Back to Chinatown | 24th September 2011 | 19:37 PDT

Bitching to my friends about Chinatown saying how awful it is, not because of the low tax bracket area it resides in, but how every Chinatown is the essentially same bullshit and the essence of  nons...

My friend slapped me at that point and told me I had done it wrong and tried to convince me it was a half decent place to visit, but I was being like a petulant little child and being as dismissive as I could without getting another slap.

Boom! (via

My friend slapped me again at that point and told me I should at least visit Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden, I was sighing in my mind thinking I really don't want to, but verbally agreed as I didn't want to be slapped a third time.

My friend smiled and said “good!” then slapped me a third time citing that I rolled my eyes when I said it... I must make a mental note not to do that in future.

Heading back into Chinatown, I arrive at an uninspiring concrete wall with a simple sign saying “Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden” thinking naturally negative thoughts when you're presented with a white concrete wall with a sign saying garden on it. I buy a ticket and like the good little sheep I did as I was told and I joined a garden tour that had just started.

Welcome wall, we wallcome you!

Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden is a faithful reproduction of garden that would have been present in the household of the the few elite during the Ming dynasty. The lengths gone to recreate something of the time required importing rocks, plants, building materials, even pebbles from China and using traditional fabrication methods to assemble the area.

Holy shit, even these?! WOW!

Bizarrely enough Dr. Sun Yat-Sen, has nothing to do with the garden nor a reflection from the era he was from, it was named in his honour as he spent time in Vancouver on three occasions whilst he was raising the funds to help overthrow the Qing Dynasty which finally got rid of the traditional Chinese emperors ruling the land. Dr. Sun Yat-Sen was elected as the first president of China and is tagged as the Father of Modern China.

The garden itself it magnificent, representing every aspect of the outside world such as lakes and mountains it ultimately creates balance within itself using the beliefs of Feng Shui and Taoism you end up with something visually pleasing with carefully pruned plants to remain in proportion, the intriguing limestone rock formations, the little design details as you pass from one section to another and the everything is unique, so much thought has gone into each individual piece of this garden and its structures to keep everything unique and balanced.

Quite rare to see a shellfish basking in the sun

For something that controls nature so tightly and so synthetically, it has so many nods and sympathetic areas that deeply tune itself to the greater world and universe around it, and at risk of sounding like a pompous dickhead, this whole mixture creates something quite spiritually extraordinary.

In Australia, this is called a Bonza tree

Added to this there are a few pavilions erected around the main courtyard to give a simple idea of how the elite live and how these structures were created, such as not using materials such as screws and nails, which in itself is something quite remarkable.

No freaking nails used to keep this all up, just gravity!

The problem is, it's quite small so the whole experience is over before you really want it to be, you look around at the end thinking, there must be morem surely... No, there isn't – get out. Regardless, I'm glad my friend slapped me into submission to go and see this place but, I still stand by my initial thoughts of Chinatown. Blurgh.


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