Sunken Garden winter cover

Sunken Garden at Warner Castle

Take a stroll behind Warner Castle & down the grassy lawn. There you will find the Sunken Garden—a peaceful retreat anytime of the year. It was added to the property in 1930 by Alling S. DeForest—landscape architect of the Eastman estate.

Located on the corner of Mt. Hope Ave. and Reservoir Ave., Warner Castle and its Sunken Garden are part of Highland Park.

If you are starting near Lamberton Conservatory, head down Reservoir Ave., crossing South Ave. toward Mt. Hope Ave. Stroll around to the back of the castle and down the lawn, and there you will find the garden. It is the perfect escape from the crowds at the Lilac Festival.

Summer shadows
The garden in winter
winter garden
Warner Castle Sunken Garden wooden bench
Sunken Garden at Warner Castle Rochester NY
Sunken Garden
Sunken Garden
Sunken Garden
Warner Castle Sunken Garden
Sunken Garden at Warner Castle Rochester NY

A popular place for solitude

Often, there are photographers taking wedding and family photos, like anywhere in Highland Park. If you can get there when no one else is about, it’s a peaceful retreat, beautiful anytime of the year.

Warner Castle
 Warner Castle
 Warner Castle

Warner Castle

The ability to step inside the castle is uncertain at the moment. Until late 2017, the castle was home to the Rochester Civic Garden Center. Now, the Landmark Society of Western New York calls it home.

Warner Castle garden wall
sunken garden forget me nots
sunken garden flower
sunken garden blossoms
sunken garden pathway

More information about the Warner Castle Sunken Garden

Cost: Free

Located in the City of Rochester (get directions)

Beyond the Sunken Garden

The garden in winter near Highland Bowl

Highland Bowl

Behind the garden, you’ll find Highland Park Bowl—an outdoor amphitheater used for summertime concerts, Shakespeare in the Bowl, and Movies in the Park.

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Lamberton Conservatory

Located in Highland Park, Lamberton Conservatory is the perfect place to enjoy a calm, colorful space warmed to tropical temperatures.

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Ellwanger Garden

While the Ellwanger Estate is private, the garden is maintained by the Landmark Society and is periodically open to the public for special events.

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Mount Hope Cemetery

It may seem odd to think of a cemetery as a family-friendly destination, but Mount Hope Cemetery is as park-like as Highland Park next door.

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2019 Lilac Festival in Rochester, NY

Highland Park draws crowds in the thousands during Rochester’s week-long Lilac Festival, though the lilacs are not the only sights to see!

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21 Monroe County Parks

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When is your favorite time to visit the Sunken Garden?

Share your thoughts with us in the comments. Your insight and experience is invaluable!


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COVID-19 NOTE: Some of the information you find in our articles may currently be inaccurate due to closures and cancellations.

Please follow the most current recommendations from the CDC and New York State for spending time away from your home. The great outdoors can provide a well needed respite & escape during stressful times. Please move quickly through parking lots, trail heads, and scenic areas. If crowded, choose a different park, trail, or time to visit. Please day trip responsibly.