On an early and radiant Saturday morning, study away and portal students boarded the NYU shuttle bus heading to Suzhou. The weather couldn’t be better–warm sunshine and an almost cloudless sky. Two sleepy hours later, they arrived at their first stop: Tiger Hill. The Tiger Hill Pagoda greeted the students upon their arrival. The pagoda, similar to the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa, inclines slightly to the north. Yan Laoshi, a native of Suzhou, graciously accompanied the group and shared captivating stories and unique facts. The students were able to immerse themselves in the culture and landscape of Suzhou. A visit to a traditional Suzhou restaurant followed and it wouldn’t be complete without the rotating turntable that sits on top of the table. This turntable spins, allowing everyone to sample all of the dishes on the table. The students drank plum juice and ate red bean soup with glutinous rice. Their trip continued to the wonderful Lingering Garden which is split into four sections, encompassing a serene tranquil pond. The afternoon was spent leisurely strolling around the paths and hearing more tales from Yan Laoshi. As the sun began to set, the students traveled to their final destination: Pingjiang Street, a historic street filled with vibrant tapestry and lights. The students roamed and explored the street vendors and local shops, and once they were done eating yummy snacks, they boarded the shuttle back home.