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Ōzu’s elegant Garyū Sansō villa

HOME > Japan’s Local Treasures > Ōzu’s elegant Garyū Sansō villa


Immerse yourself in the wabi-sabi aesthetic at this rustic villa

Tourism Shikoku



Western Shikoku’s Ōzu City is known for its old town, home to several well-preserved historic buildings. Among these, Garyū Sansō stands out as a serene retreat, its meeting of traditional architecture and garden design creating a soothing atmosphere.

The gardens, designed to make the most of the scenic setting, were first created by Kanbei Watanabe in the late seventeenth century. In 1907 the villa was built, and named Garyū Sansō – meaning 'reclining dragon mountain retreat' – after nearby Mount Hōrai, which resembles a sleeping dragon.

You can easily see why the people of Ōzu have lovingly cared for Garyū Sansō over the years, its union of elegant villa and strolling garden creating a harmonious ambience. From the natural textures of its floorboards and tatami mats to the windows which perfectly frame the changing seasonal views, each element of the villa and tea house design has been created with delicate care. The gardens and buildings epitomize the Japanese aesthetic concept of wabi-sabi, which captures the beauty of transience and imperfection, purity and simplicity.

Whether you stroll through the gardens or sit with a cup of tea, you’ll find a meditative, healing atmosphere at Garyū Sansō.


How to get there


Located in Ōzu City, Shikoku, the villa is a 6 minute walk from Asamoya-mae bus stop on the Ōzu City Circular 'Gururin' bus route; Or a 7 minute walk from Ōzu-Honmachi bus stop on the Iyotetsu Nanyō and Uwajima Jidōsha bus routes.


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