We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

The San Mateo Japanese Garden

Closed Now: 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Open today: 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Review Highlights
Beautiful serene spot

What a nice little serene space to enjoy. It’s not big but it is nice. It’s located inside of San... read more

Reviewed 2 days ago
San Mateo, California
via mobile
Lovely little hideaway green space

Enjoyed a leisurely walk through the garden - very nicely kept, shady rest and meditative! Nice way... read more

Reviewed August 19, 2018
Reading, Pennsylvania
via mobile
Read all 198 reviews
All photos (139)
Full view
Certificate of Excellence
Traveler Overview
  • Excellent60%
  • Very good35%
  • Average4%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible0%
Travelers talk about
“japanese garden”(46 reviews)
“central park”(50 reviews)
“tea house”(12 reviews)
Japanese garden located in Central Park, a tranquil spot among the high rise buildings.
Closed Now
Hours Today: 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
See all hours
Fifth Ave., San Mateo, CA
+1 415-377-4700
Reviews (198)
Filter reviews
190 results
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
More languages
Show reviews that mention
All reviews japanese garden central park tea house koi fish bamboo grove free admission hidden gem downtown area serene spot landscape architect imperial palace wedding photos lovely place to be community center flowering trees duck metered street parking
Updating list...
1 - 10 of 190 reviews
Reviewed 2 days ago via mobile

What a nice little serene space to enjoy. It’s not big but it is nice. It’s located inside of San Mateo Central Park. A nice place to come and walk around and sit for a bit to relax and get some zen time.

Thank princessjax29
Reviewed August 19, 2018 via mobile

Enjoyed a leisurely walk through the garden - very nicely kept, shady rest and meditative! Nice way to get “away” for a little break from the world

Thank GRiegel
Reviewed July 25, 2018 via mobile

The Japanese Garden is beautiful throughout the year. In the late Winter and early Spring the cherry blossoms are in bloom. The easy level walkways, large pond filled with many colorful koi, teahouse, pagoda, gazebo, shrine, artistic landscaping & lantern sculptures throughout the garden makes...More

Thank Larry-Calif
Reviewed July 10, 2018

this is a beautiful place to see. It is right in town, and it's within walking distance if you're in downtown San Mateo and feel up to going for a walk. beautiful plants and flowers

Thank Tiare P
Reviewed July 9, 2018

Great place to visit for pictures and for a walk. It is very nice. Great restaurants in the area for after

Thank randolphc129
Reviewed June 21, 2018 via mobile

Took our 6 yr old granddaughter here. She loved the koi, bridges and Japanese lanterns. Park is very small, so exlpoed it all, including lingering at several spots, in just 30 minutes. Parking is available for 50 cents an hour under the tennis courts that...More

1  Thank U1874WQdonnas
Reviewed June 19, 2018

WE come here nearly every weekend. The landscape is amazing and we love looking at the fish and relaxing. And it is totally free!! Best deal around--check it out!

Thank chesterchandler
Reviewed May 13, 2018 via mobile

One of the best locations to take wedding, graduation, or just family photos. It’s so beautiful and well maintained here. Plenty of parking. Check out this place

Thank pbsuchikul
Reviewed April 30, 2018 via mobile

truly a wonderful place to visit when in San Mateo. Lovely spot to stroll and enjoy the beautiful suroundings in the middle of the city.

Thank Amy M
Reviewed March 14, 2018

Great place to walk around and explore your thoughts. Walk around without your headset. Very well maintained.

Thank IamRS
View more reviews
Nearby HotelsSee all 12 nearby hotels
Americas Best Value Inn - San Mateo / San Francisco
32 reviews
1.17 miles away
Howard Johnson by Wyndham San Mateo
297 reviews
1.30 miles away
San Mateo SFO Airport Hotel
133 reviews
1.32 miles away
Holiday Inn San Mateo-San Francisco SFO
330 reviews
1.33 miles away
Nearby RestaurantsSee all 446 nearby restaurants
71 reviews
.25 miles away
Hotaru Japanese Restaurant
48 reviews
.23 miles away
Three Restaurant and Bar
58 reviews
.24 miles away
Champagne Seafood Restaurant
21 reviews
.26 miles away
Nearby AttractionsSee all 37 nearby attractions
Burlingame Museum of Pez Memorabilia
58 reviews
1.64 miles away
Coyote Point Recreation Area
173 reviews
1.81 miles away
98 reviews
1.81 miles away
Questions & Answers
Ask a question
April 23, 2017|
AnswerShow all 5 answers
Response from TeaHsu | Reviewed this property |
No, it's free. But pay attention to opening time.
March 3, 2017|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from KellyGram | Reviewed this property |
This park is located on El Camino Real, between 5th and 9th Aves. The Japanese Garden is located inside the park, directly behind (south) of the tennis courts on 5th. You can park under the tennis courts and take the south... More
September 22, 2016|
AnswerShow all 7 answers
Response from Bill S | Reviewed this property |
Didn't see this until another question was recently posed. Above answers are accurate. To paraphrase an old line... No service...but you can go shirtless and shoeless!