Xueye Agri-Expo Garden

Xueye Agri-Expo Garden, Laiwu

Xueye Agri-Expo Garden
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Wahrzeichen & Sehenswürdigkeiten • Bauernhöfe

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Kevin B
Blackburn, UK283 Beiträge
An afternoon of my life I'm *not* getting back.
Aug. 2016 • Familie
My wife picked this out as a stop-off activity between one destination and another, on the principle that it would be a nice place to walk around and educational for our five year-old son. I was skeptical, but always happy to be proved wrong, so off we went.

Admittedly, we arrived at the park quite late in the day, but the car park was darn near empty. Tickets were bought and we walked in the grand, but quiet, entranceway. The entrance was very pretty and well kept, especially as it was so quiet and we were able to admire the thought and planning that went into the floor design and the way it was worked into the surrounding arches. Very nice. So far, so good.

Throught the entrance to a nicely designed thoroughfare, but already the place was beginning to look less impressive. Yes, it was quiet, but there was a feeling that the gardens weren't quite up to the level of glory I'd expect (worse than most free parks here in China). Never mind... to the exhibits!

First, we headed over to the tropical arboretum. well laid out with a good range of plants, but it felt like it could use more. Many arboretums I've visited have housed birds, fish, butterflies or even (in one unlikely location) turtles. As a result, even with the elevated walkways and the dense nature of the layout, it still felt a little lifeless. It was attractive though, but going in the summer may have been a slight tactical faux-pas.

Out of here, over to the flower and vegetable houses. We crossed over a small stream full of lotusses (many of which had been robbed of their pods) and spotted an array of overgrown "adventure" river (ropes, steps, swings etc). This seemed like just the thing to engage our little boy, but sadly of the two that were cleared for use (almost all were closed for repairs), only one was suitable for his age group. Still, we made a few crossings to keep him amused and proceeded.

At the time we went, the park was busy installing a new elevated raft attraction, which admittedly looked like it could be a big draw, but for now obviously just made the park a little messy. I'm guessing it'll be ready for the 2017 season, which should add a little depth to the park.

Ahh yes, on to the flower house. yes, a big greenhouse, perhaps a little worse for wear in it's dressing, but filled with some beautiful tropical flowers and manned by frindly and helpful staff, who even picked a couple of flowers for us to smell and take with us. A nice touch. I should add at this point that the staff themselves were largely friendly and helpful, even unlocking and escorting us through an exhibit that had officially been closed for the day.

Next, the vegetable and fruit house. Yes, another big greenhouse and yes, looking a little worse for wear (some walk-throughs and seating areas closed to the public). Still, again we had a good selection and (for a price) you can pick your own fruit from some of the trees.

Out of here, we walked the grounds a little, largely through trellis-covered pathways adorned with gourds and grapes, which was a pretty nice touch. We discovered there was a farm animal section, so headed off that way. This took us past an indoor play area (closed, but by the looks of it decent fun, if un-amazing) and outdoor adventure play area (which would never pass health-and-safety muster back home, not just because of the attractions (rope climbs, net crossings etc - which I still think are postive things), but because some of them were falling to pieces. A nice touch, but really needs some hefty maintenance.

The farm animals... well. First, they were all caged and accompanied by two very noisy dogs. From memory they included a swan, some pheasants, some ducks and (in a slightly larger enclosure) some mountain goats. I'd say the dogs were well fed, but only because the noisier of the two had managed to acquire itself a pheasant. Now, I'm not squeamish, but I know others that are, but regardless, this smacks of bad planning.

There's space set aside for horse riding as well, but these were closed when we visited and showed no signs of recent use.

And that pretty much brought our visit to a close. the parks was definitely not worth the full entrance fee, nor was it worth going out of the way for (The drive here from Zibo was actually much more engaging). Would I recommend it as it stands? No. It is underwhelming compared to similar attractions (Shenyang's Expo gardens, for example) and needs a little TLC. the staff are the saving grace and seem pretty happy in their roles, friendly and helpful. For their benefit as much as anything I'm leaving the review at two stars, also onthe understanding that it seems that they are at least investing in the park's future.
Verfasst am 8. August 2016
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