Kiyosumi Gardens: A lush oasis in the heart of Tokyo

Kiyosumi Garden, Photo by Sarah B. Hodge
Kiyosumi Garden, Photo by Sarah B. Hodge

Kiyosumi Gardens: A lush oasis in the heart of Tokyo

by Sarah B. Hodge
Stripes Japan

One of Tokyo’s best-kept (and most affordable) secrets, these lovely strolling gardens in the heart of Tokyo are easily accessible via metro station Kiyosumi-Shirakawa on the Oedo Line.

In 1878, Mitsubishi founder Iwasaki Yatarō selected this location in Fukagawa to create a garden for his employees and for entertaining important guests. The garden first opened in 1880 as “Fukagawa Shimbokuen.” Water from the Sumida River was diverted to enlarge the pond, and over time, hills and dry waterfalls were created using famous and valuable landscape stones from across Japan. Later donated to the city of Tokyo, Kiyosumi Gardens opened to the public in 1932 and was designated as a Tokyo Metropolitan Place of Scenic Beauty on March 31, 1979.

The gardens feature numerous stone lanterns, pagodas, bridges, and iso-watari, unique stepping stone pathways that create beautiful mirrored reflections. Each step offers the viewer a constantly changing landscape. In the center of the pond is a sukiya-style teahouse that can be rented out for special events.

 

Kiyosumi Gardens

Address: 3-3-9 Kiyosumi, Koto-ku, Tokyo 135-0024

Hours: Open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Entry until 4:30 p.m.)

Closed: Year-end holidays (Dec. 29 to Jan. 1)

Access:

- Toei Oedo Line and Tokyo Metro Hanzomon Line, Kiyosumi-shirakawa Sta. (3 minutes on foot)

- Toei Bus Line: JR Kameido Sta., North Exit, #7 Bus Stop (Line #33). Take the Toyoumi-suisan-futo bus; get off at Kiyosumiteien-mae (3 minutes on foot).

*No parking available

Entrance fee: 150 yen

URL (English): teien.tokyo-park.or.jp/en/kiyosumi/

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