San Francisco Gardens: Hidden Gems, Global Blooms & Rooftop Treasures
Tucked into corners and sprawling through parks, San Francisco's gardens offer an escape into nature for locals and travelers alike. With temperate weather, mild winters, and dry summer create a fantastic setting for cultivating plants, and garden lovers will find an exhilarating array of natural wonderlands to explore. From tiny rooftop gardens to expansive botanical landscapes, discover inspiring San Francisco gardens where you can slow down and savor the moment.
San Francisco Botanical Gardens: 55 Acres of Global Plants & Flowers
Golden Gate Park is home to one of the greatest gardens in the world, the San Francisco Botanical Gardens. Featuring more than 50,000 plants from across the planet, the Garden is easy to explore with flat walking trails and plenty of signage. Grab a map at the entrance and explore garden after garden. The Bay Area's mild climate and coastal fog allow for a wide range of plants to be cultivated here, often far away from their natural habitats. Summertime is the perfect season to visit the San Francisco Botanical Gardens. The Garden of Fragrance is in full bloom with pelargoniums, salvias, and lavender. And don't miss the Andean Cloud Forest, which is filled with the bright colors of fuchsia flowers and angel's trumpets (brugmansias). But every season brings a unique landscape to this world-class attraction, which is home to two dozen gardens and attractions:
- Ancient Plant Garden
- Andean Cloud Forest
- Australia Garden
- California Native Garden
- Camellia Garden
- Children's Garden
- Chile Garden
- Conifer Lawn
- Exhibition Garden
- Fountain Plaza
- Garden of Fragrance
- Gondwana Circle
- Great Meadow
- McBean Wildfowl Pond
- Mediterranean Garden
- Mesoamerican Cloud Forest
- Moon Viewing Garden
- New Zealand Garden
- Redwood Grove
- Rhododendron Garden
- South Africa Garden
- Southeast Asia Cloud Forest
- Succulent Garden
- Zellerbach Garden of Perennials
- … plus much more!
Embrace Ultimate Tranquility at the Japanese Tea Garden
Immerse yourself in a peaceful, manicured oasis that feels balanced and serene. San Francisco's Japanese Tea Garden is a true gem, originally built in 1894 for the World's Fair. Also located in Golden Gate Park, it's immaculate and simply stunning, from the stone pagodas to the inviting teahouse that overlooks the south-facing pond. The Japanese Tea Garden is ideal for an afternoon meditation session or a morning stroll in the peace and quiet. Wander past koi ponds on winding paths, pause at the Zen garden, and be sure to take a picture of the beautiful temple gate. Cross bridges and look for statues of Buddhas. Cherry blossoms fill the air in the springtime, and bonsai trees delight young and old year-round. Let the beauty of nature to fill up your spirit and lift your soul.
Olive Trees, Sunshine, and Stellar Views at 343 Sansome Rooftop Garden
Did you know that there are secret rooftop gardens all over the city of San Francisco? Often privately owned but opened to the public, these gardens are called POPOs - privately owned, public open spaces. One of the best in the Financial District is located at 343 Sansome Street. Simply enter the lobby and ride the elevator to the 15th floor to reach the rooftop garden. It's a large, charming deck with ledge seating and a lush grove of olive trees. Tables and chairs make it a great picnic spot on sunny days, and the views of the Financial District are excellent. Want to find more POPOs? Simply Google "popos" to located more of these rooftop treasures.
Relax by the Waterfall in Yerba Buena Gardens
Surrounded by San Francisco's bustling Financial District, Yerba Buena Gardens are a natural sanctuary in the middle of the city hubbub. It's the perfect place to take a break from sightseeing or simply unwind and soak in the sights and sounds of the neighborhood. Listen to the waterfall and feel the energy rushing past you. Soak up a little sunshine from a grassy picnic sport. Yerba Buena Gardens covers two blocks and is connected by a pedestrian bridge. The sight of numerous festivals and special events, this unique urban green space offers visitors easy access to numerous restaurants, bakeries, cafes, and bars nearby.
Gaze up in Wonder at Graceful Trees in Redwood Park
You don't have to leave the city to see a grove of California's famously tall Redwood trees. Simply head to Redwood Park at the Transamerica Pyramid Center, a tiny half-acre oasis with great big trees that were transplanted from the Santa Cruz area. It's like stumbling onto a hidden treasure that feels like a secret gift from Mother Nature. Press pause on the day by the central fountain and relish your secret escape nestled between the skyscrapers of the Financial District.
Serene Boutique Accommodations in an Inviting Urban Hideaway
An appreciation for nature and natural beauty is a cornerstone of Japanese culture, and living in harmony inspires everything we do at Hotel Nikko
. Experience authentic Asian hospitality and the perfect blend of modern luxury and Eastern charm. Located steps away from Union Square, our serene oasis is close to many of the best San Francisco gardens, including Yerba Buena Gardens (0.5 miles), Redwood Park (1 mile), and the San Francisco Botanic Garden (3.8 miles). Immerse yourself in the vibrant heart of the city and explore all of the Bay Area's charms - from epic natural attractions to sizzling urban culture. Plan your ideal escape to San Francisco and discover the magic.