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The Lingering Garden

The Lingering Garden

The Lingering Garden, about 3km west of city center, is one of the largest gardens in Suzhou. It was listed from the first as cultural relics of national importance in 1961.

 

The garden was built in the 21st year of the reign of Wanli (1583 A.D.) by Xu Taishi, a bureaucrat, as his private garden-residence and named East Garden. According to the famous writer Yuan Hongdao (1568 - 1610) in his "A Record of Gardens", the East Garden at that time "has magnificent multi-storey houses in the front and halls in the rear, and a range of awe-inspiring stone mountains built by the well-known master Zhou Bingzhong, resembling a long scroll of landscape painting."

 

Later the garden belonged to the Liu family in the 59th year of the reign of Qianlong (1794 A.D.) and was expanded, repaired, and renamed "the Hanbi Villa", while popularly known as "Liu Garden". In the 12th year of the reign of Tongzhi (1873 A.D.), it was purchased, expanded and repaired by the Shengs, who gave it a new name "Lingering Garden ", since "lingering" in Chinese sounds similar to "Liu", the surname of the former owner.


Like many classical Chinese gardens the intention here was to recreate traditional scenes and landscapes in a condensed space, this required clever use of water features, miniature forests, pavilions and in this case a 6.5 metre high man made snow capped peak, hiding and revealing the appropriate views.

 

Admission fee:

Peak season: RMB40

Off season: RMB30

 

How to get:

The garden is about 3km west of the city centre. Tourist bus Y2 goes there from the train station or Renmin Lu.

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