The Japanese Garden in Portland, Oregon


The Portland Japanese Garden first opened year-round in the winter of 1981/1982, but in 2015, the Garden partnered with world-renowned architect Kengo Kuma to expand its space and focus on Japanese arts and culture. In April 2017, the Garden opened the Cultural Village, a new series of buildings designed to complement the landscape and celebrate the Garden’s Japanese culture.


A Japanese garden design in Portland is a beautiful, spiritual retreat that incorporates traditional elements from the Japanese style. It comprises five areas, including a zigzag bridge used to deflect evil, a tea house used for ritual tea ceremonies, a meditative raked sand garden, and a natural garden. These elements are meant to be seen and experienced physically, and the intention is to teach a sense of the interdependence of all life forms.

The Portland Japanese Garden contains over twelve acres of garden space and a Cultural Village. The Strolling Pond Garden’s largest Garden features multiple waterfalls and ponds, including a 100-year-old lantern that was a gift from the sister city of Sapporo, Japan. Other highlights include the Natural Garden, with multiple ponds and streams. The Garden is also home to several types of trees that are grown in their natural state.

The Peace Garden was founded in 1963 and included five garden styles. Each Garden has different purposes and uses. It was created to promote peace and reduce stress. There are stone paths and a zigzag bridge that connects the five areas. The Peace Garden is a tranquil space designed to help visitors shed their worries. Other garden styles include the Strolling Pond Garden and the Natural Garden, which include leafy trees and plants placed to depict the seasons.


The Japanese Garden in Portland, Oregon, is undergoing an expansion. This $33.5 million project, led by the Tokyo-based architecture firm Kengo Kuma and Associates, will add 11,000 square feet, three LEED-certified buildings, and seven additional garden spaces. The expansion includes a water garden and entry plaza and features traditional Japanese techniques and materials.

The expansion is the largest addition to the Portland Japanese Garden in 50 years. It includes adding four buildings, including a ticketing pavilion at street level and three smaller buildings on the hilltop entrance. The buildings have vegetative roofs and aluminum porch-like roofs that protect visitors from the elements. The buildings are spaced to open to the Garden and suggest a communal village.

Located next to Washington Park, the Portland Japanese Garden is considered the best of its kind outside of Japan. The gardens are a testament to Japanese culture and the pursuit of aesthetic beauty. The Garden’s first renovation in 50 years resulted from a collaboration between the Portland Japanese Garden and world-renowned Japanese architect Kengo Kuma. The design team doubled the Garden’s size and added a series of buildings to support its cultural mission.


Portland’s Japanese Garden is a well-curated space that tells a story through light, color, and the changing seasons. It also has a deeper meaning, inspired by the growing cultural ties between Oregon and Japan. It was built on the site of a former zoo in Washington Park.

The Portland Japanese Garden features many Japanese-native plants and a few non-native species. Its distinctive form, identity, and history have been preserved as much as possible. The Garden has changed over the years but maintains its original integrity. The most striking feature of the Japanese Garden in Portland is the Garden’s use of natural materials.

Millions of people have visited Portland’s Japanese Garden since it was created in 1967. It has also hosted many celebrities, including Bonnie Raitt, K.D. Lang, Sam Elliott, and Yul Brynner. You can even catch Martha Stewart at the Japanese Garden!

The Garden’s staff is active year-round, pruning and de-mossing deciduous trees after they bloom. The Garden’s staff is also busy with education and cultural programs.


The Japanese Garden in Portland celebrates five traditional festivals. These celebrations have been around since the 6th century. Visitors can stroll through the lantern-lit grounds while listening to traditional Japanese music. They can also enjoy a cup of tea while watching the harvest moon. In addition to these traditional festivals, the Japanese Garden in Portland hosts many different types of cultural events throughout the year.

If you are interested in Japanese culture, the Japanese Pavilion at the Portland Japanese Garden is the place to be. The Japanese Pavilion hosts cultural events, art exhibitions, and various activities every year. The Japanese Pavilion’s east veranda overlooks the city of Portland and Mount Hood. In addition, visitors can experience traditional Japanese ceremonies in an authentic Japanese-style garden.

The Garden is free to visit on certain days, usually between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. There are also many workshops, lectures, and art exhibits. The Portland Japanese Garden is a family-friendly place to visit.

Sukiya-zukuri architecture

Sukiya-zukuri architecture is a distinctive style of Japanese residential architecture that originated in Japan during the Sengoku period. It was created by the renowned tea master Sen no Rikyu, who served as Toyotomi Hideyoshi’s aesthetics advisor. The tea house aesthetics inspired the style, where the tea ceremony was an important part of life.

Sukiya-zukuri architecture is typically Japanese in origin and is characterized by a style that favors small, natural materials. The traditional style features earthen-plaster walls and wooden columns. It usually has a central column with a shelving alcove. The style is also influenced by the shoin-zukuri, or rules of placement.

Sukiya-zukuri architecture was first practiced in Japan during the Sengoku period, and today, it is still used for traditional Japanese houses. The style emphasizes unity between the Garden and home, focusing on beauty over prestige. Open spaces and small rooms also characterize it.

The Katsura complex comprises three shoin halls and various pavilions and tea houses. The structure is set among ponds and streams and features sukiya-zukuri style architecture. The middle shoin contains a tokonoma, a sleeping room, and a pantry. The shoin also has a window in an alcove.

Views of Mount Hood

The Japanese Garden is one of the most popular photo locations in Portland. It is open to the public and offers gorgeous views of Mount Hood. You can also enjoy free views of the city skyline from the nearby International Rose Test Garden. While you’re there, check out the Sand and Stone Garden. It offers a similar view to the Rose Garden but with better city skyline views.

This Garden is perched on a hillside that overlooks the city. The views of Mount Hood are spectacular, especially in the fall, when the Japanese maple is in its brightest yellow color. There are also handcraft workshops and rotating exhibitions at this location. It is a beautiful place to spend a sunny day or an evening, and you’ll feel refreshed as you walk among the trees.

A visit to the Japanese Garden in Portland is a unique experience. There are many garden areas to explore, including koi ponds, a gift shop, and an authentic Japanese tea house. In addition to the main Garden, there are two separate gardens – the Sand and Stone Garden and the Tea Garden. The landscape is breathtaking, and the view of Mount Hood is unmatched. Admission to the Portland Japanese Garden is free for children under five.

Cultural events held in the Garden

Located on 5.5 acres in the west hills of Portland, Oregon, the Japanese Garden is a quiet, curated oasis of beauty. It is maintained by the Japanese Garden Society of Oregon, a nonprofit organization founded in 1962. The Garden has more than 4,500 members and relies heavily on volunteers for its activities.

Visitors to the Japanese Garden can enjoy a variety of cultural events. Moonviewing, a tradition in which people walk under the full moon, is one such event. The Portland Japanese Garden schedules this annual tradition around the harvest moon, which occurs in September and early October. Visitors can enjoy lantern-lit strolls, authentic Japanese music, and traditional Japanese foods while watching the full moon at the Japanese Garden’s Pavilion.

The Japanese Garden was transformed into an educational, interpretive, and cultural hub in a recent expansion of the Garden. It blends contemporary design ideals with Japanese culture and materials. The new landscape features local granite and integrated water and geotechnical systems.