Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens is a hidden Florida gem to visit. It is located west of Delray Beach in Palm Beach County. When you visit you will learn the mostly-unknown history of the link between a century-old connection between Japan and South Florida.
In 1904, a Japanese graduate of New York University returned to his homeland and brought back a group of local farmers to what is now Boca Raton. His vision was to organize a new way of agriculture that would revolutionize farming practices in Florida. The colony was called Yamato, an ancient name for Japan.
The original building, "Yamato-kan" opened in 1977 and features history of the Yamato Colony. It is an open-air building modeled after an authentic Japanese villa.
It hosts, Through the Eyes of a Child, is an interactive exhibit that allows visitors a glimpse of Japanese culture. The museum opened in 1993 because of popular demand, and offers rotating exhibits and audio-guided tours. The "Seishin-an" tea house performs authentic Japanese tea ceremonies monthly. The Morikami Collections house holds over 7,000 objects and artifacts, including a 500-piece collection of tea ceremony items, more than 200 pieces of textiles and fine art. Visitors can walk along 16 acres of breathtaking Japanese gardens and hike or picnic in the surrounding 200 acres of nature trails and pine forest. The Cornell Café offers pan-Asian cuisine.
The foundation highly values cultural education opportunities offering classes, speakers, workshops, meditation sessions, demonstrations, family events, group tours and educational outreach. The grant-funded summer "MORY" program allows the museum provide fun Japanese-culture activities for kids.
The museum is open from Tuesdays-Sundays from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and is closed most major holidays. Entry fees are $15 for adults and $9 for children. Senior citizens are $13 each. Weddings and private event hosting is also available on the grounds.
Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens
4000 Morikami Park Road, Delray Beach
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