In 1915, the city requested a Japanese immigrant and his wife to transform an old rock quarry into a Japanese-styled garden, ... More
Japanese Tea Gardens (Sunken Gardens)
In 1915, the city requested a Japanese immigrant and his wife to transform an old rock quarry into a Japanese-styled garden, and a man named Mr. Kimi Eizo Jingu agreed to the task. He started with a rock house, which still stands today and is surrounded by winding pebble walkways, stone bridges, a waterfall and tranquil pools. His work transformed the old rock quarry into a garden filled with lily ponds and lush green vegetation. With the onset of World War II and the growing anti-Japanese sentiment that surrounded it, the city council changed the garden's name to "Chinese Sunken Garden." In 1983, the original name was finally restored.
The gardens and pathways are very beautiful and peaceful. There are many many 24 inch koi swimming in the beautiful ponds, Beautiful. If you want a relaxing afternoon to spend with a loved one, come here and don't miss going here if you visit San Antonio. It is very well worth taking the time for. A great place for a photo shoot, as there are numerous places that are truly beautiful.
I just took my daughter's class on a field trip there, and it was so beautiful! I've lived in SA for 6 years, and been to the zoo more times than I can count, but never made it over the Tea Gardens because I though it sounded boring. It was so lovely with the plants, the water, and the stonework. I was watching 30 3-through-7 year olds watch the fish, almost without moving, for a good 30 minutes. I would love to go without the entourage sometime soon and enjoy the peace and serenity I suspect you find there. Highly recommend! And you can't beat free :)
The tea garden is a beautiful facility. Once it is completed it will be that much more satisfying to visit. The majority of the plants are native to texas. The garden is created mostly with limestone, also native to TX. It's not very japanese, perhaps my expectations were too high but not even the bamboo was exotic. Overall a nice place to visit, just not alot of chinese or japanese appeal.
I love it, but parents of small children should factor in that it wasn't designed to be super kid safe. There are big big falls with no fence or wire or anything. So go anyways, but keep your children watched carefully. I love the place, so do the kids :)
I had met the children and grandchildren last night of the woman whose childhood home place this was before the gardens. They were here to help celebrate her birthday and the gardens. I believe she is now 85....how beautiful is that?!. Loved the Serene, peaceful, magical feel of the gardens. From the waterfall, to the lush gardens, and let's not forget the coy! So colorful. The gardens had many wide eyed children (and adults, I might add!) visiting today I think it has a walking path as well, but there were no visible signs of direction, so I couldn't tell. Path was well enough, though, that my heels, due to a last minute decision to visit today, made it fine!
Would recommend direction signs, perhaps plant life durectory, and occasional casual benches would help those who just like to enjoy the occasional moment :) Enchanting for all ages, and WELL worth your time to see.
Omg! We were in San Antonio for our firsts time and an extra day to do whatever so I got online and searched attractions and found the gardens. So I talked my husband into going and we were so pleasently surprised!! We have three young girls and got some amazing pics of them there!! Would definitly wanna go again!! Check it out and enjoy! :)
I hadn't been in many years and finally got to go back to visit last week with a friend. And was so pleasantly surprised! The huge ponds were so clear you could see all the Koi, turles and ducks enjoying the water and cool shade. The ponds were fed by a waterfall that flowed down through ferns and moss covered rocks. Could it be a few hundred feet high? Awesome anyway. Very relaxing and I could have stayed all day but had to get back to work. We walked through the whole gardens in about 35 minutes stopping here and there. Can't wait to go back to see it again. I also used to ride the skyride as a kid. That would be so cool to see back there again if it's possible. And the whole thing was free! Happy Trails, Tall Tales and Tickely Tails! Cowgirl Cheri
We went to the Japanese Tea Gardens last week while visiting San Antonio for the first time. The front part was closed off due to construction (they said until summer 2010) so that was sad. But once we got around it to the pagoda and beyond, it was very nice. I can imagine how great it will be in just a couple months when the trees are in bloom but even as is, it was very pretty. My six year old loved taking pictures with his "new" camera and liked seeing the fish and turtles. I would recommend going maybe late spring? but unfortunately we were only in the area for a week. It is not very convenient for wheelchairs or strollers (possible to see in most areas but not convenient) so that is something to keep in mind.
I was born & grew up in San Antonio in the mid 60's to late 60's. My memories of the gardens & zoo are of the skyride (which is no longer there) & the lushness of the Japanese Garden, the pond, fish, train ride. I was saddened by the decline of the place when I visited in in Sept '09. I did shed a tear because lots of things have been lost, the beauty & fun of it. They did have a skyride when I was a child but nothing remains of the once enjoyed ride. It was a treat my mother gave us 1 time a week. We would visit the zoo, ride the train, ride the skyride & visit the sunken gardens to feed the fish. You can never go back but it should have been kept up for future generations to enjoy. It is sad that a piece of history is lost. Even the carousel is gone. Windy
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