Visiting Rikugien Garden with My Host Fam (日記#24.5)

Hi! I’m back with the continuation of the last post about visiting the Tokyo Sky Tree with my host family. On November 20, 2016 we also visited the Rikugien Gardens located in Hon-Komagome in Tokyo. I am just going to give some background on the gardens and then let the pictures do the talking. All I really did with my host family was walk around and enjoy the changing autumn foliage so there’s not much more to say besides that.

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On the website for the garden it says:

This strolling, mountain and pond-style garden was created based on the theme of Waka poetry in the 15th year of the Genroku Period (1702) by the shogun, Tokugawa Tsunayoshi’s trusted confidante Yanagisawa Yoshiyasu.
This garden is a typical example of the famous gardens of Edo Period. In the Meiji Period, this garden became a second residence of the founder of Mitsubishi, Iwasaki Yataro. Later, in the 13th year of Showa (1938), the Iwasaki family donated this garden to the City of Tokyo, and in Showa 28 (1953) it was designated as a special site of exceptional beauty and an important cultural asset.
The name “Rikugien” refers to a system for dividing Chinese poetry into six categories. This system also influenced the division of Japanese Waka poetry as well. Although the number six is usually read “roku,” in the case of the garden’s name, it is pronounced “riku” in keeping with the Chinese pronunciation of the word.

There are about 8 different spots to see in the garden including a large weeping cherry tree near the central entrance gate, a small stone island, two tea houses, and my personal favorite–togetsukyo. Togetsukyo is the name for the stone bridge which was said to have been named after a famous poem about the view of the moon moving across the sky with the cry of a crane being heard coming from a nearby rice paddy. It was really beautiful especially with the shadows of the people crossing it reflected on the water.

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Well, that’s it from me so I am going to stop talking here. Please enjoy the pictures and I’ll try to write again soon! Coming up are posts about having a real Thanksgiving dinner with friends and our sudden snow day.

Thanks as always for reading and take care!

❤ Kira

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