Chickasaw Gardens is located between Central and Poplar Avenues, near the center of the Interstate 240 loop. The Memphis Pink Palace Museum and Planetarium, the Central Library of the Memphis Public Library System, and the University of Memphis are nearby.
Chickasaw Gardens features a lake, sometimes called Memphis Lake or Chickasaw Gardens Lake, home to ducks and other birds. There is a concrete path leading around the west side. Neither fishing nor boats are allowed.
Running parallel to the lake is a ditch, along the west side of the lake. It is surrounded by a fence. The west end goes to Orange Mound and under Central Avenue, while the east end goes under Poplar Avenue and beside the East High School football and track field. Crossing the ditch, there are vehicular bridges and a foot bridge — closer to the southeastern side of the lake, right beside the south car bridge.
Chickasaw Gardens is located on land that was originally part of the estate of Clarence Saunders, the Memphis inventor of the self-service grocery store. The Chickasaw Gardens lake was originally constructed as part of an elaborate garden, with rustic bridges and a playhouse for Saunders' children. Saunders lost his fortune in 1923, and the estate was sold to developers.