Date Traveled, January 2012
Located in the midst of Hong Kong's urban sprawl, the The Chin Lin nunnery and the adjacent Nan Lian gardens are both beautiful places to visit and see. They offer a chance to enjoy a respite from the surrounding bustle.
The Chin Lin nunnery is a Buddhist temple located in the Diamond Hill area of Hong Kong, a little off the usual route for visitors to the city but easily accessible by taking the Kwan Tung MRT line. I was visiting my partner's relatives in Kwan Tung earlier and for us it was just on the way back, so we decided to stop there. The nunnery is quite beautiful with traditional Chinese architecture. There are many courtyards in between buildings and they all have gardens or pools in them. The buildings have many statues and being Chinese new year when we visited, there were a lot of worshippers at the temple. An interesting thing about Chin Lin nunnery is that it is built entirely without the use of nails.
The rolling mists in the hills behind the nunnery
The inner courtyard
A pond in the inner courtyard
The Nan Lian gardens
A lake in the Nan Lian gardens
The adjacent Nan Lian gardens makes for a natural extension to the temple and you might as well enjoy a walk around the gardens once you are done with Chin Lin. The gardens are also modeled in traditional Chinese aesthetics and are full of pretty pools and stylistic footbridges over them. The biggest highlight of the place is probably appreciating being in nature and enjoying the serenity, while also enjoying the views around of the city with a backdrop of the surrounding hills.There is a vegetarian restaurant in the garden with a neat looking artificial waterfall. It looked like an inviting place for a snack but we did not have time and had to head back. All in all it was a good diversion and certainly a trip to consider on a visit to Hong Kong.