Henry Homeyer from abc.net.au said that The Japanese Garden is a major drawcard for visitors to the Auburn Botanic Gardens, about 20km west of Sydney. It’s easy to see why. Generally associated with Shinto shrines, the impressive red “Torrii” gate marks the entry to the Japanese garden, and, just as it does in Japan, signifies the transition into a revered space. Large ornamental lake, traditional tea house, bridges, man-made waterfalls and seats encourage visitors to sit contemplatively and reflect. The design of this area draws inspiration from the famous Ryoan-ji Zen Buddhist Temple Garden in Kyoto, Japan, which can be seen through the “dry landscaping” elements of the garden. Raked “gravel”, small mountains, rock formations and the large stone steps across the lake area all draw inspiration from the kare-sansui (meaning traditional Japanese rock gardening). The result is peaceful, meditative, and evokes the essence of nature, rather than imitating it.