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The garden near the scenic Lotus in the Breeze at the Crooked Courtyard has beautiful views combining natural landscape and historical architecture. It has preserved in its original form, without expansion or renovation.
Among all the jiangnan (regions south of the lower reaches of Yangtze River) gardens, the one here - Guo's Garden - is most representative of a private garden in Hangzhou.
It was built during the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) by a silk merchant called Song Duanfu. Then Guo Shilin from Fenyang, Shanxi Province, bought the garden residence and gave it his family name.
Covering almost 10,000 square meters, the garden has a pavilion in the center and is divided into two parts - Jingbiju and Jingkaitian. The first means "house of tranquility" and the second "mirror-like pond area."
Jingbiju was where guests were entertained, while Jingkaitian was for relaxation.
Since ancient Chinese people believed that water brought life and vigor, the garden contains a large pond covering half of the total area.
It was a place to refresh and meditate, and visitors can still walk around the pond and enjoy the tranquil atmosphere.
Though not as magnificent as royal gardens, Guo's Garden is still exquisite and elegant. It is meticulously arranged, so that the stones and rock formations are in harmony with the pond.
Admission: 30 yuan (US$4.3)