Foraminifera Sculpture Park

Foraminifera Sculpture Park, Zhongshan: Address, Foraminifera Sculpture Park Review: 5/5

Foraminifera Sculpture Park

Foraminifera Sculpture Park
5
Parks • Other Nature & Parks • Gardens • Geologic Formations
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Suggested duration
1-2 hours
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The area
Address
Xiaolanghuan Park, Sanxiang Town, Zhongshan 528400 China

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Eudyptes
Townsville, Australia28 contributions
Foraminifera Sculpture Park
Mar 2015 • Solo
This geological sculpture park is located in Sanxiang Township, Zhongshan City, Guangdong Province, China (adjacent to Xiao Lang Huan Park; major intersection is Xiaolang Ring Rd and Pingxing Rd). The park offers geology enthusiasts a self-guided walk through a scenic park/garden that contains approximately 114 foraminifera sculptures, greatly exaggerated in scale and carved in impressive detail out of marble, granite, and sandstone. Each sculpture bears a plaque that offers information in Chinese and English, including: Latin name, magnification, locality where found, and depth in the water column.

So what the heck is a foraminifera and why should you care? Foraminifera (forams, for short) are aquatic (mostly marine), shelled microorganisms that are alive in modern times AND have an extensive fossil record that dates back to the Cambrian geologic period. They live in the water column and when they die their tiny shells sink to the bottom of the sea where they become part of the sediment and eventually a rock. There are over 10,000 known species of extant and extinct foraminifera. Forams evolved rapidly and produced shells with diverse patterns and shapes; these features, plus their abundance and wide distribution make them excellent index fossils (markers of a specific interval in geologic time). And honestly, their interesting microscopic morphologies make for some extraordinary human-sized sculptures!

There is a small museum next to the park where you can learn about foraminifera and the remarkable woman, Dr. Zheng Shouyi, whose skilfully produced miniature models inspired the creation of the sculpture park. The museum staff are eager to show visitors around. There is some English narration on signage in the museum and sculpture park, but if you can communicate in Chinese you will get a lot more out of the visit. There is also a cafe on site called the Foraminifera Cafe; a cute paleontological riff on Starbucks.

In terms of getting there, the park is located about 40 minutes (driving) northwest of the Gongbei border crossing (China/Macau) in Zhuhai City, OR about 40 minutes (driving) southwest of the Zhongshan North bullet train station.
Written March 23, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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