11 Best Traditional Japanese Gardens in Tokyo to Experience the Nature in a Bustling City

11 Best Traditional Japanese Gardens in Tokyo to Experience the Nature in a Bustling City


Japanese traditional gardens are a beautiful part of its culture that has been highly valued and cherished by both Japanese and overseas travellers. Whether it is spring or autumn, its beauty never subsides. From the flowing ponds to stunning teahouses, Japanese gardens will not disappoint those who want to immerse themselves in pure breath of nature. Tokyo is definitely the place to be, the city has various famously known traditional gardens that are visited by thousands of people each day. Let’s take a look at some of the best Traditional Japanese Gardens in Tokyo. 




1. Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden


Photo: wikipedia


Shinjuku Gyoen stands as one of the largest and most popular parks in Tokyo. It is conveniently located near Shinjuku station, only about 10-minute walk from the station, which makes it a popular destination for a relaxing stroll among tourists. The Park has spacious lawns, wide walking paths and beautiful gardens, it offers a relaxing escape from the busy streets of Shinjuku.

During spring, Shinjuku Gyoen is one of the most popular places to visit to witness the most gorgeous and luscious cherry blossoms. The Park was first constructed in the Edo period, as a part of a residence for the feudal lords, it was later converted into a botanical garden that can be visited by the general public.





2. Showa Kinen Park


Photo: wikipedia


Showa Kinen Park is located in Tachikawa, about 15-minute walk from Tachikawa station. Surrounded by beautiful nature, the park has many facilities and shops that make for a perfect picnic date. There is also rental cycle that can be used to explore the park for additional fees. The enormous park is planted with different seasonal flowers that express its colours throughout the year.

          This Park is known for its relaxing and calming atmosphere, you will often see families and couples enjoying their dates. If you are around the area, this park is worth a visit for a relaxing evening.




3. Inokashira Park


Photo: thegate12


The Inokashira Park is often seen on TV for its beautiful cherry blossoms in the spring, the park is famous for its lovely greenery surrounded by large ponds. There are many restaurants and shops along the walkway. A great idea to make a quick stop for some delicious snacks to enjoyed while relaxing at the park. Inokashira Pond is located in the centre of the park, where you can hire rowing boats.

          It is a great place to fully absorb the Japanese nature and clean air, the park is also located closely to the Ghibli Museum, an awesome place for an adventurous date.


Photo: wikipedia




4. Hamarikyu Gardens


Photo: tokyotrip


Hamarikyu Garden is a beautiful landscape in the heart of Tokyo, located along the Tokyo Bay. A representative daimyo garden of the Edo period with a pond of Shioiri (Pond draws in sea water from Tokyo Bay) and two duck fields. A little history lesson, the park was built during Edo period and renovated as a garden for the Tokugawa Shogun family. The Park has beautiful traditional touches, with spring water gardens, bridges over the ponds, scattered teahouses, and artificial hills.

Additionally, the ponds in the garden are filled with sea water, making it is interesting to watch the water depth changes as the tide level changes. The garden is recommended for a peaceful picnic, due to its spacious nature, you will be able to find a spot with less people.


Photo: 公益財団法人東京都公園協会 




5. Happoen


Photo: happo-en


Happoen has a historical value for over 70 years, it is often used for shooting advertisements and magazines, as its elegant nature is recommended for overseas travellers. The garden features various traditional elements of Japanese culture including koi-filled ponds and a traditional tea house. Happoen includes several restaurants and cafes that are generally open to the public.

          Additionally, it is a good location for traditional weddings. Therefore, if you are lucky, you might get to witness a beautiful part of Japanese culture.


Photo: fashion-press




6. Imperial Palace East Imperial Garden


Photo: garden-guide


The Imperial Palace East Imperial Garden is a part of the inner palace area that is open to the public. A national historic park that was opened to preserve the remains of Edo Castle. The Park has beautiful lawns that are architecturally designed to express a calming and relaxing atmosphere. It has been well-maintained to preserve the nature surrounding the castle, planted with several seasonal flowers that bloom at least once a year.


Photo: garden-guide




7. Rikugien


Photo: thegate12


Rikugien is considered as one of Tokyo’s most beautiful parks. It was Built in the 17th for the 5th Tokugawa Shogun. The garden is representative of the Edo period, surrounded by duck ponds, manmade hills, connected trails and a large central pond. The Park itself is very spacious and it will take some time to explore all its wonderful glory. There is also a Fukiage Chaya teahouse, which is a great place to take some rest and have some tea for additional fees.

          Rikugien garden is visited throughout the year, however, autumn is a great time to witness the change colours of maples trees. A great place to get a fresh breath of air after a busy day. 


Photo: thegate12




8. Koishikawa Korakuen Gardens


Photo: travel


Koishikawa Korakuen is one of Tokyo’s oldest gardens with many historical values, it was built in the early Edo period. This traditional Japanese garden is surrounded by beautiful landscapes featuring ponds, manmade hills, seasonal flowers, and large stones. The garden is a popular tourists destination all year round, but it provides quite a spectacular sight during autumn, where enormous maples trees start showing its colours.

          Of course, if you are visiting Tokyo during cherry blossom season, you will have to visit this park. Dozens of cherry trees create a harmonise scenery that is both romantic and calming. 


Photo: thegate12




9. Hotel New Otani Japanese Garden


Photo: newotani


Take a stroll through Otani Japanese Garden in Hotel New to discover fascinating elements of Japanese tradition and heritage. Several antique stone lanterns and pagodas are found in the gardens, located along the pathways and slopes, or by the pond. This garden is believed to have been built in a historic period, the garden has been passed on from Kiyomasa Kato to the powerful li family. You can enjoy Japanese aesthetics that cannot be found elsewhere.


Photo: newotani




10. Kiyosumi Garden


Photo: wikipedia


Kiyosumi Garden was originally a part of the Sekiyado feudal lord, Kuze family residence. It has many features that of traditional Japanese gardens including artificial hills, ponds with spring water, and various stones. The landscaping technique was used in the daimyo gardens of the Edo period. When visiting the gardens, be sure to take a stroll along the steppingstone paths that are set in the middle of the large pond.

          There are also traditional Japanese teahouses that you can enjoy some tea with a great view. The garden can be quiet during the day, so it is recommended to visit the park earlier if you want to avoid the rush.


Photo: gotokyo




11. Arisugawa No Miya Memorial Park


Photo: arisugawa-park


Arisugawa-no-miya Memorial Park was the site of an urban villa that was used by Minonokami Nambu, a feudal lord from the Morioka domain. The Park is filled with greenery that will make you appreciate the true nature of Japan. There are many densely wooded areas in the park, with a brook that flows to the southwest pond.  


When passing through the main entrance of the park, you’ll experience a relaxing sensation from the calm reflections on the surface of the pond. This Park is exactly where you want to be for a peaceful afternoon.


Photo: visit-minato-city








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