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Japanese Tea Garden, San Francisco

#5 of 70 in Parks in San Francisco
Garden · Hidden Gem · Nature / Park
Originally constructed in 1894 for the World's Fair, Japanese Tea Garden represents the oldest garden of its kind in the country--a mainstay of San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. Spread out over 2 hectares (5 acres), the garden features quaint bridges, traditional pagodas, stone pathways, koi ponds, and scores of plants and foliage native to Japan. You'll find that the garden lives up to its namesake as well: Stop for a cup of traditional Japanese brew at the on-site tea house. The gift shop offers different blends and tea sets, along with all of the accompanying ceramic wares. Arrange to visit Japanese Tea Garden and other attractions in San Francisco using our San Francisco route maker site.
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Japanese Tea Garden reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
3,304 reviews
  • The Tea Garden was full of color and peaceful. The pagoda is under restoration, but grounds are nicely kept. It isn't particularly impressive though. The main purpose of my post is to warn other...  more »
  • This Tea Garden is truly lovely and very tranquil. The surrounding park is equally lovely and well attended. However, WARNING:HAGIWARA ROAD is a Hot Spot for SMASH & GRAB break ins. Our car was hit.....  more »
  • The best time to go to the Japanese Tea Garden is most definitely in spring. We went the 3rd week in March 2021 and everything was blooming and green. We were also lucky to have great clear skies and....  more »
  • Very nice scenery. It is peaceful and relaxing. It does cost $9 for adult admission, however, which is probably a bit overpriced for the size of the place and how long it takes to go through the place. We were there for about 40 minutes, although you could probably spend more time there if you wanted-- especially if you spend some time in the outdoor cafe area. Also, it's worth noting that since the gardens are within Golden Gate Park, there are very places nearby that offer great scenery and tranquility that are free (but will require more effort to get to).
  • This place was awesome! They offer free admission if you enter before a certain time. The park it's located in was a nice walk while we waited for them to open. The gardens are so nice. There are a lot of cool buildings, a restaurant and gift shops. It's so peaceful and beautiful
  • This tranquil garden area will soothe your soul. There are lots of water areas with big colorful koi that show up great in photos. Japanese Bonsai looking trees dot the landscape. Concrete pagodas line the paths with the highlight being two big red structures at the top. You can stop and enjoy a cup of tea. The gift shop is VERY reasonably priced. People with mobility issues will have trouble with stairs and there are a few really narrow bridges. My wheelchair fit across these but just barely. Really we were able to visit almost every area in my wheelchair. There is ample handicap parking available just up from the Garden on the main road.
  • A must do if the SF area. Absolutely stunning. The beautiful architecture of this place along with the phenomenal foliage is something you'll remember forever. Parking can be tough and I recommend going during off peak times so you don't get rushed through the park.
  • A wonderful spot in Golden Gate Park right next to the De Young museum. There's a lot of great places to take pictures. They charge admission but it's worth it. Discount if you are a resident of San Francisco. The tea garden really does have a tea house. Great little place, having tea there is a great part of the experience. Nice selection of tea and snacks.

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