Located at No.132, Anrenfang Street in the center of the Old City of Shanghai, Yu Garden is regarded as one of the most famous and finest Chinese garden. The garden was constructed in 1559 during the Ming Dynasty as the private garden by Pan Yundan who spent almost 20 years to build the garden to please his parents.
In the middle of the 17th century, the garden fell into disrepair due to the decline of Pan’s family. The garden was bought and repaired by merchants in 1760. During the first Opium War (1842), the British army seized the garden for five days and ruined most of it. In 1942, the garden was damaged again by Japanese troops. From 1956 to 1961, the garden was repaired and opened to the public in 1961.
Taking up 20,000 square meters, Yu Garden can be separated into six areas including Grand Rockery, Heralding Spring Hall, Inner Garden, Jade Magnificence Hall, Lotus Pool and Ten Thousand-Flower Tower. Grand Rockery was made of huangshi stones featuring cliff, gorges, and winding caves. Grand Rockery was created by Zhang Nanyang of the Ming Dynasty. Cuixiu Hall, located at the north Grand Rockery, is the main building in this area. There is a platform on the hill where you can get panoramic view of the entire garden.
The Heralding Spring Hall was constructed in 1820. From 1853 to 1855, Heralding Spring Hall became the base of Small Sword Society. Exquisite Jade Rock in Heralding Spring Hall is a treasure of the garden and also one of the famous rocks along the Yangtze River. The rock is about 11 feet (3.3 meters) high and has 72 holes. The wonder of the rock lies in the smoke that can seep out from the holes when you burn a joss stick below the rock. The Inner Garden, originally named Eastern Garden, was built in 1709 and rebuilt in 1956 for combining the western and eastern parts.
Chinese Pingyin: yu yuan Opening Times: 8:30 – 17:00
Ticket price: 40 yuan per person （April. 1 to June. 31 and Sept. 1 to Nov. 30); 30 yuan per person (June, 1 to March, 31, July, 1 to August, 31 and December 1 to 31)
Location: No. 132 Anren Street, Huangpu District, Shanghai
How to get there: Take buses of No.11, No.26 No.64, NO.145, No.715, No.736, No.801, No. 929, No. 932, No.969 and No. 980.