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Yuan Bo Yuan (International Garden Exposition)

Note: This article was originally published on December 21, 2009, in the Shenzhen Daily.
The information was accurate at that time, and may be outdated now. Use with caution.

The T. Rex near the main (south) entrance on Shennan points the way to the "Dinosaur World" exhibit.

Yuan Bo Yuan opened back in September of 2004 as the "5th China International Garden and Flower Exposition." The previous expositions had been temporary installations, but our city kept this one open as a park offering both kitsch and culture.

First, the culture. In addition to the 67 domestic cities, 25 countries also constructed garden areas; many returned home after the Expo, but several remain, including areas representing Indonesia (Bali), Bolivia, France, Japan, Nepal, and Pakistan.

Other areas represent famous scenic places around China, like the Jiangnan Garden, the Mingcui Lake, and over 70 more.

Now for the kitsch-of-the-day: The "Dinosaur World" exhibit is located near the main (south) gate on Shennan Road. Its sideshow-esque collection of prehistoric beasts is definitely worth a look.
Give yourself at least half a day for the gardens and dinosaurs; at 66 hectares (over 160 acres) it's a lot to cover!

Admission to the gardens is free, all day every day. "Dinosaur World" is open 10am-5pm, closed Monday and Tuesday; 20rmb entry fee for the exhibit, with discounts for children, seniors, and groups. [Check this! It was true at the time of publication.]
Numerous buses serve the park, including 54, 109, 121, 204, 210, and 223 past the front gate. This entrance lies between Qiaocheng Dong and Zhuzilin Metro Stations on Line 1.

Whimsical statues running up a staircase.
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Here are a few more photos of the gardens at Yuan Bo Yuan. These were taken in December of 2005.

The group gathers in front of the Christmas tree out front.

The large lake inside the grounds.

A pagoda on the hill

Another view of the pagoda, with a Chinese courtyard in the foreground.

A view of part of the gardens from the top of the pagoda.

Chinese visitors to the gardens pose for a photo.

A pavilion built by Nepal; note the prayer wheel in the foreground.

Statuary in the Indian garden.

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