About Us

 

The Japanese Friendship Garden brings the essence of Japan to the desert, celebrating the spirit of understanding and promoting educational and cultural awareness between the East and West.

​Japanese Friendship Garden of Phoenix, named Ro Ho En is an authentic 3.5 acre Japanese Stroll Garden with tea garden and tea house. This tranquil and beautiful setting features more than 1,500 tons of hand-picked rock, stone footbridges, lanterns and more than 50 varieties of plants. As you stroll the path, you will enjoy flowing streams, a 12-foot waterfall, and a Koi pond with over 300 colorful Koi fish.

 

The Name - Ro Ho En​

The devoted and friendly relationship between the Sister Cities of Phoenix and Himeji, Japan is reflected in the name chosen by its creators.

鷺 RO Japanese word for Heron, a bird symbol of Himeji City. Shira Sagi Jou, or the  White Heron, is a 300-year-old medieval castle in Himeji.

鳳 HO Japanese word for the mythical Phoenix bird.

園 EN Japanese word for Garden.

About Sister Cities​​

​Himeji became a Phoenix Sister City in November 1976 and is one of nine Sister Cities around the globe. Phoenix and Himeji participate in business, governmental, cultural and educational exchanges that promote international goodwill and understanding. The Garden is the shared cultural vision of the cities of Phoenix and Himeji.

History of Ro Ho En

 

1987: Delegation from Himeji, Japan proposed that a Japanese Friendship Garden be constructed in the Central City.

 

1990: City of Himeji Landscape Architects visited Phoenix to present the design for the Japanese Friendship Garden.

 

2000: Completion of construction of the Japanese Friendship Garden.

 

2002: Garden opened to Public.

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**NO KOI FOOD SALES AT THIS TIME; NO OUTSIDE FOOD ALLOWED**

In order to monitor the health of our koi fish, we have suspended sales of koi food and ask visitors to not bring in outside food for them.  (e.g. bread, crackers, pet store food, etc). Thank you for your understanding.