The beautiful Nitobe Memorial Garden is a place of peace and reflection in honor of Dr. Inazō Nitobe. Dr. Nitobe's vision was to build a proverbial bridge between Japanese and Western cultures. In the late 19th century, the gap between the two cultures was much wider than today. Dr. Nitobe's life's work helped to close this gap. The garden, though a memorial, keeps Nitobe's vision alive and progressing. The understanding of Japanese culture multiplies as the number of visitors to the garden grows.
The garden's construction was thoughtfully planned with contributions and support from the Japanese government to ensure that each element of the garden accurately reflects Japanese culture. The atmosphere is reverential and tranquil. A central feature of the garden is the tea house. Here, you can participate in the ancient practice of a tea ceremony. As the bowl is passed from person to person, there's a feeling of connectedness and gratitude for the sharing of such a culturally sacred ritual.
The Nitobe Memorial Garden is part of the University of British Columbia's Botanical Garden—the oldest in Canada. Offering year-round entry, both the Botanical Garden and Nitobe Memorial Garden are a feast for the senses. Even in the winter months nature serves up fantastic foliage! Take in the charming cherry blossoms in spring and witness the magic of the turning leaves in autumn. There are a koi pond and waterfalls to add to the ambiance. Walk across carefully placed stones from one area of the garden to the next and take time to relax and reflect.
Come visit this enchanted garden and experience the beauty of Japanese culture firsthand. For information on hours of operation, admission and more click the below!
Cover Image Credit: "Memorial stone at Nitobe Memorial Garden" by Ruth and Dave is licensed under CC BY 2.0