This garden is an excellent point of reference for the mix that is Sydney and if you're a gardener, not to be missed. Built for the 1988 Bicentennial, it was a gift by businessman of Chinese background to their fellow citizens, a wonderful gesture. Much of the work was carried out by craftsmen from China. Being in the heart of a huge city, you'd expect noise and chaos. However, this is a place of beauty and peace. It doesn't take all that long to walk around the lake and garden but it would be to miss the point if that's all you do. There are many places to sit, observe and think. The garden has been built with all the traditions of Chinese landscaping present. The seas, mountains, rivers, islands are all there as well as a picturesque cascade. Most of the traditional plants have been included and I assume those missing are only because of climate restrictions. The lake is, as usual, the centre piece and it has been beautifully constructed and surrounded by many traditional built features; dragon wall, moongate, pavilions, bridges and the zig-zag bridge necessary to stop evil spirits. There are many koi, some are particularly beautiful. The stand of black bamboo is spectacular. There is a fine display of penjing (bonsai) as well as a cafe. Admission price is really quite reasonable. Before or after, its a quick walk to the rest of the Chinese section of Sydney with its many restaurants. To me, this place gives meaning to the old Chinese saying, "If you want to be happy for an hour, get drunk; if you want to be happy for a month, get married; If you want to be happy forever, build a garden."
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