It was on Wednesday, 21 October 2009, when our tour group visited the Lingering Garden which is located at 338 Liuyuan Rd. Suzhou, Jiangsu Province.

Occupying an area of 23,300 sq m (about 5.8 acres), the Lingering Garden was originally a classical private garden and is one of the four most famous gardens in China. It is also well known for the beauty of its magnificent halls, and the various sizes, shapes, and colors of the buildings. In 1997, the garden was recorded on the list of the world heritage by UNESCO. The garden also stores two UNESCO intangible world heritage arts; Pingtan and Guqin music.

With a history of more than 400 years, the Lingering Garden has changed hands several times. Each owner did his best to perfect the garden. It was first built in 1593 during the Ming Dynasty (1368 - 1644) by a retired official named Xu Tai.

Like other famous gardens in China, the Lingering Garden has well laid out natural landscapes within its limited space. The buildings, trees, and flowers blend harmoniously with their surroundings. The garden is separated into the middle, eastern, northern and western parts. The central area is oldest part of the garden. Buildings, the primary feature of any Chinese garden, occupy one third of the total area. A unique feature of the garden is the 700-meter long covered walk which connects them.

The core of the garden is a pond, with hills to the northwest and buildings to the southeast which provides a contrasting effect. The eastern section features mainly halls and courtyards.

In different pavilions located throughout the garden are musicians performing. They add to the already relaxing atmosphere of the garden. They sing and play music continuously. Many different instruments are represented and as you stroll through the garden you are welcomed by the beautiful music. And I have to mention this ... the young Chinese woman who played the Chinese piano was really beautiful. Personally, I think she was the most beautiful creature I saw in China during our tour ... and you can see the close-up photo I took of her in the accompanying slideshow.

I have selected some 47 photographs which I took during our tour of the Lingering Garden and you can view these by clicking on the link shown below:

The Lingering In Garden of Suzhou