The Beijing Grand View Garden is one of the most loved tourist destinations in China. Known in itself as a masterpiece, the garden was created based on a Chinese novel called “The Dream of the Red Mansions”. Combining natural beauty and architectural grandeur, it is art that has come to life.
Address: No. 12 Nan Cai Yuan Street, Xuanwu District, Beijing, China
Ticket price: CNY 40
Opening hours: 8:30-17:00
What You’ll See There
The Beijing Grand View Garden is located in the southwest corner of Beijing. It lies to the southwest of Tian’anmen Square. The garden, which spans 125,000 square meters, is made up of a large greenery garden and several pavilions, halls, and temples scattered around. All in all, it has twelve scenic spots and forty attractions.
Although it is constructed using contemporary Ming and Qing styles, the novel from which it is based was written in the eighteenth century. What is most amazing about the garden is that it not only showcases the beauty of nature and China’s traditional architecture; it is also a fascinating and exact rendition of the garden described in the novel. Thus, it can also be considered as a testament to China’s keen attention to details and admirable ability for creation.
Here are the best parts of the garden and what you will see there.
Enjoyment Red Hall
Fragrant Rice Village
Fragrant Lotus Pavilion
Reed Snow Temple
Green Hill Garden
Take time to explore the beautiful and colorful paintings displayed in the Enjoyment Red Hall where the main character in the novel lived, then go and embrace the quiet at the Xiaoxiang Hall. Stop by the Bamboo Lodge too and see for yourself the surroundings where the unfortunate Lin Daiyu, the story’s heroine, lived. The most interesting part of the garden, however, is the Xingqinxing Hall, where some performances are held regularly for the entertainment of tourists.
The novel “The Dream of the Red Mansions” was written by Cao Xuequin during the Qing Dynasty. It is considered as one of the four great classics of Chinese literature. In the novel, the Grand View Garden was the residence of the Jia family, who was very wealthy. The novel’s main character is Baoyu, who lives in the home together with his relatives, including his two cousins. A tragic love affair among the three characters is reminiscent of the Shakespearean novel Romeo and Juliet.
If you are a fan of Romeo and Juliet, it would be delightful to familiarize yourself in a Chinese version of it. If you have read the book, it would be an exhilarating experience to immerse yourself in an actual version of the Grand View Garden.
How to Get There
To get to the garden, take City Bus Routes no. 59, 717, 122, 474, 56, or 423. You can also take a cab. If you do not know Chinese, you can print out a bilingual note to give to the cab driver.
Or simply print the following Chinese information and show it to a taxi driver:
请带我去大观园，谢谢！(Please bring me to the Grand View Garden, thanks.)
Best Time to Visit
The best time to visit the Beijing Grand View Garden is during the Spring Festival of each year. During this time, a gala party is held there to welcome the Lunar New Year. If you visit at this time, you will also catch the grand ceremony of Lady Jia, the Imperial Concubine Visiting Her Relatives Back Home.
Travel Tips and Reminders
The Beijing Grand View Garden is not a place for those in a rush. The garden is both beautiful and serene, and seems to invite visitors to stay awhile. So if you are planning to visit the garden, allot sufficient time to lounge around the lush, beautifully landscaped grounds. This is the best way to experience the famed garden. If you stay long enough, you might even witness some traditional ceremonies as these are sometimes performed in the garden. This can make your visit even more fascinating and memorable.