On Sunday afternoon, after braving the BART ride back to the airport to pick up our rental car, we stopped off at Golden Gate Park to visit the Japanese Tea Garden and the SF Botanical Gardens.
Eric remembered enjoying the Tea Gardens when he was there as a child, so we made it a priority to make it back.
We were able to find free parking on the street instead of having to park in the deck, so the $4 per person entry fee didn’t bother me that much. What did bug me was that the gardens were very crowded (not their fault) and didn’t seem very well maintained (definitely their fault).
The structures are lovely, however, and when you did find a little quiet way from all the people it was a nice setting.
Across the street, the SF Botanical Gardens were overall more impressive in terms of peacefulness and sheer amount of flowers.
The gardens are divided into regions sharing similar climates to Northern California—Chile, South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand. Easily a great way to spend an afternoon.
We saw lots of plants familiar to us from our trips to South Africa as well some new specimens, like this “big red” anigozanthos and marmalade bush.