Humble Administrator's Garden

Remote 178 Dongbei St 平江区 Suzhou, Jiangsu China 215001 Published on: 30-08-2016

07:00 AM - 06:00 PM
Must see
13.00 USD

Humble Administrator's Garden is good for

Good for family with kids Family with kids Good
Good for senior Senior Good
Good for couple Couple Good
Good for solo Solo Good
Good for group Group Good
  • Highly recommended by fellow travellers.
First built in 1509, this 5.2–hectare garden is clustered with water features, a museum, a teahouse and at least 10 pavilions such as 'the listening to the sound of rain' and 'the faraway looking' pavilions – hardly humble, we know.

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Why Humble Administrator's Garden is special ?

The Humble Administrator's Garden covering about 52,000 sq. meters (12.85 acres), is the largest and most renowned. Due to its unique designs and ethereal beauty, the garden has garnered many special honors. It is listed as a World Cultural Heritage site and has also been designated as one of the Cultural Relics of National Importance under the Protection of the State as well as a Special Tourist Attraction of China. Along with the Summer Palace in Beijing, the Mountain Resort of Chengde in Hebei Province and the Lingering Garden in Suzhou, it is considered as one of China's four most famous gardens. No other classic garden in the country has been honored more than this one.


What to explore at Humble Administrator's Garden?

The garden consists of Eastern, Central and Western sections as well as some residences of the former owners. The resident houses are typical of the style of Suzhou Local Residences, whose feature can be seen in the famous water township Zhouzhuang not far from Suzhou City. The site of the residences has been rebuilt as the Garden Museum now.

Eastern Section

The Eastern Section is dotted with sheer hills, green grasses, dense bamboo and pine forests and winding streams. The main building is the Cymbidium Goeingii Hall (Lanxiang Tang). Its south wall has a panoramic map of the entire garden. Another impressive structure is the Celestial Spring Pavilion (Tianquan Ting), which gets its name from an ancient well inside whose water tastes very sweet.

Central Section

The Central Section is the truly elite part of the garden, with one-third of its area covered by water. It is lined with exuberant trees and elegant parlors. Pavilions and courtyards are clustered throughout. The Hall of Distant Fragrance (Yuanxiang Tang) is the main building that is named after a lotus pool nearby. When the summer comes the pool is filled with lotuses and the heady fragrance wafts into the building. The hall is designed with oversized glass windows on all sides for easy viewing. Nearby is the Small Flying Rainbow Bridge (Xiaofeihong), a rare type of bridge and the only one in the garden you can walk across.

Western Section

The main building in the Western Section is a stately and ornate hall which is divided into two by a massive screen. The south part is 18 Camellias Hall (Shiba Mantuoluohua Guan) and the north part is the 36 Pairs of Mandarin Duck's Hall (Saliu Yuanyang Guan). In a nearby pool where the ducks were fed, stands an octagonal Pagoda Reflection Pavilion (Taying Ting); there is an optical illusion here - it appears as if a pagoda was lifting when all we actually see is the reflection of the pavilion.

In recent years, the Humble Administrator's Garden has been the site of many floral exhibitions. Every spring and summer, the Azalea Festival and the Lotus Festival are held here. There are bonsai shows in the aptly named Bonsai Garden (Penjing Yuan) in the Western Section while precious Chinese stones are shown in the Elegant Stone House (Yashi Zhai) in the Central Section.


How to get to Humble Administrator's Garden?

- Take bus no. 40 or 313 and get off at Beiyuanlu Station.

- Take bus no. 55, 178, 202, 262, 309, 518, 529, 811, 923 or 925, or tourism bus no. 1, 2 or 5, and then get off at Suzhou Museum Station.

Selling points

  • “Delicate and refined”
  • “Grand and peaceful”
  • “Delightful gardens ”
  • “Large garden with much to see”
  • “Beautiful and relaxing garden”
2-day trip to Hangzhou

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2.0 days
33.57 USD
Total travel distance
Number of places
9 places




178 Dongbei St 平江区 Suzhou, Jiangsu China 215001

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Tips for you

  • Pack your drinks and food cause you don't want to waste time off this glorious gem of a garden
    What to bring
  • Bring a camera and an umbrella if you visit in the heat of summer
    What to bring
  • The grounds and flowing waterways are lovely any time of the year, but mid April thru May is when the flowering trees are most in bloom.
  • It is a great place for children, but peace and serenity only abide before the crowds and megaphones join the flow from 10AM.
  • Allow yourself a good 2 hours to meander through all the elements.
  • Try to visit early morning before the tour buses and avoid the weekends.
  • On the way out try to find in the shops people that make custom stamps. Best souvenir here
  • Keep in mind that the beautiful carved stone steps and paths are not pushchair or wheelchair friendly
    What to know


TripAdvisor View more

The Humble Administrator's Garden is a calm, relaxing place. The gardens and walkways are beautiful. The use of water is calming. Do not hurry through, but change your tourist pace to a stroll and enjoy the serenity! Nice 'Western' toilet.

TripAdvisor View more

For a humble administrator, the place sure isn't humble! magnificient place with gardens of different themes for the different seasons. Clean washroom within the garden as well.However, it is beautiful, and would be even more so in summer. Do beware that the place closes early. There are tickets for offpeak and peak season,which differs by 20RMB.

TripAdvisor View more

this garden is like a symbol of suzhou's great culture and history. made by a government official in past. the name humble comes from the fact that the owner of this garden was a very humble, kind person who always liked to help others, esp the, its humble administrator's garden.located in the centre of city, around 1km from the biggest shopping street, guanqianjie. its magnificant . but i woukd say one thing, dont forget to have a guide or that electronic guide. because without knowing the menaing of things ther, you wont find it interesting.the entrance ticket price is around 70rmbs.a must

TripAdvisor View more

This is a very beautiful and peaceful garden and house. The house allows you to see into the lives of the family who lived there, their furnishings rooms and way of life. Although it is in the centre of town the garden is very peaceful and just as you see in photographs of Chinese gardens. What was also very nice to see were all the students from various colleges sketching and learning about the history of the house and it's architecture A wonderful visit

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