Flip open a travel guide and visit any of the randomly selected places of interest which might bring you unexpected surprises!
Located in Takamstau City of Kagawa Prefecture, Ritsurin Garden has a history of almost 400 years and occupies an area of 75 hectares (almost equivalent to 3 Victoria Parks in Hong Kong).
The feudal lord of Sanuki, Ikoma Takatoshi, began building the garden in 1625. The garden was finally completed in 1724 after 100 years of improvements and extensions made by the successive lords. The garden used the beautiful greenery of Mt. Shiun as a backdrop and comprises of 6 ponds and 13 man-made hills. In 1871, the garden was taken over by the Meiji Government. In 1875, the government renamed it “Ritsurin Garden”, designated it as a prefectural garden and opened its gates to the public.
Hiraiho is one of the highest points of the garden. When one is on top of the hill, one can see Mt Shiun in the background with Nan-ko (Southern Lake), beautifully arched Engetsu Bridge. And the 3 man-made lakes in the foreground. This is the signature view of Ritsurin Garden. Besides enjoying the scenery, one can grab a bite from one of the shops or feed the numerous Kois in the ponds.
I had visited Kenroku-en, which is one of the Three Great Gardens of Japan. Compared to Kenroku-en, Ritsurin Garden is not as famous but the architectural designs and park layout are as good.
I didn’t intend on visiting Ritsurin Garden but as I have a 2 hour time slot, I decided to check it out after flipping through my travel guide. Little did I expect that this detour brought me many pleasant surprises. It seems like no plan is a good plan (maybe).
3 minutes on foot from Ritsurin Koen Station on the JR Line;
10 minutes on foot from Ritsurin Koen Station on the Takamatsu-Kotohira Electric Railroad Line.
Entrance Fees: Adult: 400 yen