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Lion Forest Garden, Suzhou

As one of the four famous gardens of the city of Suzhou, Lion Forest Garden was famous for its rocks, assembled in a most fascinating manner and with secluded caves. For this it is known as the "Kingdom of Artificial Hills". Covering 1,152 square meters, it is the largest garden of all in Suzhou.

First constructed in the Yuan Dynasty, The Lion Forest Garden is a prominent garden featuring man-made mountains with various buildings around the lake. The Hall of Peace and Happiness, one of the principal buildings in the garden, is a masterpiece of typical Mandarin ducks' hall at Suzhou. Other buildings include the Pointing at Cypress Trees Hall, the Asking Prunus Mume Pavilion and the Stone Boat, etc.

Another equally colorful common name for Lion Forest Garden is "The Eighteen Scenic Spots of Heaven" because of many rockeries and circuitous pathways which form a veritable maze that the visitor can stroll through. There are many rockeries in Lion Forest Garden such as Hanhui Rockery, Tuyue Rockery, Xuanyu Rockery and Angxia Rockery. But the most famous of them all is of course the Lion Rockery.

The whole structure of Lion Forest Garden shows a flavor of Zen Buddhism and is an apotheosis of the gardens' constructions. A part of the Imperial Summer Resort of the Qing Dynasty in Chengde of Hebei Province was a mimic of Lion Grove Garden. The garden occupies a very important place in history, representing the diversity of cultural and architectural development in Suzhou over the years.

Edited By Elena
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