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Bunka Centre

Bunka Centre

Bunka, pronounced boon-kah, means culture in Japanese. As the garden is known as the “Gem of the South” the Nikka Yuko Bunka Centre will endeavour to engage the community and guests through cultural experiences and programs offered by the Society. The Bunka Centre will also provide space for the community to celebrate and gather for their own cultural purposes, events, and activities.

The Centre will be a hub for Henderson Lake users as a year-round space to enjoy, whether they are grabbing a coffee or tea from the café or immersing themselves in the interactive exhibits. In total, the
facility will include a dedicated exhibit space, two classroom/programming rooms, a café, and rentable spaces for meetings and community events, the largest with a capacity of 100 people.

Dr. Hironaka Garden Exhibition

Experience the history of Nikka Yuko inside the Dr. Robert Hironaka Exhibit Room. Featuring unique cultural artifacts donated to the Garden over the years.

Watch documentaries about Nikka Yuko’s history and development, including highlights from visits by members of the Japanese Imperial family.

The Dr. Robert Hironaka Exhibit Room is open during the Bunka Centre’s regular hours of operation.

Cleo’s Café

Come visit Cleo’s Café and enjoy amazing locally produced foods and drinks which include tea, hot chocolate, coffee, cookies, and so much more! Take the chance to view the beautiful artwork by Hinode displayed inside the café.

Spend time with your loved ones on the best patio in Lethbridge, just outside the café doors.

Nikka-Yuko-Japanese-Garden-Lethbridge-Grounds-Bunka Centre Caffeteria

Memory Capture Booth

Through a collaboration with the Nikkei Memory Capture Project, visitors to the Bunka Centre will be able to learn about the experiences of Japanese Canadians both through an interactive memory booth installation and a Time Map wall display that details the journey of Japanese Canadians in southern Alberta. 

Led by Drs. Carly Adams (University of Lethbridge) and Darren Aoki (University of Plymouth), this project is supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and the Arts and Humanities Research Council UK.

For more information, check out the Nikkei Memory Capture Project website:

Gift Shop

Looking for that perfect gift? We have just what you’re looking for. From post cards, calendars, chop sticks, lunchkits, books, fans, socks, and so much more!

You can check it out any time the Bunka Centre is open and you can find it right next to the box office.

Nikka-Yuko-Japanese-Garden-Lethbridge-Grounds-Bunka Center Giftshop

Our Mission

The Lethbridge & District Japanese Garden Society, celebrates the influences of people of Japanese ancestry, narrating the history of this region through garden architecture, the natural environment, and the culture in Southern Alberta.

Always a delight to visit the gardens. This year we took part in a Sake Tasting (highly recommend) and enjoyed the festival of lights. There's a great gift shop on site.
TheFoodietravelers V&K
TheFoodietravelers V&K
The winter festival is a nice way to spend 30 minutes of your time. Beautiful lights. If you purchase your tickets at the door you get a cookie and hot chocolate included with your admission price. That is not the same as the online price. It would be nice though if they added a few more places with a little more fires and it would also be nice if you could a full poop. But otherwise a nice little place.
Brenda Impey
Brenda Impey
Japanese Gardens Lethbridge are a delight! The winter lights festival 2024 was enchanting!
Sharalyn Patching
Sharalyn Patching
Beautiful. Loved Loved the theme this year seasons. Seasons in Canada 🇨🇦
Rajesh RJZ
Rajesh RJZ
A good place to visit a light show with family and friends as a relaxed night out. Don't expect big and fancy things. They do provide complimentary drinks and cookies :)
Michael Bruining
Michael Bruining
Went for the light display and it was beautiful. It was an awesome date activity after dinner when it was nice and dark. All the staff were super friendly and helpful.
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