A few weeks ago I wrote about one of my favorite green spaces in Buenos Aires, El Rosedal in Bosques de Palermo near where I live. On Saturday I visited the Japanese Garden (Jardín Japonés), also located within the park, to see the orchid show entitled “Otoño con Orquídeas.”
When R arrived last Monday it was cold, windy, and grey all over the city. But after a few days of chilly winds the deep blue skies I love so much here in Buenos Aires returned and the sun came out shining again. Saturday was a gorgeous day to take a leisurely walk through the tranquil grounds of Jardín Japonés. I’d been meaning to visit this little zen oasis for a while but just hadn’t gotten around to it. There are always fun and interesting events at the garden; they offer numerous educational programs like learning the art of origami, Japanese dances, shiastu sessions, and traditional tea ceremonies. A few weeks ago they even had sumo wrestlers and organized a full day of events to commemorate the one year anniversary of the tsunami. This past weekend, it was all about orchids.
Jardín Japonés was constructed in 1967 to mark the visits by then-Crown Prince Akihito and Crown Princess Michiko (the first commoner to marry into the Japanese imperial family). The garden was relatively small but very pretty. I really enjoyed seeing the simple Asian landscape against the tall concrete apartment buildings of Buenos Aires.
As we strolled the grounds we found a few things a bit amiss and R commented as such. Most Japanese gardens, as in Chinese gardens, there are no dead-ends, i.e. the path loops around and you never take the same way to return on your journey. I love this idea of always moving forward but here we encountered a number of dead-ends and found ourselves backtracking several times. I don’t know much about gardening or about Japanese gardens, but this is Argentina! I wouldn’t have expected the kind of absolute meticulousness found in Kyoto or Tokyo here. I was just delighted to have been to this beautiful garden on a gorgeous day.
The Japanese restaurant was packed but we had no intention of having sushi or Japanese food so we headed out and did the polar opposite for our lunch- parrilla completa at Las Cabras. I’m still trying to digest that meal and possibly want to forget it ever happened so I won’t go into it. Let me just leave this peaceful post by saying that the Jardín Japonés is a lovely place to visit. I would love to return on a week day with a book and spend an afternoon there. I can only imagine how beautiful it would be to see all the flowers bloom in the spring.
Jardín Japonés: Av. Figueroa Alcorta and Av. Casares, Palermo; 10:00 to 18:00 everyday