There’s no better place to meditate in the city than the Japanese Garden in Jackson Park. Nestled just south of the Museum of Science and Industry, this hidden gem is steps from the rush of DuSable Lake Shore Drive  but feels a world away. You’ll find this exotic garden on the north end of the Wooded Island, which was built for the 1893 Columbian Exposition. Surrounded by a lagoon, it features traditional Japanese flora, a moon bridge, and a pavilion. In the spring, you can catch cherry trees blossoming, but there’s never a bad time to visit, especially if you need to clear your head. Whether you’re meditating, taking a peaceful stroll on the winding path circling the garden, or packing a picnic, the quiet of the Garden of the Phoenix offers serenity you won’t find elsewhere in Chicago. 6401 S. Stony Island Ave., Woodlawn