Kezhi Garden

Commonly called the ‘Ma family Garden’, it is home to a beautiful courtyard and historical buildings.

TravelCurious Tip

Events, including Chinese opera, are sometimes held in the gardens — ask our guide if anything is happening during your visit!

The Kezhi Garden can be found in Zhujiajiao, an ancient water town that is a suburb of Shanghai. The town’s history reaches back roughly 1700 years and is etched into the cobbled roads and curved rock bridges that span its waterways. It is often described as “The Venice of Shanghai,” but is also rather poetically known as “Pearl Stream,” perhaps because its historical core has been so well preserved — it is certainly the best preserved of the four ancient towns in Shanghai.

Grand townhouses from the Ming and Qing dynasties dominate Zhujiajiao, but its greatest treasure is surely the Kezhi Garden. This huge manorial garden is more commonly known as the Ma Family Garden, in honour of a former host called Ma Wengin. The garden is among the largest in southern China and offers a precious connection to the history and spirituality of the country — something that is often lost in the relentless development of urban China.

In the garden’s artificial hill area there is symbolic architecture, the highlight being a five-story building upon which stands the Moon View Pavilion. Secluded, serene and beautiful, the pavilion encapsulates something of the essence of China, before the breakneck 20th century.

Nearby Attractions

See all attractions in Shanghai
Xiao long bao
A type of steamed bun stuffed with meat and cooked in a bamboo steaming basket.
Boat Ride
This relaxing ride will take you under stone bridges and down winding waterways.
Fangsheng Bridge
Take part in the tradition of buying live fish then releasing them back into the open water for good luck.
Moon View Pavillion
A beautiful courtyard in the Kehzi Gardens.
Silk Mill
Experience how world famous South China silk is made by visiting a real silk mill.
Qiao Family Road
Named after the richest trading family in Shanghai, this road dates back to this amazing city's origin.

Related Tours

Private Tour of Zhujiajiao Ancient Water Town
Shanghai today is an intoxicating mix of the traditional and the modern, and no trip would be complete without an excursion to ancient water town Zhujiajiao.

  • Meet your private guide and journey to Zhujiajiao.
  • Discover a photogenic canal town rich in charm dubbed the 'Venice of the East.
  • Explore a settlement rich in ancient history, dating back to the Ming Dynasty.
  • Stroll cobbled streets, hemmed by canals, strung with red rice-paper lanterns.
  • Enjoy a local lunch, recommended by your guide (price not included).
  • See Chinese cartographerstea shopspavement artists and paper cutters.
  • Enjoy a gondola ride through timeless scenery to a Chinese folk song serenade.
With its quaint stone bridges, mist-cloaked canals and wooden gondolas, picturesque Zhujiajiao feels a world away from modern China. Dubbed the Venice of the East, it oozes with sleepy charm where the water laps against the canal-side and echoes the slow-paced rhythm of daily life. Fishermen wait patiently for the telltale tug on a line, as housewives haul laundry from the shallows of the glassy inky-blue water. 

On this fascinating Private Tour of Zhujiajiao Ancient Water Town, you will venture into the mighty Yangtze River delta region where bicycles outnumber motorized vehicles. Everything centres on the waterways in Zhujiajiao, evoking memories of old Shanghai. Wooden gondolas ferry rice sacks and crates of fish up and down the river, sending silvery ripples across the surface of the canal. Skinny cobbled streets form a chaotic riddle through Zhujajiao crisscrossed by alleyways bedecked with red lanterns. 

Meander into the heart of Zhujiajiao where fortune-tellers, paper cutters and tea shops are backdropped by fine 13th-century Chinese buildings. As you stroll across bridges and along the canal side, see locals playing cards at rickety tables or taking tea. Of course, no visit to Zhujiajiao is complete without the timeless pleasure of a gondola ride and on your private, guided tour you will pass moored sampans where artists brush-stroke vivid colours onto silk-strung easels, to create glorious pictures of birds and blooms. 



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