Great Wave Pavilion Garden in Suzhou

The Humble Administrators Garden

The Humble Administrators Garden by scadam526. Sourced via Flickr under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.

Canglang is the oldest existing classical Chinese garden in Suzhou, the original garden dating to the Late Tang Dynasty. In the year 1044s (Northern Song dynasty), the poet Su Shunqin purchased the site and build his gardens here. The layout remains essencially the same as it did in the Song dynasty. The name comes from a poem, Fishermen, by Qu Yuan (ca. 340 BCE-278 BCE) in his book Songs of the South, "If the Canglang River is dirty I wash my muddy feet; If the Canglang River is clean I wash my ribbon." The verse echos Su Shunqing's own life as a office removed from office.

The garden passed through many owner and by 1696 had become neglected and unused. Song Luo, governor of Jiangsu province restored the gardens at this time. The gardens became the property of govenor Tao Shu in 1827 and Zhang Shusheng in 1873. The garden was opened to the public in 1955 and in 2000 was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List along with several other gardens in Suzhou.

The garden, which covers some 1.6 ha, is divided into two main parts. The garden is sited on a branch of the Fengxi Stream which forms a lotus pond. The garden has 108 leaky windows each one with a unique design.

Map showing location of Great Wave Pavilion Garden in Suzhou

Above: Location of Great Wave Pavilion Garden in Suzhou in Suzhou, Jiangsu, China