ArtChina founder Aimin Liu grew up in Chengdu and People’s Park is one of her favourite places to go. She was happy to be able to visit on her current China trip and has shared some thoughts and photos with us.
Photos: Beautiful lotus blossom
Built in 1911, People’s Park was the first public park in Chengdu and the largest green space downtown.
Master Painter Zhang Daqian has his roots here, so there’s a notable art connection!
Image: A painting by master painter Zhang Daqian
People’s Park is appropriately named, because part of its charm is the wide variety of people you can spot while you’re there. If you enjoy people watching, People’s Park is quite a feast for your eyes. Some may shy away from crowded areas, but there are always plenty of activities happening.
If you are outgoing and adventurous enough to join in on some of the activities you see happening around you, then you’ll find Chinese people are very welcoming and inviting.
Photo: Chinese chess
One of the main activities you’ll find in the park is dancing. At first glance, you may think everyone is dancing together, but you’ll likely find that there are as many as four or five different groups of people dancing to different music in and around the same area. Some groups are free for anyone to join, but others are more like performances.
Just a few steps away from the loud music and dancing, you’ll find people drawing caricatures, fortune-tellers, snack shops, toy shops, candy art, people playing games like cards and badminton, karaoke singers, and an area set aside for relationship match-making, etc.
Photos: Card playing and match-making
Wander along to the south side, and you’ll find a big lake where boats are available to rent.
The Railway Protection Movement Monument, designated as one of China’s Major Historical and Cultural Sites, can be found in the park.
There is a large rock sculpture at the main entrance and here you’ll find more dancing, water calligraphy, and kite flying. A fun fact: Many older, experienced kite flyers find special joy in flying their kites so far away that no one can actually see the kite!
Of course, the famous Heming Teahouse is also in People’s Park. If you sit in the teahouse, then you will definitely be offered a traditional-style ear cleaning. Sometimes near here, you’ll find people playing traditional Chinese instruments such as the pipa or erhu.
Video: A visitor and sounds of the park
So if you ever make it to Chengdu, China, don’t miss a visit to the lively yet beautiful and peaceful People’s Park.