The Martyr’s Park with lakes, pagodas, and shaded walks, is the perfect place to get a breath of fresh air in crowded Changsha. The Martyr’s Memorial pays homage to those who died for the Communist liberation struggle. The base of the memorial houses an exhibition hall. At the eastern gate of the park is an impressive stone waterfall created by an enormous natural stone mined from Hunan province and moved here.
Our next stop is Nian Jia Lake, in the center of the park, where we can take a leisurely self-powered boat ride. Before the lake is a large amusement park area, where kids of all ages can ride the many attractions. At a small pond, we find a some curious spectators watching as a pack of hungry koi beg for a treat. These fish know how to get attention.
Nian Jia Lake, at about a quarter of a square mile, is at the expansive center of the park. My wife decides to rent one of the numerous swan boats to tour the lake. Our swan is pedal powered, and my wife will be our chauffeur. We pass under the ornately decorated arched stone bridge that spans from the shores where we rented our boat to a small island in the center of the lake. The island is named for all the Willow trees that grow there. From our tiny swan boat, we can see the skyline of downtown Changsha. We approach the three arched stone bridge that lies at the center of the lake.
Our journey on the Nian Jia Lake is coming to an end and we maneuver our swan back to the docks at the shoreline. A grove of tiny violets line the shores along some of the lake, and kites are flying high in the wind. Our visit to Martyr’s Park has come to an end and we have a lot of happy memories to take back home.