Chinese Garden Overview

The Chinese Garden is a beautiful, manicured temple garden in the Swiss city of Zurich. It is situated along the lake at the Zürichhorn and is frequented by locals and tourists alike. The garden was a gift from a nearby Swiss town of Kunming and is one of the highest-ranked temple gardens outside of China.

It has a beautiful pond with a small island in the middle. The island is decked with beautiful pavilions and a palace! The garden pays homage to the traditional Chinese gardens and follows the theme of the Three Friends of Winter. This means that the landscape of the park is dominated by three major tree types which bloom throughout the winter; including pines, bamboo and plum blossoms. Explore this captivating sanctuary during your trip to Switzerland, immersing yourself in its timeless beauty and cultural richness

The different flowers found in the garden also carry special meaning. For example, the willows which line the pond stand for the purity of the water and holiness and the plum blossoms symbolise the joyfulness that spring brings!

The entire garden complex, including the boundary wall and the temples, is covered in intricate designs and patterns representing the rich Chinese culture. You will also find sculptures depicting the Chinese dragon of clouds and carved panels with experts from old Chinese tales.

How To Reach

There are several different ways of reaching the Chinese Garden from Zürich Airport.

1. By Car/Taxi: 
The cheapest way to reach the garden is by driving. The drive takes around 14 minutes to cover a distance of 13 kilometres and will cost you around 2 Swiss Francs or Rs. 148.

The fastest way is by road and in case you do not have a car, you can also choose to book a taxi. The taxi will cost more money but will save time. A 14-minute long drive will cost you around 60-75 Swiss Francs or Rs. 4,440 - Rs. 5,550.

2. By local Train: 
Another great way of reaching the garden from the airport is by hopping on a train. There is a direct train connecting the two places and takes around 20 minutes. You can take the train from the Zürich Flughafen station and get off at  Zürich Tiefenbrunnen. The frequency of the trains leaving the station is roughly one train every 30 minutes.

3. By Bus: 
Another great way of travelling the distance is by bus. You can get on the bus number 33E and route number 31, and reach the garden within 17 minutes. It costs less than 3 Swiss Francs or Rs. 222.

Best Time To Visit

1. The garden opens for a limited amount of time; from 17 March to 21 October.

2. The spring months from March to May are the best time to visit the Chinese Garden when you can enjoy the views of delicate white and pink blossoms.

3. If you want to escape the crowds that flock the garden during summers, you can also visit during the autumn months of September and October. Around this time, most of the plants are still in bloom and the crowds have also descended.

4. You can visit the garden in the morning to escape the crowds and enjoy the morning vistas of the surrounding scenery.

5. If you do not mind the crowds, you can also enjoy sunsets in the evening.

Other Essential Information

1. Location:
 Bellerivestrasse 138, 8008 Zürich, Switzerland

2. Entry fee: 
Entrance tickets to the Chinese Garden can be bought from the booth outside the garden. The ticket prices start from 1 Swiss Franc and go up to 4 Swiss Franc or Rs. 74 to Rs. 293. You can also buy a season pass for 30 Swiss Francs or Rs. 2,195. Entry for kindergarten children is free when they are accompanied by a teacher.

Sightseeing spots:

1. The Sculpted Walls: 
The boundary wall that runs throughout the periphery of the garden not only protects the garden from intruders but is a piece of art in its own right. The wall has beautiful windows barred with bamboo and lotus tiles that adorn three of the four sides of the boundary wall. The wall corners and tops have sculptures of the Chiwen dragon, the second of the nine dragon sons.

2. The Portal: 
The entrance to the garden is also soaking in character with a golden plaque with calligraphy saying ‘China Garden’. The first beckons to the entrances of buildings belonging to Chinese royalty with its red colour and nine-nail rows. There is a second gate which has been named the second-to-last gate and carries inscriptions from old Chinese tales and fables.

3. Artificial Mountain: 
This artificial sculpture represents the Yin and Yang of land and water. The different rock formations not only look a sight but are also representative of Chinese landscaping philosophy and way of life.

4. The Bridge: 
There is a bridge which connects the pavilion’s island to the inner garden. Here, you will find inscriptions that talk about the friendship between the two cities of Zurich and Kunming.

5. The Pavilions: 
The garden has multiple pavilions, made out in different shapes that symbolize different aspects of Chinese philosophy. There is a circular pavilion in the beginning that embodies the middle and thus the fifth cardinal direction of Chinese culture.

The hectagonal pavilion that comes afterwards, is filled with carvings of the Phoenix, the symbol of empress, and flowers, the symbols of feminine beauty. The third is a square pavilion which forms the entrance to the water palace and has two golden Phoenix and plum blossoms depicting an entrance to a newly awakened life.

6. Water Palace: 
The water palace forms the heart of the garden and is painted through and through. You will find intricate paintings adorning its outer walls, doors, windows and an equally beautiful interior.

7. Distance from Zürich Airport: 
Chinese Garden stands at a distance of about 12.5 kilometres from the airport and the distance can be covered in around 21 minutes by road.

Places to Stay near Chinese Garden

1. City Stay Apartments
: This hotel near the Chinese Garden is situated in Kesselgasse 2. You can choose to stay at fully furnished, spacious apartments decked with all the modern facilities. The apartments have dedicated spaces for dining, sleeping and lounging, offering you a homely feeling away from home. The average cost here is Rs. 13,400 per night..

2. Aparthotel:
The city of Zurich has several different Aparthotels spread across the place. The nearest one to Chinese Garden is only a 2-minute drive away. The luxurious rooms, as well as the scenic and convenient location, makes these a solid option. The prices for the rooms start from Rs. 15,900 per night.

3. EMA House Serviced Apartments:
These serviced apartments near the Chinese Gardens are an excellent option if you are looking for value for money. The rates start at Rs. 11,200 per night and include wide-open spaces like sunny balconies, spacious living rooms and dedicated dining spaces. The fully-functional apartments also offer washing areas and kitchens, making long stays comfortable.

4. Sorell Hotel:
This is the place you want to choose when looking for a proper hotel-type accommodation in the area. The hotel is decked with all the modern facilities and the rooms are spacious and well-lit. The hotel also has a sizable gardens where you can enjoy a delicious breakfast and excellent views. The prices start from Rs. 15,300.

Places to Eat  near Chinese Garden

1. Tufi Restaurant:
This is an organic restaurant at a stone's throw away from the Chinese Garden. Here, you can enjoy everything from vegan and gluten-free soups, organic beef steaks, homemade Indian curries and a wide selection of desserts and wines.

The cosy settings with outdoor dining options makes it the perfect choice if you want to escape the humdrum of the city and hordes of tourists, without compromising on taste.

2. Gandria Restaurant:
If you are craving authentic Italian food in the heart of Switzerland, then you need to make a stop at this restaurant. This hidden gem tucked away in a mostly residential area offers excellent options for food and wine. The solid menu has a variety of options from antipasti, risottos, couscous and meats. It is often described as the best Italian restaurant in Zurich.

3. Neumünster Restaurant:
When looking for authentic Swiss fare in the area, you definitely want to make a stop at this small restaurant. They are known for their consistently good quality of food and excellence in service. You can try a variety of meats with complementary wines and discover what true Swiss food tastes like.

4. Bimi:
Zurich’s metropolitan character is reflected in its restaurants and to enjoy some of the most delicious international food, you must make a stop at this Japanese restaurant. The authentic wooden floors and a very Japanese interior give it an other-worldly charm in the middle of this Swiss city. The menu offers a variety of Bento boxes, sushi, curries, noodles, edamame and much more!
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