The Zhu Family Gardens is a huge Qing-era (1644-1911) complex of ancestral building, family homes, courtyards, ponds and gardens. You can amble from courtyard to courtyard through intricately carved and painted wooden doors. Inside the courtyards, flowers and sculpted trees grow.
The Zhu Family earned its fortune through its mill and tavern and traded everything from tin to Gejiu to opium. The family’s influence waned following the political chaos after the 1911 revolution.
The 20,000 square meter complex took 30 years to build.
Entrance to the Zhu Family Garden is from 8am to 8pm and costs 50 CNY ($8.00). Allow a couple hours to wander at your leisure and enjoy photographing the courtyards and gardens.
Jianshui is small city in Yunnan Province located about three hours south of Kunming. It’s known for its traditional architecture. It’s where I witnessed the celebration of the Chinese New Year and old folks playing Chinese Chess under Chaoyang Gate.