Garden of Oz

http://blogging.la/archives/images/2006/05/IMG_3896-thumb.JPGHidden in the Hollywood Hills is the Garden of Oz, a place at once so accessible and spectacular that I debated whether or not to even mention it online.

Towards the end of a five mile hike below the Hollywood sign I bumped into this curiosity – a garden with a pathway literally paved with yellow bricks, overflowing with colorful flowers, and decorated with tiled mosaics and beaming with an energy of giddiness usually reserved for the holiday season or an acid trip. Outside the gate, locked unfortunately, is a mailbox that reads “Letters to Oz”, making me anticipate a crazy flying monkey that could swoop beside me to make a pick up and delivery at any time.

Since entry inside was restricted, I ignored the “no pictures” request, but spent a minute taking a closer look at what could be hundreds of small toys that were glued or otherwise embedded in the rockwork that lined the curb, from old Matchbox cars to the Sesame Street’s Count.

http://blogging.la/archives/images/2006/05/IMG_3888-thumb.JPGA little web research upon my return only made the Garden of Oz more legendary. Apparently the Great and Wonderful Oz has given all the children who live nearby a key to get inside whenever they please. And the Dali Llama once sent 15 of his monks to bless the garden which features menorahs, statues, and mandalas from all over the world. (source: Catherine Moye)

I won’t, however, reveal the exact address of this mini-paradise, and will leave local treasure hunters up to their own devices to find it. But if anyone happens to find a kid with a key who might be open for a bribe, let me know.

For a few more photos, click here.

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4 Replies to “Garden of Oz”

  1. Sadly, the Garden of Oz is no longer readily open for anyone to venture inside. I used to take out-of-town visitors there on the weekend, and we’d enjoy it from the inside… sadly, the owner began locking the gate about 6 years ago (I hear it’s because of vandalism).

  2. Come on Markland be man and jump the fence!!! Just kidding! Spent an hour or so there exploring with friend a few years back. The garden extends higher than you might think and every section has it’s own color scheme. A very magical place.

  3. We just got back from LA 6/4/06. A friend took us to OZ. My spouse’s 24 year old son thought it was the kind of scary place one gets lured to but I thought it was just plain WONDERFUL! I can’t wait to try some of this building & mosaic technique at home!

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