Okayama Korakuen is one of the 3 great gardens of Japan located in Okayama City (Okayama Prefecture) in the Chugoku region of Japan. A garden with elegance and beauty, it is one of three alongside Kairakuen in Mito (Ibaraki Prefecture) and Kenrokuen in Kanazawa (Ishikawa Prefecture), the other 2 great gardens of Japan. Within the garden, there are various natural landscapes and buildings to admire, as well as many frequent appealing events including ones where the entire garden is lit up at night.
About Okayama Korakuen
Okayama Korakuen was built in the year 1687 by the second feudal lord of the Okayama domain, Ikeda Tsunamasa. In the 1900s the garden received various damages due to things such as flooding and war, however, using imagery of the garden when it was first constructed it was reconstructed to an almost exact state as when it was first built. Also, through a special place of scenic beauty designated by Japan, it is a location that received 3 stars from Michelin Green Guide Japan.
Okayama Korakuen's Best Sights
Within the large garden, there are many different spots you can see and appreciate. With buildings that still, to this day, have the same construction from when they were first built, the different types of flowers that bloom depending on the time of the year you visit in, and the beautiful pond and artificial garden hill which is brimming with nature.
The Building Called the "Teahouse"
One of the buildings within the garden goes by the name "teahouse (Ochaya)". Starting with the Enyo-tei House which was the feudal lord's living room, it is a building that lets you feel the beauty of traditional Japanese design and complements the garden. The kind of views you can see and impressions the sights from here leaves are different depending on the person, so please, take your time and enjoy seeing all of the various buildings and the things they have to offer.
The Flowers Which Paint Each Season
The various flowers you can see depending on the season are just another of Okayama Korakuen's amazing sights. Just as an example, you can see over 280 "Yoshino Cherry" cherry blossom trees, or over 3000 Japanese iris flowers bloom at the same time, it is an overpowering beauty. You can see said cherry blossom trees from March through April, the Japanese iris typically blooms around the start of June.
Also, on the first Sunday of July every year, the sacred lotus flower blooms, and an event is held for this called "Kanrensetsu (Lotus Flower Viewing)" where you can see the first bloom. Seeing these flowers bloom at the break of dawn is not only a mysterious and mystical sight but will leave you wanting to come back next year to see it again.
Special Events Held at Night
At Okayama Korakuen, there are usually many events being held all the time. For example, during the night there is a special late-night garden opening event called "Garden of Dreams", which takes place in Spring, Autumn, and Summer where the entire garden is lit up. Surely this sight of a traditional Japanese garden lit up into a mystical scene that fascinates anyone and everyone.
Some of the other events include the opening of the teahouse and other buildings which are usually closed to the public, also including the setting free of the red-crowned crane which are being raised within the garden, each and every event has its own charm.
Okayama Korakuen's Opening Hours and Admission Fees
The times in which Okayama Korakuen is open varies depending on the time of year. from March the 20th until September the 30th it opens at 7:30 and closes at 18:00, from the 1st of October until the 19th of March it opens at 8:00 and closes at 17:00. The final admission into the garden is 15 minutes prior to closing.
The entrance fee is 410 yen per adult. (As of Oct 2019)
How to Get to Okayama Korakuen
There are various different ways to travel to Okayama Korakuen, but there is a direct bus which is very useful. You can ride it at bus terminal platform 1 from the east exit of the JR Okayama Station Korakuen and the bus arrives in around 10 minutes. It costs 100 yen per adult.
Furthermore, on the bus, you can use the free WiFi as well as read the on-hand leaflets filled with information.
- Spot name：Okayama Korakuen
- Street address：1-5 Korakuen, Kita-ku, Okayama-shi, Okayama, 703-8257
- Access：JR Okayama Station→[Bus bound for Fujiwara Danchi from bus terminal platform 1]Approx. 10 minutes→Okayama Korakuen Bus Stop… 1-minute walk
- Language：English, Chinese (Traditional and Simplified), Korean, Francais,
- Ticket Purchase：At acceptance
- Credit cards：VISA, MasterCard, JCB, AMERICAN EXPRESS, Diners Club International, Discover, UnionPay