20 Breathtaking Japanese Gardens

Tranquility is right around the corner in Japan, and of the utmost importance. It’s a part of their culture and something we may never fully grasp, but we can still appreciate beauty – no matter its purpose or meaning. This is why we’ve come upw with this list of 20 stunning Japanese gardens; maybe they will inspire you. Enjoy!

20. Kajū-ji


The Kyoto-based Kajū-ji was founded in 900 by the then-emperor Daigo. and represents the hub for Shingon Buddhism.

19. Kennin-ji


The oldest Zen Buddhist temple in Kyoto, Kennin-Ji is home to two gardens: the “”Circle-Triangle-Square” garden and “The garden of the sound of the tide.” Incredible, isn’t it?

18. Kiyosumi Teien

Kiyosumi Teien

Initially owned by the founder of Mitsubishi, Kiyosumi Teien in Fukugawa (Tokyo) cover across 872,000 square feet. Just one person enjoying such views?

17. Kōmyō-in


One of the Tōfuku-ji sub-temples in Kyoto, Kōmyō-in was meticulously landscaped by Shigemori Mirei. It symbolizes the reflection of the moon in the ocean, and it’s a real-life piece of art.

16. Konchi-in


This sub-temple of Nanzen-ji was likely designed by the well-known Kobori Enshu, althojugh we’re not sure. It resembles landscape paintings and I’m guessint it took some effort to realize.

15. Kyū-Furukawa Teien

Kyū-Furukawa Teien

The “backyard” garden of Josiah Conder’s palatial Tokyo is simply stunning in the fall, when the Japanese maples turn in November/December and the rose garden blooms in October/November. Wonderful!

14. Kyū-Iwasaki-tei Teien

Kyū-Iwasaki-tei Teien

A piece of British architecture remains in Tokyo. It is the Kyū-Iwasaki-tei House, formerly owned by the Iwasaki family (of Mitsubishi acclaim). The garden itself consists of a lawn and some stonework from the Edo period, but the potential is immense.

13. Mirei Shigemori Garden Museum

Mirei Shigemori Garden Museum

So-named after Japanese garden designer Mirei Shigemori, the Garden Museum in Kyoto was built on an Edo-period property. It features two platforms for hosting tea ceremonies in addition to the peaceful gardens. Zen mood!

12. Mukōjima-Hyakkaen


The Mukōjima-Hyakkaen garden in Tokyo is the only remaining Japanese flower garden from the 1800’s. Just imagine the history and legacy of this place.

11. Namikawa Cloisonne Museum

Namikawa Cloisonne Museum

The former home-and-studio-turned-museum of artist Namikawa might be Kyoto’s best-kept secret. It’s a stunning, and a true piece of Japanse art.

10. Nezu Museum

Nezu Museum

When in Rome – meaning Japan – look for the incredible Japanese garden and walking path behind the jutting modern architecture of the Nezu Museum. It’s worth it, trust me..

9. Ninna-ji


A stone’s throw from some of the major touristy districts in Kyoto, Ninna-Jiis one of the oldest temples in the city and a UNESCO World Heritage site. Sadly, few tourists pay a visit.

8. Reiunin


Another wonderful sub-temple in Kyoto, Reiunin was built in 1526, while the gardens have only recently been revived. Obviously, they were worth the effort.

7. Sanzen-in


Just north of Kyoto, the temple of Sanzen-in stands proud. A national treasure and main attraction in the region, its grounds are littered with moss-covered laughing buddha, adding a playful flair to the peaceful ambience of the garden.

6. Shōsei-en


The Shōsei-en garden is part of the Eastern Temple of the Original Vow in Kyoto, and has remained unchanged since its original landscaping in 1641. Incredible!

5. Taizō-in


Wandering through the temple of Taizō-in in Kyoto is like entering a sublime picture. It would only seem right, as the grounds were designed not by a master gardener, but by painter Kano Motonobu.

4. Tōji-in


Possibly the best place to enjoy a day off is Tōji-in. It has been used as a secret retreat since the 1300’s.

3. Tokyo Imperial Palace Ninomaru Gardens

Tokyo Imperial Palace Ninomaru Gardens

Some of the most beautiful garden in Tokyo, the must-see Ninomaru Gardens are only open on New Years and the Emperors Birthday (December 23). Wonder why?

2. Tokyo National Museum

Tokyo National Museum

The oldest museum in Japan, and the greatest collection of Japanese art, are located here; within such a spectacular garden there is no room for second-class art.

1. Tonogayato Teien

Tonogayato Teien

A traditional strolling garden located in the heart of Kokubunji, Tokyo, Tonogayato Teien is home to a renowned Japanese wisteria tunnel. Oh, and this is also one of 374 official “Places of Scenic Beauty” around the country.

wonderful japanese gardens – Documentary | watch now

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