Enjoy Roses and the Japanese Garden in Tokyo: Kyu Furukawa Teien
There may be many reasons for tourists from overseas to fall in love with Tokyo. One of the reasons may be because Tokyo is a city that has preserved many aspects from the past. Thus despite Tokyo being one of the most modern cities in the world, you can see elements of the current and the past coexisting in one city. Ancient Japanese culture in particular is distinct even through the eyes of visitors, and seeing this as an image right in front of your eyes should be a very interesting experience.
The Japanese garden is an example of an ancient Japanese culture that has lived on in the present era. It embodies the Japanese spirit and philosophy, and through looking at the garden, you will get a glimpse of something that is unique to Japan. There are Japanese gardens in various parts of Japan and there are over 10 gardens in Tokyo as well. One of these is the Kyu Furukawa Teien or Garden. Compared to other gardens, it is not so large, but it has unique features that cannot be seen elsewhere, and so it is extremely interesting. If you visit this Kyu Furukawa Garden, you will not only feel the Japanese spirit, you will feel the calming effect it can have on your body and mind.
What is the Kyu Furukawa Garden?
The Kyu Furukawa Garden is one of the Japanese gardens managed by the Tokyo Metropolitan Park Association. It is a popular sightseeing spot that is always crowded with many tourists. It is located in Nishigahara of Kita Ward in Tokyo. The closest train stations are the Kaminakazato Station of the JR Keihin-Tohoku Line or the Nishigahara Station of the Tokyo Metro Nanboku Line. There is another famous garden, Rikugien within walking distance, so it may be nice to enjoy these two gardens together. The admission fee for the Kyu Furukawa Garden is a relatively cheap 150 yen, making it a stress-free destination to visit. Information: Map
One main feature of the Kyu Furukawa Garden is that the garden exists on the slope of a small hill. On the very top of the hill is a western style house, with a western style garden below, and further below is the Japanese garden. This means that you will see a juxtaposition of Japanese and western styles on the same premise; a distinct feature you will not see elsewhere.
The Kyu Furukawa Garden was made in the early Taisho Period (1912-1926). At this time, western cultures had been coming into Japan and taking root. At the same time, traditional Japanese culture was not forgotten and continued to be passed down the generations. Given this cultural background of coexistence of Japanese and western, the Kyu Furukawa Garden reinforces this same idea. We would like to introduce some highlights of this interesting garden.
Absolutely Gorgeous! Roses in Full Bloom in Spring and Autumn
Similar to other gardens, this garden also has plum (ume) blossoms, cherry (sakura) blossoms, and you can also enjoy the fall foliage. However, the main highlight is the roses. There are several dozen kinds of roses that are planted here and come spring or autumn, the different colored flowers start blooming all at once.
It is a truly amazing sight and if you gaze at it along with the western style building, you may feel that it is a place outside of Japan or you may forget that you are in Japan. The gentle fragrance of the roses also adds to the very elegant mood. Within the garden, they offer items related to roses for sale such as potted roses and rose jam; they may be nice ideas for a souvenir. Please note though that picking the roses that are planted in the garden is absolutely forbidden. They do look beautiful, but you cannot take them home with you!
Serenity…To the Relaxed Mood of the Japanese Garden
If you walk through the rose garden, and under the trees, you will see the Japanese garden. Here, you will see that the atmosphere changes to a serene and uniquely Japanese atmosphere. There is a large pond in the center of the garden, surrounded by trees that are native to Japan such as momiji (maple) and pine. Large lanterns also appear here and there which adds to the atmosphere.
In the pond you will see koi-fish and turtles swimming gracefully. On the rock, there are egrets and ducks resting their feathers. Here you will see all the elements you will see in a traditional Japanese scene condensed into this one area. You can stroll along the pebbled walkway. Sit on the bench and take a deep breath; you are sure to be immersed in the serene atmosphere and feel completely relaxed.
Within Tokyo, there are other large scale gardens such as the Rikugien and the Hama-rikyu Garden that are in a more purely Japanese style. However, this Kyu Furukawa Garden is the only place where you can see the unique juxtaposition of Japanese and western styles in a garden. You can spend a relaxing day in the Japanese garden, or come in time for the roses and shoot away with your camera. Also, in the summer or winter, you will see different seasonal flowers so you can have a great time even if you were to come at a different time of the year. The Kyu Furukawa Garden can be enjoyable any time of the year, it’s highly recommended.