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The Chinese Garden: A Photo Collage

Elyn lived in China with her family for 30 years, soaking up the history and culture, having fun, and making many friends.

This photo collage showcases various common elements of Chinese garden design.

This photo collage showcases various common elements of Chinese garden design.

What Defines the Style of a Chinese Garden?

This photo collage breaks down many of the elements of a Chinese garden. Though not all classical Chinese gardens have these elements, they are all part of what distinguishes Chinese garden design:

  • moon gates and specially carved windows
  • fascinating stones (often from Lake Tai)
  • a pond or lake (usually with golden carp)
  • rock gardens (sometimes arranged like a maze)
  • rooms with different functions (libraries, rooms for playing music, rooms for studying religion like Taoism or Buddhism, and my favorite: secret caves for special meetings)
  • pavilions (for enjoying nature)
  • pagodas (and other places to drink tea in all weather)

Perhaps you will be lucky enough to visit China some day and walk through these gardens in person. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy these Chinese garden photos I have taken over the last 30 years and learn a little about the philosophy and structure of them.