San Antonio Japanese Tea Garden

tea gardens
Looking down at the Japanese Tea Gardens.

I'll be separating this into two posts. This post will be photos of the Japanese Tea Garden. The next post will be about the plants and whatever else was spotted at the Japanese Tea Garden. The photo above is a a portion of what you see when you enter the Tea Gardens and look downward at the paths and ponds. When entering the Tea Garden you go through up some stairs and arrive in this rock build structure. You have a few 2 path choices to go down to the gardens.

tea gardens
Looking up at the Stone Structure where we the entrance is.

This is the view when you are down at the pond in the gardens looking back at the stone structure. You can see the path to the left that most everyone walks down. The Japanese Tea Gardens reopened on March 8th 2008. Before that they were close because the gardens had been so vandalized and not taken care of. Thank goodness for all the volunteers and community members that did not want the gardens to never be seen again. Many volunteer hours and many dollars were put into reopening the tea gardens. I do hope that it does not return to it's old state where people vandalize and do not appreciate the gardens. Going to the Japanese Tea Gardens is free which is why it's so easy for it to be ruined. I believe that many gardens that are free to go to have this issue where they can easily be neglected and vandalized.

bridge tea gardens
Going towards the ivy covered bridge.

I'm a lover of ivy. I'm in love with the ivy covered bridge. You go over this bridge and into the center of the gardens were there is a winding path through trees and flowers that leads you towards the edge of the gardens and out.

bridge tea gardens
Another bridge leading to the center of the Japanese Tea Gardens.

This bridge made me worried. Not for myself of course but for families with children. I think their should be a railing or some thing so that kids don't fall in. The pond I don't think is deep there but I know some kid will eventually slip in there or fall. You could take this bridge back out of the center of the garden if you didn't want to go around the edge of the pond.

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Looking at the cliffs and the outside edge of the pond.

This is the view when you are walking away from the center of the tea gardens and out of the pond. You go over a stone bridge and against the ivy and plant covered side of the cliff. It's a nice view don't you think? You can see a path on the bottom I think. I didn't go that way so I didn't get to personally go that way. Then on top of the cliff there is a path that you can see all the gardens from. I went the path on top of the cliff.

waterfall tea gardens
Waterfall at the Tea Gardens and my husband.

After crossing the bridge and going through this little path that only fits one you end up a water fall. It's not a large waterfall but still a great one non the less. There is my husband looking at it. It's a pain to get pictures of him. He's like me and makes faces or shield his face when I point the camera at him. The only time I get any photos is if we are taking one of us together, when he's walking in front of me, or silhouette.

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All of the Japanese Tea Gardens from the path on the cliff.

On top of the cliff you can see all of the Tea Gardens. To the right is the stone bridge that takes you to the waterfall. The Tea Garden paths in the center are obscured by the wonderful full trees. I'm still amazed how just a month ago I was wondering why all the trees still looked so bare. I had remember getting to San Antonio last year the the end of March and everything being so green. Then one day I realized everything was green and so full again. When did that happen?

tea gardens
Looking down at the Tea Gardens.

This is just the same view but looking more towards the right.

pathway tea gardens
Pathway leading back in to the Tea Gardens.

After getting off the path on the cliff there was one path on the left leading to who knows where. The path on the right just lead back out of the Tea Gardens. Well I'm a person that likes to take paths through the woods even when I don't know where they will lead. So down the path me and my husband went. The whole ways down he was saying there was nothing down here. The whole way down I was saying I know there is nothing down here but I just want to walk. Plus going down this path I got to see more texas natives. There was mountain laurel, lantana, purple trailing lantana, and some extra large cacti/succulents. I'm sure there were more but I'm still trying to learn trees and shrubs.

I'll show pictures next post of what plants I saw in the garden and on the path.


Jane Marie said...

It's a lot to take in. I'll just say, Wow.

sara said...

I have visited the gardens and your photo's do it justice. This is a lovely site!

sara said...

Oops...I typed the URL wrong!

Zoƫ said...

Its fabulous - next best thing to being able to visit myself! Thanks for sharing all those images, its a very different kind of garden to one that you would see over here. I look forward to the next part!

Element said...

I have always wanted to visit the Tea Gardens. Every time I was in the area, it was always closed. Now that its open, I will have the chance to get down there and see the garden. Love the pictures! Makes we want to visit the Tea Garden even more.

Aunt Debbi/kurts mom said...

I wanted to see this garden during our vaction last summer. My men voted that idea down without discussion.

Vanillalotus said...

Jane- It looks like a lot but it's really a small garden.

Sara- Thank you. I always feel like when I take photos of areas it just doesn't give the same feeling as when I was there.

Zoe- That is how I feel reading your blog. The gardens in the UK are so different then the ones here. I feel like I have seen them when I read your visits of them.

Element- I'm not sure how long it has been closed for. I went there last year and it was closed. Now it's open and you should see it. It's really nice just small. I would recommend going there if you just want a relaxing day to sit around . You could then go to the zoo, the park, or the botanical gardens. I never get enough of visiting the botanical gardens. I would visit them more often if the traffic getting there wasn't so bad and if my husband ever wanted to go.

Aunt Debbi- The Tea Gardens were closed last year so you couldn't have seen them anyways. Next time you should go without them and they can go visit somewhere else. It's not big so it really doesn't take much time to see everything.

Annie in Austin said...

Thank you so much for posting these photos, Vanillalotus! We visited San Antonio in February and went to the Zoo. We also intended to visit these gardens and were surprised to find them closed. I will definitely have to get back, and will promise to be careful on the bridge ;-]

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

Dr.Gray said...

This place looks quite big. Much larger than the Japanese tea gardens in San Francisco. But I must say it looks hot, as in temperature.

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Men's Panties said...

That is a beautiful garden. It looks magical!

Anonymous said...

Garden Full Of Great Surprises great view and atmosphere from early morning (When Didn't have a curfew) But fun night or day :P~ Thanks ~Rainbow~