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Anderson Japanese Gardens
Vacation Travel Guide

Anderson Japanese Gardens showing a waterfall and fall colors

Rockford’s iconic gardens may be in the heartland of America, but you’ll feel transported to Japan as you explore the winding paths, ponds and waterfalls.

Discover an authentic piece of the Far East in northeastern Illinois at Anderson Japanese Gardens. Take a leisurely, self-guided tour through the serene surroundings. Explore 12 acres (5 hectares) of rock formations, ponds, beautifully tended plants and other fascinating attractions.

Before you start your garden tour, stop in the Gift Shop and purchase food for the koi. Toss it in the ponds and see the water ripple with activity as the large, colorful fish surface to feast.

Walk along beautifully landscaped paths winding around waterfalls, ponds and rock formations. See small pagodas and other Sukiya-style buildings throughout the gardens. This traditional architectural style, popular in Japan in the 16th century, features simple lines and airy spaces.

Japanese maples, pines and a variety of bright flowers make the gardens burst with colors. Blue irises bring spring beauty while red maples reflect in autumn waters. Admire the bronze angel sculptures by Carl Milles in the Garden of Reflection. See fish surface to snack on beetles. Continue over the Cypress Bridge, past tumbling waterfalls and Sukiya-style teahouses and guesthouses. Walk around the serene Pond Strolling Garden or simply sit on the pond’s shores and relax.

Reserve a spot on a guided group tour or allow at least an hour to visit the gardens on your own. The gardens offer such a pleasant and relaxing environment that you will want to take your time strolling leisurely along the paths. Get refreshments at the on-site restaurant, Fresco at the Gardens. Sit inside or outside to enjoy breakfast, lunch or a tasty snack. The restaurant is open year-round.

Drive under 2 hours west from Chicago to visit Anderson Japanese Gardens in Rockford daily from May through October. Purchase your entry ticket at the front desk or become an Anderson Japanese Gardens Member for complimentary admission. Children under 5 years of age have free admission and seniors and students pay a reduced rate. The paths throughout the gardens are covered in crushed stones, making most of it accessible for strollers and wheelchairs. Inquire through the website if you’re interested in reserving the gardens for weddings and wedding photography.

Top things to do in Anderson Japanese Gardens

Top Hotels Close to Anderson Japanese Gardens

Relaxing Ranch In NE Rockford
Relaxing Ranch In NE Rockford
Rockford, IL
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This family-friendly Rockford vacation home is within 3 mi (5 km) of Anderson Japanese Gardens, Burpee Museum of Natural History, and Discovery Center Museum. ...
4.7/5Exceptional! (30 reviews)
Great property!
"We had an awesome visit to Rockford. This is a really great place to stay. Loved the location and all the little extras provided in the house. We will definitely stay here again."

Reviewed on Mar 19, 2019

Relaxing Ranch In NE Rockford
Embassy Suites by Hilton Rockford Riverfront
Embassy Suites by Hilton Rockford Riverfront
3.5 out of 5
416 S Main Street, Rockford, IL
Free CancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is $138 per night from Apr 28 to Apr 29
Located in Downtown Rockford, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of BMO Harris Bank Center and Coronado Performing Arts Center. Veterans Memorial Hall and ...
4.6/5Wonderful! (54 reviews)
"The staff is super friendly. The hotel its self is absolutely gorgeous. Our room was very nice and super clean! We’ll definitely be back!"

Reviewed on Mar 22, 2021

Embassy Suites by Hilton Rockford Riverfront
Riverview Inn & Suites, Ascend Hotel Collection
Riverview Inn & Suites, Ascend Hotel Collection
3 out of 5
700 W Riverside Blvd, Rockford, IL
The price is $94 per night from Apr 25 to Apr 26
Situated on the waterfront, this hotel is within 3 mi (5 km) of Wesley Willows Town Center, Javon Bea Hospital - Rockton, and Mercyhealth. Anderson Japanese ...
4.4/5Wonderful! (351 reviews)
"The COVID issues make the amenities non-existent. Think they are going a bit overboard on precautions but get it."

Reviewed on Apr 13, 2021

Riverview Inn & Suites, Ascend Hotel Collection
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Top Anderson Japanese Gardens Flight + Hotel Deals

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Reviews of Anderson Japanese Gardens

4.6

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
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5 - Excellent 71.42857142857143%
4 - Good
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4 - Good 16.666666666666668%
3 - Okay
5
3 - Okay 11.904761904761905%
2 - Disappointing
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2 - Disappointing 0%
1 - Terrible
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3/5 - Okay

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May 11, 2020

Good

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Best Lodging Options Near Anderson Japanese Gardens

Relaxing Ranch In NE Rockford
Relaxing Ranch In NE Rockford
Rockford, IL
Relaxing Ranch In NE Rockford
Embassy Suites by Hilton Rockford Riverfront
Embassy Suites by Hilton Rockford Riverfront
3.5 out of 5
416 S Main Street, Rockford, IL
The price is $138 per night from Apr 28 to Apr 29
Embassy Suites by Hilton Rockford Riverfront
Riverview Inn & Suites, Ascend Hotel Collection
Riverview Inn & Suites, Ascend Hotel Collection
3 out of 5
700 W Riverside Blvd, Rockford, IL
The price is $94 per night from Apr 25 to Apr 26
Riverview Inn & Suites, Ascend Hotel Collection
Courtyard by Marriott Rockford
Courtyard by Marriott Rockford
3 out of 5
7676 E State St, Rockford, IL
The price is $78 per night from May 9 to May 10
Courtyard by Marriott Rockford
Alpine Inn Rockford
Alpine Inn Rockford
2.5 out of 5
4404 East State Street, Rockford, IL
The price is $62 per night from Apr 25 to Apr 26
Alpine Inn Rockford
Motel 6 Rockford, IL
Motel 6 Rockford, IL
2 out of 5
4850 E State Street, Rockford, IL
The price is $58 per night from Apr 25 to Apr 26
Motel 6 Rockford, IL
Rodeway Inn
Rodeway Inn
2 out of 5
4605 East State Street, Rockford, IL
The price is $75 per night from Apr 25 to Apr 26
Rodeway Inn
Sedona of Rockford- Rockford's Hidden Gem!
Sedona of Rockford- Rockford's Hidden Gem!
Rockford, IL
The price is $280 per night from May 17 to May 18
Sedona of Rockford- Rockford's Hidden Gem!
Studio 6 Rockford, IL
Studio 6 Rockford, IL
2.5 out of 5
4850 East State Street, Rockford, IL
The price is $75 per night from Apr 24 to Apr 25
Studio 6 Rockford, IL
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.