A National Historic Landmark, Brookgreen Gardens is one of the few institutions to be accredited by American Alliance of Museums and the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Its mission is to preserve and promote the sculptural, horticultural and ecological history of the southeastern U.S. At over 9,000 acres, Brookgreen is the largest outdoor sculpture garden in the country, featuring sculptures by American artists. This collection, numbering at 1,400 by 350 artists, is one of the best and biggest in the country. There are numerous themed gardens as well as a zoo, which features native and domesticated animals as well as an aviary. Bookgreen offers many educational programs for people of all ages including classes in sculpture, history, animals and horticulture.
The gardens was opened in 1931 by Anna and Archer Huntington and it was the first sculpture garden established in the country. Anna was a well-respected sculptor herself and her works are exhibited in museums across the country, as well as at Bookgreen. The Huntingtons built a single-story mansion across the highway called Atalaya and stayed there during the winters. Anna created many of the sculptors displayed at Bookgreens here.