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The 5 Best Hakone Gardens

The 5 Best Hakone Gardens

Hakone volcano has produced a caldera and hot springs since the first explosion of about 3,000 years ago. Hakone is like a huge garden itself and was designated as the Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park in 1936.

In Hakone, you can find many beautiful gardens. Since the Hakone Tozan Railroad had was laid in early 1900’s, top class business leaders and great novelists had summer villas here.

In winter, people visit Hakone for Onsen (hot springs). Some traditional Ryokan (Japanese style hotels) and the museums in Hakone have beautiful gardens.

Here are the 5 Best Garden recommendations:

Garden at Hakone Museum “Shinsenkyo”

Hakone Museum has a traditional garden called “Shinsenkyo” which is the most historical one in this area. This museum was opened in 1952. Mokichi Okada, founder of the museum, also made Shinsenkyo.  He carefully selected and arranged everything, even down to a single tree, the grass and even a single stone (harmonizing with nature). This whole garden is covered with moss. It is famous for its various kinds of moss in Japan.

Feel the profound silence and relax!

*From Hakone Yumoto station: Take a train bound for Gora and change at Gora to the Cable Car,  then get off at Kouenkami station.

*Admission fee:  \900

*Open hours: 9:30~16:00 Closed on every Thursday.

Hakone Kowakien “Horaien”

Hakone Kowakien is one of biggest hotels in Hakone.  It has a 16,000㎡ Japanese garden.

Formerly the  Mitsui Family, accumulated vast wealth before and after World War 2, and owned the garden.

In spring, you can enjoy the beautiful azalea flowers. In early summer, fireflies can be seen in the garden stream.

*From Hakone Yumoto station: Take a bus bound for Hakonemachi, and get off at Kowakien.

*Admission fee: Free

Onshi Hakone Koen Park

This park area had been an imperial villa. After the war, the Imperial family gave it to Kanagawa Prefecture in 1946. The Prefecture opened the land to the public as Onshi Hakone Koen Park.

Enjoy strolling along the paths and viewing Lake Ashi, Mount.Fuji, and seasonal flowers.

At the 2nd floor lounge of the Lakeside Observation Building, you can enjoy maccha (Japanese powdery green tea)!

*From Hakone Yumoto station: Take a bus bound for Hakonemachi, and get off at Onshi Kouen Mae.

*Admission fee: Free

*Open hours: 9:00~16:30 closed from 12/29 to 1/3

Tamadare Falls

Tamadere Falls is located in the grounds of Tenseien Ryokan (Japanese style hotel).

However, you can visit it even if you don’t stay there. Pass through the welcome gate beside this Ryokan, and the falls will come into view immediately. It is known not only as a power spot but also a nice photo spot.

Visit Tamadare Shrine which is next to the falls.  Enshrined there is a water, health and marriage god.  Ducks will welcome you. You will surely be impressed by the ducks quacking!

*From Hakone Yumoto station: 12 minutes walk along the Sukumo River

*Admission fee: Free

Hakone Garasunomori Museum   (Hakone Glass Museum)

This museum of glass has a large and beautiful garden where Venetian crystal artworks are displayed. The Museum has been built in Medieval European style. Its collection is 100 pieces of Venetian glassware that the European Aristocracy admired in that age.

You can also enjoy cappcino and sweets at the café from where you can see both the garden and mountain view.   If you are lucky, you may also get to experience like Italian music.

*From Hakone Yumoto station: Take a bus bound for Togendai, and get off at Hakone Garasunomori Mae.

*Admission fee: \1,500

*Open hours: 10:00~17:00

About kintaro63 (225 Articles)
Writer and teacher in Japan

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