Photo:663highland via Wikimedia Commons

Genkyuen Garden: Hikone Castle's Landscape Garden of Feudal Japan

Genkyuen Garden is located on the grounds of Hikone Castle, and was the garden for the local feudal lord. It was built in the year 1677 by the fourth lord of Hikone, Ii Nao'oki (井伊直興). This landscape garden is a replica of "Omi Hakke" (Eight Views in Omi), itself inspired by the Chinese Imperial Villa "Eight Views of Xiaoxiang."

Genkyuen is a stroll garden with a central pond (a style called kaiyu-shiki, 回遊式), and features nine different bridges.

Many events are held throughout the year on the premises for tourists who can appreciate the scenery unique to a feudal lord's garden.

Open-air Tea Ceremony

You can enjoy an open-air tea ceremony, a performance of reed pipe with listening to the chirping of insects and Japanese music in the illuminated garden.

Autumn Colors

Hikone Castle as seen from Genkyuen Garden with autumn colors
Photo by Kim Unertl on Flickr

Genkyuen is especially beautiful in the fall, when many of the leaves turn brilliant red, orange and yellow. During this season the garden is lit up with lights at night, for a completely new and different experience. Seeing the fall colors reflected in the pond at night is breathtakingly beautiful.

The Views of Genkyuen

Each part of the garden has a particular name.



Gyoyakusho (魚躍沼)

Address: 3 Konkicho, Hikone, Shiga
Telephone: 0749-22-2742
Hours: 8:30–17:00 (open throughout the year)
Official website

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