It’s hard to resist the siren call of Dalian’s seaside with its oceanfront cafes and picturesque pier walks, but the cityscape is also dappled with the deep greens of interior parks. The most dense and least crowded is Dalian West Forest Park, considered the “natural oxygen bar” by locals. A 20-minute ride west of the city and you’ll be surrounded by verdant hills. Inside the park, follow the well-manicured trail over a raised wooden boardwalk as it winds its way around a reservoir past babbling rivers, ponds with a polka-dot pattern of lily pads, and trickling waterfalls. European-style buildings, sculptures, and windmills turning with the breeze more closely resemble a scene from the Dutch countryside, but signs marked with Chinese characters lead the way.
Take a taxi ride 20 minutes west via Shugang Road to Hongqi Road.
DALIAN WEST FOREST PARK (西郊国家森林公园): Liushu Village, Hongqi Town, Ganjingzi District