Lotus Flowers in the Breezing Winding Courtyard | 曲院风荷 | qǔ yuàn fēnɡ hé Address: Yue Lake, northwest side of the Westlake | 西湖西北角岳湖 | xī hú xī běi jiǎo yuè hú
Quyuan Park (Crooked Courtyard) is situated near the mouth of Jinshajian Stream, the biggest natural water supply into the West Lake. In the South Song Dynasty a royal wine workshop was set up here. In the lake next to the winery stood a large area of lotuses waggling and dancing a little bit intoxicatingly in summer breezes. Visitors felt wonderful with both the scenery and wine while aromas of lotus flowers and wine were wafting in the air. The spot got its fame as one of the top ten best attractions in that dynasty and has kept its charm in colors and odors since then. The park covers an area of 14 hectares, subdivided into three sections of the crooked courtyard, lotus flower area and waterfront wooded area. A geographic hub of the West Lake landscape, the crooked courtyard links with the Yuehu Lake on the east and leads to Guos' Estate on the south by the Su Causeway. On the north, it adjoins the Yue Fei Tomb, Bamboo Garden and Hangzhou Botanical Garden.
Though no longer a winery, the crooked courtyard is the vantage spot for viewing lotus in full blossom in the summer. The beauty of the park lies in its wide range of lotus plants of various species. While in furious blossom, the lotus flowers show off reds, golds and whites in different figures and forms. Broad leaves spread leisurely on the limpid lake waters and low bridges zigzag among flowers. Such a view makes visitors forget themselves.