~ Last updated on Sep 27, 2021 ~
The Lan Su Chinese Garden cultivates a richly authentic Chinese culture within an oasis of tranquil beauty and harmony. My experience here was definitely one to remember as this is considered to be one the most authentic and largest classical Suzhou-style (Ming Dynasty) garden outside of China.
I felt like I was teleported to another place while standing within this amazing garden, smelling the fragrant tea and hearing the music from the tea house, tasting authentic dumplings and saké, and meditating by the huge koi pond.
One of Portland’s Greatest Treasures
The 40,000-square-foot Lan Su Chinese Garden is a result of a collaboration between Portland and Suzhou (Portland’s sister city in China). The names of Portland and Suzhou are combined to form Lan Su. “Lan” (蘭) is also Chinese for “Orchid” and “Su” (蘇) is the word for “Arise” or “Awaken,” so the garden’s name can also be interpreted poetically as “Garden of Awakening Orchids.” (蘭蘇園)
Lan Su Chinese Garden was completed on September 14, 2000 by more than 60 Suzhou artisans and is one of Portland’s greatest treasures and most interesting sites to see. Not only is it a beautiful botanical garden, but an inspiring experience based on 2,000 year old Chinese tradition that combines art, architecture, design and nature in perfect harmony.
A Truly Authentic Urban Oasis
I guarantee you that once you step inside the garden’s walls, you’ll feel as if you’ve traveled through time to another era in a faraway world. Literally the only thing that ruined the experience for me was seeing the skyscrapers in the background, which can easily be overlooked by the surrounding beauty of the garden.