Bask in Traditional Beauty at a Vast Japanese Garden
Seasonal elegance and classic architecture are on full display at Sankeien in Yokohama
A Japanese garden changes subtly with the seasons; a particularly spacious and stunning example of this is Yokohama’s Sankeien. Constructed by silk merchant Sankei Hara over the course of 21 years in the early 1900s, the garden, part of which was a private sanctuary for the Hara family, is now open to the public throughout the year.
Repeat visits are recommended, as the landscape blooms and bursts forth with a variety of colors depending on the season. Spring is a highlight as the cherry blossoms shower the grounds with a flurry of pink petals, while the fall foliage display put on by the garden’s maples in late November is an equally stunning sight. Special events on the annual calendar include early-morning lotus blossom viewing in the summer.
The garden boasts a whopping 17 buildings of historical importance, an impressive feat for a site that experienced significant damage during World War II. The architecture highlights an Edo-period (1603-1867) gassho thatched roof-style home from Gifu Prefecture that was relocated to the garden in 1960, and a 15th-century,three-story pagoda relocated here from Kyoto's Tomyoji Temple, the oldest wooden structure of its kind in the Kanto area of eastern Japan.
Access: From Tokyo Station, take the Yokosuka Line to Yokohama Station (about 3
0 minutes), go to bus stop 2 at the east exit of Yokohama Station and take city bus No. 8 or No. 168 to the Sankeien Iriguchi stop (about 40 minutes), then walk five minutes.
58-1 Honmoku-Sannotani, Naka-ku, Yokohama-shi, Kanagawa-ken
|Approx. 1 hour or more