refundable.

Dietary Requirements​

We are happy to welcome vegetarians, but please let us know prior to your tour date as same day requests cannot be guaranteed. This tour is not recommended for gluten free or vegan diets. Please message us prior to booking if you have any questions.

What You'll Do:

Meeting Location:

This tour starts at Beisita Subway Station, located outside of the 800 year old pagoda that stands taller than any other building in Suzhou’s old-town. An email will be sent with meeting location details immediately after booking.

Authentic Morning Noodles

Suzhou locals have a daily morning ritual: drink tea, eat noodles, and listen to opera. This decades-old noodle joint is known for having the best broth in town, along with a huge selection of seasonal condiments served on small plates that lets the eater decide their flavor of the day.

Homemade Silken Tofu

For over 50 years, this family has been serving neighbors fresh silken tofu from their home, hidden deep inside a narrow alleyway – a labor of love that starts every day at 5am. 

Suzhou's Ancient Gardens & Temples

While walking our way through the alleys and canals that crisscross the city, we’ll visit Suzhou’s only Buddhist nunnery and explore a secret Ming-dynasty garden centered around 5 “peaks” and ornamental stones from nearby Taihu lake.

Traditional Old-Suzhou Snacks

Situated just inside the city’s ancient gate, this street used to be the center of business for traders from the “Grand Canal” which connected north and south China. Today, it’s the best place to grab neighborhood snacks like fresh soy milk, local spring rolls, Chinese donuts, and pancake-wrapped dough sticks.

Floating Wontons

Eat at a famous “bubble wonton” joint, frequented by celebrities and neighbors alike, and try these delicately wrapped wontons that are magically filled with air and float atop a bowl of rich broth. You’ve never had anything like it!

Classic Chinese Dessert

End the tour at a dessert shop popular with today’s younger crowd. Try a subtly sweet soup made with slow-cooked red beans topped with chewy glutinous rice balls. 

Plus More Surprises!

* This itinerary is subject to changes and adjustments based on daily vendor operations and availability, but it will always be awesome.

A place so storied, it has two nicknames: "Venice of the East" and "Garden City."

China’s “Grand Canal,” a 1,700km waterway that connects north and south China, lifted Suzhou’s status and opened it up to the rest of the country over 1,500 years ago. It soon became a dreamy utopia where China’s elite would retire, building their own courtyards with private gardens, and sustaining cultural sites with their well-funded pocketbooks. This made Suzhou a far more significant hub than nearby Shanghai and its sleepy fishing village. 

Today, Suzhou remains a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and offers us a glimpse into this ancient capital of wealth and culture. On this tour, we’ll walk through centuries-old gardens and monasteries, try time-tested dishes served in humble eateries, and observe local life – all while winding our way through a network of canals and alleys that make up the heart of the ancient old-town.

Suzhou Alleyway Food Tour Venice of the East

Customer Reviews:

A third of our customers were referred by a previous guest. Were you one of them?!

Frequently Asked Questions:

We are not a tasting tour, we provide much more than a full meal’s worth of food so we recommend you come prepared to eat.

Like all our tours, come hungry, leave stuffed. You’ll be eating about 8 or 9 dishes across 5 food stops. Some courses are quite big, like a whole bowl of noodles, others are smaller – but never too small!  It’s our professional recommendation to have a very very light breakfast before the tour to “open up” your stomach, and please pace yourself throughout the tour.

When booking online, you’ll have the opportunity to let us know if you have any dietary restrictions or special requests. Please use this field to let us know about your requests and we will follow up if there are any problems or questions.

Our tours have been designed to accommodate as many diets as possible, including vegetarian, while still remaining stupid delicious. Just keep in mind that there will be dishes that don’t have a direct substitute – many of the places we visit specialize in one type of cuisine/dish, and therefore don’t always provide a lot of alternatives. Please let us know prior to your tour date as same day requests cannot be guaranteed. This tour is not recommended for gluten free or vegan diets.

This is a walking tour; let’s just get that out of the way. This tour covers about 3 km/ 1.75 miles by foot, so we recommend leaving the heels at home. This distance is split up between 7 stops, so it’s roughly a 5-10 minute walk between each stop and a great chance to digest a bit before the next stop. Exploring by foot is the only way to experience Suzhou’s old-town alleys and canals, and to see local life up close.

Our child pricing is valid for ages 4 through 15. Children ages 3 and under are free.

The tour starts at 11am at Beisita Subway Station, which services line 4 in Suzhou. This is one stop away from the Suzhou Railway Station. You’ll get the exact address, directions, and transportation details immediately after booking.

The tour ends at our last stop, a 10 minute walk to Yangyuxiang Subway Station.

Our minimum is 2 and maximum is 8. It’s small enough to be intimate, but big enough to get away with trying several dishes at each stop. Bottom line is, you’ll follow the guide through a super-local experience and make friends along the way.

This tour lasts about 3.5 hours and ends in a small dessert shop. Most guests choose to continue exploring the area by foot for the rest of the afternoon. 

All of our tours are rain-or-shine, so we suggest you dress for the weather. In rare cases of extreme weather, your guide will cancel the tour and provide a full refund.

Yes we do! If you would like to book a special tour for your organization or group, just contact us and we’ll take care of you.

We have many happy customers who do more than one of our tours across China! We have designed our tours to focus only on food from each city. This means that each dish, story, and vibe is unique to each tour and there aren’t any repeats.

Most people are very surprised how much the cuisine changes as they travel throughout China, and our tours are a good way to discover those differences. We encourage you to pick the tours that best fit your itinerary and we offer a 10% discount if booking more than one tour.

Yes! You’ll get a promo code in your confirmation email that will give you a 10% discount on all future Lost Plate tours. It doesn’t matter if the tour is in the same city or a different city, we want to keep feeding you as long as you let us. Also, children ages 4 through 15 receive a discount on all tours (3 & under are free).

Bookings canceled 24 hours or more before your tour are fully refundable (100% refund). Bookings canceled within 24 hours notice are not refundable. If you would like to reschedule your tour with less than 24 hours notice, we will need to charge 50% of your total since we are unable to fill your spots at short notice.

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Suzhou Alleyway Food Tour

$55 USD/person

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