Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Hong Kong: Nan Lian Garden

The Nan Lian Garden lies in front of the Chi Lin Nunnery in Kowloon.  For some reason our little guide booklet did not mention the nunnery, so we had no idea it was there.  It was a bonus-though not a full bonus.  Although the garden is open to 9:30 PM, we discovered that the nunnery closed at 4:30-just before we got there.  Sigh.

We were still able to walk in as far as the first courtyard of the nunnery.   It was all extremely beautiful. 

Nan Lian Garden was absolutely full of gorgeous things.  There was a hall full of intricate models of famous Chinese temples and palaces-including Beijing’s Forbidden City. 

The obvious center piece of the garden is the Pavilion of Perfection-a golden pavilion that is perfectly symmetrical.  It lies on a tiny island in a pond, with two red bridges connecting it to the main paths-and, of course, visitors are prohibited from walking over these bridges. 

At the other end of the garden are a few more ponds, one with a vegetarian restaurant in a corner with waterfalls cascading over it to reach the pond.   A tea house was just adjacent to the other pond-the largest of the three ponds. 

In another little building, pieces of petrified wood were on display.  Just outside that building was a small garden of bonsai trees. 

By the time we left, dusk was rapidly approaching.  Fortunately our next destination-Kowloon Walled City Park-was open until the late evening.  

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