The site now resembles an apocalyptic wasteland rising out of surrounding cornfields, with scrubby brush popping up around the skeletal remains of castles and other mythical structures. It’s both beautiful and haunting, cared for by locals when they aren’t tending to their crops.
Numerous photographers have visited Wonderland to take in the eerie surroundings. Reuters photographer David Gray noted, “I came across a rather farcical sight of some farmers digging a well next to a castle; a moment I will always savor as a photographer in a place like China where castles are not in huge supply.” He called Wonderland “another sad example of property development in China involving wasted money, wasted resources and the uprooting of farmers and their families.”
Videographer Catherine Hyland described it this way on her website: “Trapped in limbo, a hybrid space between the ‘real’ and the artificial, this environment induces a sense of transformation or manipulation that appears to permeate and displace the realm of fantasy. Tamed by the locals, the uncompleted remnants of Wonderland become the antithesis of everything it was supposed to be, its value altered permanently.”