A Visit To The Rock Garden In Chandigarh

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About The Rock Garden In Chandigarh

The Rock Garden in Chandigarh is a very famous and popular tourist attraction for visitors to Chandigarh city. Spread over an area of about 40 acres in a former jungle area, the rock garden is essentially a sculpture garden but made by using trash in the form of household and industrial waste products like used bottles, broken ceramic tiles, bangles, glass, china, electrical fittings, pots, sanitary ware and crockery; scrap metal wires, fused tube lights, lime kiln waste, discarded metal frames, handle bars, human hair, stones, pebbles, old tires etc.

The Rock Garden can rightfully be called a green garden as products that could have easily been thrown away as junk and useless were put to constructive use instead of letting them cause environmental clutter and pollution.


The entire garden is made up of large courtyards of mosaic and are linked to each other by high and low paths surrounded by high rise walls and deep gorges. There are a number of huge buildings interlinked with an amazing number of waterfalls, thousands of sculptures of various shapes and sizes.

Rock Garden Photos

Click thumbnail to view full-size
the ouside of the rock gardenwaste ceramic tiles in useScrap electrical fittings being usedOld pots being reusedwater tank made by using broken ceramic tiles
the ouside of the rock garden
the ouside of the rock garden
waste ceramic tiles in use
waste ceramic tiles in use
Scrap electrical fittings being used
Scrap electrical fittings being used
Old pots being reused
Old pots being reused
water tank made by using broken ceramic tiles
water tank made by using broken ceramic tiles

History Of The Rock Garden

The Rock Garden is a creation of the great visionary and self taught artist, Nek Chand Saini who was a government road inspector in Chandigarh city, way back in the 1950s.

It all started when in 1957, Nek Chand started building this garden secretly by collecting waste and scrap material himself by moving about on his bicycle. He worked at night sculpting various figurines. All this work was carried out in a gorge in an jungle area, located close to where the Sukhna lake is today, for fear of detection by the government authorities as the land was one that was excluded from development being in a forest area.

For almost 18 years Nek Chand toiled, by day in his job and by night in his passion, relentessly working on his dream project almost single handedly. In 1975, the local government officials discovered what he had been up to but by that time the rock garden had encroached on about 12 acres of forest reserve land with about 2000 sculptures of animals, birds, dancers musicians etc. Nek Chand had built a fantasy world of palaces, pavilions and other structures depicting Indian village life.

The government officials were in a quandary as by law the entire structure needed to be razed down being created on a land designated as a forest conservatory with no permission for construction purposes.

However, public opinion favored retention of the now built Rock Garden when people flocked to visit this creation and were enchanted with it. The government machinery had no option but to bow down to public pressure and relent. The Rock Garden was then formally announced public property and was opened to the public.
Nek Chand was promoted from his erstwhile post, made the Sub Division Engineer of the Rock Garden and given 50 workers to complete the garden.

Today, the Rock Garden is Chandigarh city's chief tourist attraction. It is not home to roses or other flowers; instead it is a garden of art.

The Rock Garden is now acnowledged as one of the modern wonders of the world. It attracts about 5000 visitors everyday. It is open daily from 9 AM to 7 PM in summer (1 April to 30 September) and from 9 AM to 6 PM in winter (1 October to 31 March).

It is located in Sector 1 almost adjacent to Sukhna Lake, another popular tourist attraction.

More Photos Of The Rock Garden

Click thumbnail to view full-size
dried up garlands of flowers.broken glass bangle pieces have been used in these figurines.
dried up garlands of flowers.
dried up garlands of flowers.
broken glass bangle pieces have been used in these figurines.
broken glass bangle pieces have been used in these figurines.

About Nek Chand

Nek Chand was awarded the Padam Shri (equivalent of a British knighthood) in 1984 by the Indian government. One of his sculptures appeared on an Indian postage stamp. International praise and recognition has also been lavishly showered on the humble Nek Chand.

He was awarded the Grande Medaille de Vermeil in Paris in 1980. He has received hundreds of awards.

Nek Chand was requested to construct a garden at the children's Museum, Washington DC, by Ann Lewis, the Director of the museum.

Nek Chand's figurines have been installed in various museums around the world like:

  • The Capitol Children's Museum, in Washington DC.
  • The american Folk Art museum, in New York.
  • The main entrance to the Collection de l'art brut in Lausanne, Switzerland.
  • The John Michael Kohler Arts Center, in Winconsin USA.

Nek chand has been given honorary citizenship of various countries. He has also built another rock garden in Kerala, a state in South India.

Nek Chand foundation is a registered charity formed in 1997 with the aim to support Nek Chand's work and raise awareness of Nek Chand's work worldwide. A volunteer work is also underway with the foundation. more details can be had from www.nekchand.com

The Rock Garden in Chandigarh is a must see for all visitors to Chandigarh.

All dividers used in this hub are from www.clipart.uk

Please Rate This Hub. Thanks.

4.8 out of 5 stars from 8 ratings of A Visit To The Rock Garden In Chandigarh

A Personal Visit To The Rock Garden, Chandigarh, India, on 10 November 2012

© 2012 Rajan Singh Jolly

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Comments 60 comments

remaniki profile image

remaniki 4 years ago from Chennai, India

Beautiful hub Rajan. I have seen pictures of this rock garden earlier but did not get to read so many details about its making. What a great idea! And the lovely sculpted figurines made by Nek Chand are amazing!

Thank you for the knowledge. It's nice to learn something new from your hubs. Sharing this wonderful piece of information.

Cheers, Rema.


flashmakeit profile image

flashmakeit 4 years ago from usa

Nek Chand was a busy man working all day. He really developed his own fantasy world. Vote up!


Mike Robbers profile image

Mike Robbers 4 years ago from London

I had never heard of Rock Garden before this and find it absolutely incredible. The hours of dedicated labor that went into making this beautiful garden must be considerable.

thanks a lot Rajan, Voted up and shared


sid76 4 years ago

Wonderful spot. I have visited couple of times!


shiningirisheyes profile image

shiningirisheyes 4 years ago from Upstate, New York

It sounds as if the artist Nek Chand Saini was certainly ahead of his time when it comes to green recycling concepts. What an interesting way to put items to go use while so many are able to enjoy them.

Another lovely journey through your part of the world.

I thank you and am voting up.


bizwin profile image

bizwin 4 years ago from England, UK

Great hub. That is a very beautiful rock garden that I would love to visit. Nice sight.


carol7777 profile image

carol7777 4 years ago from Arizona

I love the rocks..and all the information.. Can't write too much as the wifi may go off..Great hub as always.


alocsin profile image

alocsin 4 years ago from Orange County, CA

You certainly went on a picture-taking spree at this rock garden, which is more properly called a recyclable garden. I'm glad the government decided to keep it because it's an excellent example of turning trash into something beautiful Voting this Up and Interesting. Shared.


thumbi7 profile image

thumbi7 4 years ago from India

Sounds interesting..

Photos are lovely

Shared..


bdegiulio profile image

bdegiulio 4 years ago from Massachusetts

Rajan, looks fascinating. Would love to visit someday. Your photos are beautiful.


sgbrown profile image

sgbrown 4 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

This is very interesting hub! I love all the ways he used rock and broken pottery for his designs. Not only was he "green" , but so talented as well. I am glad he finally was appreciated for his talent. Voted up and interesting! :)


Doodlehead profile image

Doodlehead 4 years ago from Northern California

I found this a very interesting story knowing that regular people in other countries than mine are prevented from simply expressing their joy of living in the nearby nature area where there are so few people it took 18 years for him to be found out and when he was there was a commotion about it.

Governments everywhere want to stifle freedom of expression. It is really wonderful that the government listened to the people and so cool that this guy became the caretaker or whatever.

Fun and fascinating hub.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

@ Rema - Am glad you gained useful info from this hub. Many thanks for reading and sharing. Much appreciated.

@ flashmakeit - Indeed Nek Chand spent his time most fruitfully and has left a lasting legacy for his numerous fans. Thanks for being here.

@ Mike - thank you for reading and of course sharing too. Yes Nek Chand spent a lot of time doing hard labor and it is heatening his work was appreciated on so many levels.

@ sid - thanks for your feedback. appreciate your visit.

@ shiningirisheyes - I believe you are right. In a way what he did then is very much the way to go now and we probably need to learn a lot from him. Many thanks for coming by.

@ bizwin - I do hope you get this opportunity to visit the rock garden. Thanks for stopping by.

@ Carol - Many thanks for coming by and am glad you ike the information. Thank you.

@ thumbi - thanks for reading. I'm glad you like the info. Thanks for sharing also.

@ Bill - thanks for coming by. Appreciate it.

@ Sheila - Yes certainly Nek Chand is a gifted man and a visionary in going green at the time. We need to emulate him in going green today. Thanks for stopping by.

@ Doodlehead - thanks for your views. Indeed, innovation needs to be appreciated on all levels. Thanks for stopping by.

@ Aurelio - thanks for appreciating and sharing.


rcrumple profile image

rcrumple 4 years ago from Kentucky

Rajan - What a beautiful creation! The pictures you supplied are great, but the video really helps to add scale to the size of the place. To imagine someone working to create this in secret is amazing. Thank goodness the public enjoyed it and kept the government from scraping the whole thing. Great job, my friend!


eHealer profile image

eHealer 4 years ago from Las Vegas

Rajan, this hub rocks! Get it? Your hubs are so interesting, I look forward to them. This is really interesting and well written. Nek Chand was a suppressed artist that won because of the people who loved is art. What a beautiful story. Thanks!


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

@ Rich - Thank you for giving the hub a read and for the appreciative comments. Your comments are truly valued and the visit much appreciated.

@ Deborah - Thanks you very much as well. your comments are appreciated from the heart and it's always a pleasure to see you here.


Eiddwen profile image

Eiddwen 4 years ago from Wales

A wonderful hub and thank you for sharing rajan ;I vote across board and share.

Eddy.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Thanks Eddy. I'm glad you like it. Thanks for the vote and share.


tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 4 years ago from New York

Simply beautiful! This 'rock' garden shows what one can do with a little love, a lot of dedication, and a lot of hard work! Thank goodness the government decided to keep these wonderful works and opened it to the public. Your photos are fantastic, showing the imagination and creativity of this man.

Voted up, useful, awesome, and interesting.


Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 4 years ago from Houston, Texas

Thank you so very much for introducing this fabulous Rock Garden in Chandigarh to us. So glad that the government agreed to let the creations of Nek Chand Saini remain and even be expanded upon. It is incredible and pays homage to the idea of recycling things in an artistic manner. Many up votes and definitely sharing.


rebeccamealey profile image

rebeccamealey 4 years ago from Northeastern Georgia, USA

How very interesting this guy Ned is. He is a bit of a Johnny Appleseed sounding character. Thanks for another great 'armchair trip', rajan!


Happyboomernurse profile image

Happyboomernurse 4 years ago from South Carolina

Wow!!!! I loved reading about the talented visionary artist, Nek Chand Saini, and the rock garden that he built in Chandigarh.

The story of how he toiled in secret for many years building it on government grounds that were meant to be a forest reserve showed a determination that was amazing. And it was great that there was a happy ending.

I was happy to hear that some of his figurines are in American Museums which are within driving distance from my home.

Thanks for sharing this beautiful hub.

Gave it 5 stars, voted up across the board except for funny, and shared.

Good luck in the Rigorous Review Contest. This hub would surely be deserving of a win.


sarovai profile image

sarovai 4 years ago

Passion, Patience pays. Creation of Rock Garden really a great thing to be remembered all over the world. I see 5000 visitors in a day is small amount. But Hope Rajan Jolly has given more light about this , may create enough popularity.


Debby Bruck profile image

Debby Bruck 4 years ago

This is So cool Rajan. What a feat for someone to accomplish. Thanks for sharing all these colorful photographs and video. Nek Chand needed to create and create and let the world see his shapes, colors, forms, patterns and designs. Monumental artwork installation from his imagination. Blessings, Debby


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

@ tillsontitan - a firm resolve and hard wok can do the impossible and Nek Chand had these two attributes in good measure. We are lucky to have been able to view his awesome creativity. Thanks for visiting, giving votes and appreciating the hub.

@ Peggy - We need to thank Nek chand as well as the public opinion going in his favor due to his exceptional talent to create something worthwhile from waste. Indeed the Rock Garden is worth a personal visit to truly appreciate its beauty and magnificence.

Thanks for being here and for the votes and sharing.

@ rebecca - well, I agree. I'm glad to have your appreciation and thanks for visiting.

@ Happyboomernurse - Gail, I do hope you visit these museums to see them since they are so near to your home. glad you like the information. Thanks for coming by, for all the votes, the 5 star rating, sharing the hub and the good wishes. Very much appreciated.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

@ sarovai - thanks for your visit, observations and comments.

@ Debby - Glad you like the info, pictures and the video. It is an awesome feat for someone with no artistic learning. But I guess inclination is more useful than learning here.

Thanks for stopping by.


ChristyWrites profile image

ChristyWrites 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

What a neat place. I like how well-organized your hubs are Rajan. Pleased to be able to read one today :)


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Thanks for the appreciation Christy! Glad you liked the info. Thanks.


prasetio30 profile image

prasetio30 4 years ago from malang-indonesia

Beautiful, brother. I really enjoy your writing style. Very informative hub and I love traveling topic. Nice picture and you deserve to get my vote (useful, interesting, awesome, beautiful). Have a good day!

Prasetio


Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

Glimmer Twin Fan 4 years ago

What a fun and fascinating place this would be to visit. My daughter would love it too. Thanks for another interesting hub!


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

@ Prasetio - Nice to know you enjoy reading these travel hubs. Thanks for the votes and visit.

@ GTF - I'm glad you like the info about the rock garden. Yes, it is a very attractive retreat for kids. Thanks for coming by.


dinkan53 profile image

dinkan53 4 years ago from India

Happy to know and watch the beautiful places in India. Thanks for sharing this wonderful hub. Voted and shared.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Glad you liked this visit dinkan. Thanks for sharing.


pstraubie48 profile image

pstraubie48 4 years ago from sunny Florida

How clever this is....what a wonderful way to use things that could have cluttered up our world. This was so interesting and sounds like a place that anyone would enjoy visiting. It is so inspiring to see that people have the foresight to reuse rather than add to the environmental pollution. Sending angels your way. :) ps


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Paticia, it is indeed a very educative and inspiring place whenever I visit it. It was fun visiting once more as Nekchand keeps on adding newer things to the rock garden. Once inside the entire atmosphere is of being in tranquil nature. I appreciate your sparing time to read and leave such beautiful comments. Thank you so much.


Millionaire Tips profile image

Millionaire Tips 3 years ago from USA

This does look like a very interesting place to visit. What a fascinating story about its creations. I am glad that he got the public support and was able to keep the sculptures. I especially liked all of the figurines, especially the ones made out of bangles. Voted up.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 3 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Millionaire Tips, the rock garden visit is a fascinating experience indeed! But for the creativity of Nek Chand and the public support we would have been deprived of watching this magnificent creation. I'm glad you like it. Thanks.


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 3 years ago from Northern California, USA

I feel like I just went on a great adventure. Thank you for all of the fabulous photos helping readers to enjoy the garden - if not in person, then virtually. The garden is so pristine, I guess it is due to the cute little reminder of the trash can with the words, "Use Me" scripted on it.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 3 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

I'm glad you like this armchair visit to the rock garden. Thanks for stopping by.


DDE profile image

DDE 3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

It is good to explore the country you live in and learn more as well, it has many beautiful features.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 3 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Glad you like this information. Thanks Devika.


Au fait profile image

Au fait 3 years ago from North Texas

So glad his work wasn't bull dozed when it was discovered! Your photos are very interesting and beautiful. Voting you up, and BI. Will share!


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 3 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Thanks Au fait. A personal visit is very satisfying. Thanks for sharing too.


avneet sidhu profile image

avneet sidhu 3 years ago from Chandigarh

Good Morning rajan jolly. Yes, Rock Garden in Chandigarh is very beautiful - its an example of magnificent artwork. You have posted great photographs... Great job!! Voted up!!!


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 3 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Hi Avneet,

Since you stay in Chandigarh you must know all about the Rock garden. We make try to visit this when we are in Chandigarh. I'm glad you like the write up.

Thanks for giving the hub a read and vote up.


Indian Chef profile image

Indian Chef 3 years ago from New Delhi India

Rajan, I have been to Rock Garden in Chandigarh and found it very beautiful. Voting it up and sharing.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 3 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Thanks and I'm sure you must have enjoyed your visit. Thanks for sharing the hub.


Steve O 3 years ago

That first picture looks like an elephant taking a dump between another elephant's back legs.


moonlake profile image

moonlake 3 years ago from America

Very interesting hub and enjoyed your photos. Wished I could someday see it. Voted up.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 3 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

moonlake, glad you liked the virtual tour of the rock garden. Thanks for visiting.


PurvisBobbi44 profile image

PurvisBobbi44 3 years ago from Florida

Hi,

This is one of the most amazing hub I've read so far, and how you introduced and added to it with your photos, makes an award winning one in my book. Your country has the most beautiful places and thanks you for sharing them with us.

Have a great day.

Bobbi Purvis


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 3 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Glad you like the information about the Rock Garden. Thanks for appreciating and it good to see you again. Thank you.

Have a great weekend, Purvis.


fivesenses profile image

fivesenses 3 years ago from new delhi

The pictures and information is very helpful for anyone wanting to visit.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 3 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Thanks, Leena.


Rochelle Frank profile image

Rochelle Frank 2 years ago from California Gold Country

What an inspired and inspiring place he has created. We need ot have more people in this world with such a vision-- and the determination to make a vision a reality. Thanks for sharing this.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 2 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Rochelle, I agree we need visionaries with the drive to carry out their vision to fruition. Thanks for stopping by.


Vvitta profile image

Vvitta 2 years ago from Petaling Jaya, Malaysia

I have been to this place. We we returning from Shimla and had a stop over here. It was amazing. The art and creativity that went into the park was astounding. Loved it.


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 2 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

Kalai, you are absolutely right. It is an amazing work of creativity. Glad you could see it.

Thanks for stopping by.


sumitpatial profile image

sumitpatial 12 days ago from Chandigarh

nice place in chandigarh....................


rajan jolly profile image

rajan jolly 7 days ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA. Author

sumitpatial, yes of course.

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