Posted by: Kirsten | Sunday, 5 October 2008

The Japanese Tea Gardens of Golden Gate Park

Our family visited the Japanese Tea Gardens in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park a couple of weeks ago.  Well, actually… everyone in the family but myself (and the dog) visited the gardens.  And oh, I’m not bitter, in case you were wondering. Really, I’m not.  Really.

Originally created as part of the 1894 Worlds Fair, the gardens have gone through several transformations over the years, some well planned and well-intended, and other times questionable or arguably destructive.  One thing hasn’t changed much however, and that’s the sense of peace and tranquility one feels in this place.

“How would you know, you haven’t been there!” you might be asking yourself right about now.  My wife and her mother reportedly visited the gardens many times during my wife’s younger days growing up in the Bay area, and when researching it on the internet this evening, I saw countless testimonials of the power and majesty this place possesses.  Some went so far as to say that it has such a quieting effect on people that all you really hear when you’re visiting is the click of cameras. Still others swear that even though thousands upon thousands visit the gardens every year, you can always seem to find a place of your own without disturbances.

With the countless cultural, historical, and recreational attractions in Golden Gate Park, you can’t possibly be disappointed if you decide to visit.  And what better way to experience some Japanese culture without coughing up the money for tickets to Japan? The admission price is very reasonable considering the sheer number of plants that must be tended to on a regular basis — surely a labor of love.



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