Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sunday, January 30, Nan Lian Garden and Chi Lin Nunnery, Kowloon


Thanks to Lonely Planet online, we found a terrific day trip destination only seven metro stations, and a couple of blocks from our hotel.  It's the combination Nan Lian Gsrden and Chi Lin Nunnery, near the Diamond Hill Metro, on the other side of Hollywood Plaza, in Kowloon.  The Garden, a 3.5 hectare, Tang Dynasty (618-907AD) design, is landscaped with large, unusually smooth sedimentary rocks from Guangxi Province which were first excavated in 1998. Thousands of trees including Buddhist Pine, Cypress, Black Pine, Orange Jasmine, Chinese Hackberry, India Laurel Fig and Elm have been planted, and timber structures in Tang architectural style have been built including the gold-plated Pavilion of Absolute Perfection, terraces, verandas, halls, bridges and black lintel gate at the garden entrance.  

The Chi Lin Nunnery, a 33,000 square meter complex, is the largest wooden structure in the world built without nails.   It contains a nunnery, temple halls, visitor hostels, and a vegeterian restaurant (beneath a waterfall).     We were given an added bonus, as Cheung Pak Yue's Bamboo Carvings were on display.  As no photographs are allowed, you're going to have to take our word that it is truly hard to imagine such intricate and exact etchings and cuts could be done on the surface and depths of bamboo segments.  An art practiced for at leas seven hundred years in China has not diminished in the quality of its products.  Yue's skill, and his accompanying commentary in the titles of his work, provides an interesting insight into the Chinese social and familial worlds of the 1300s.

Tonight, we're going back out for a walk through a night market near our hotel, and we're going to try to catch what we've heard is a spectacular light show at 8pm on the Hong Kong waterfront.  We saw the one at the Eiffel Tower on our trip to France, so we'll let you know if this one tops it.  

To view all of the photos taken today, click on: Nan Lian Garden and Chi Lin Nunnery


1 comment:

Anne and Art said...

Hi guys,
It's so wonderful to view the country through your eyes. Is the food spectacular? New ideas for the pond, Pat? Missing you. Anne