Hakone Moss Garden - Museum of Art(箱根美術館)

The moss garden of the Hakone Museum is a small mysterious landscape. Under 200 maple trees, small stone paths are winding through fields of moss. The climate of the Hakone mountains is perfect for the moss. During the rain season between June and July, the moss gets plenty of water to thrive, and the dappled shade of the momiji (紅葉, Japanese for maple tree) makes sure it gets enough light to be a bright green, but does not get burned by the strong Japanese summer sun. There are over 130 varieties of moss in the garden.

There is also a small Chinese bamboo garden and a Japanese landscape garden. You can have tea in the tea house Shinwatei (真和亭).

The museum was established in 1952 by Okada Mokichi(岡田茂吉, 1882-1955), a collector of Asian art. There is earthenware pottery from the Jomon period (13.000BC to 300BC) until the Edo period (1603-1868) on display.

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Directions

How to get there
A fast and uncomplicated way to get to the Hakone area is to take the Odakyu Bus from Shinjuku station in Tokyo. It leaves every 30 minutes and it takes around 2 hours under good traffic conditions. Get off at Togendai and get on the Hakone Ropeway, go to the last stop, Sounzan and change to the cute red Hakone Tozan Cable car. You can choose to either get off at Koenkami station and walk three minutes or go to Gora Station and walk uphill for ten minutes.

Another nice option is to take the Odakyu Railway ‘Romance Car’ from Shinjuku station to Hakone-Yumoto station. It takes about 90 minutes and costs 2020 Yen. From Hakone-Yumoto, you can get on the Hakone Tozan cable car and to Gora station and walk from there.

Admission
900 Yen

Opening hours
April-November: 9:30am to 4:30pm
December-March: 9:30am to 4:00pm

The garden is closed on every Thursday (except for November), and between December 25th and 31st and January 4th and 7th.

Address
EN: 1300 Gora, Hakone-machi Ashigarashimo-gun, Kanagawa 〒250-0408
JP: 〒250-0408 神奈川県足柄下郡箱根町強羅1300

Telephone
(0460)82-2623

Ryugon
  (龍言)

Ryugon is one of the most famous guesthouses in Japan.

It opened its doors as a guesthouse in 1969 after the construction began in 1964.

Utsugi Toshio, the founder of this traditional ryokan, saw a lot of houses in his hometown replaced by modern buildings when he returned from a longer stay out of town. After several unsuccessful attempts to convince the villagers to preserve the traditional buildings, he started to collect houses to combine them into a beautiful Japanese guesthouse.

In 2019 this hoary guesthouse in Niigata was temporarily closed and completely renovated to reopen in a new and beautiful look in the summer of the same year.

Although ryugon is now a luxury hotel, it still has the old charm. The best architects and interior designers have thought of how to transport the message of the Snow Country through material and shapes and the result is gorgeous.

Contents

Introduction
History of the guesthouse
Buildings
  -Chumon-zukuri-
  -The Gate Nagaya Mon
  -Kura Zashiki
  -Shin Zashiki
  -Onma Zashiki
  -Genkan

Rooms
  -Yucho no Ma
  -Keisetsu no Ma and Koshoin no Ma
  -Mushin no Ma
  -Kimigaya
  -Entsu no Ma
  -Meijuan

Gardens
  -Main Garden
  -The Courtyard Garden
  -The Front Garden
  -The Mountain-Stream Garden
  -The Tortoise Waterfall Garden

The Onsen Baths
  -Yawaragi no Yu
  -Madoka no Yu

From 龍言 to ryugon
Snow protection methods
Around ryugon
Access & General Information

15 pages
31 pictures & illustrations
15 MB
2020

eBook will be delivered as pdf.

Ryugon Video



Watch the Ryugon video here.


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Directions

How to get there
Take the Joetsu Shinkansen from Tokyo for one and a half hour and get off at Echigoyuzawa station.
If you booked a stay at the Ryokan, a shuttle service will wait for you in front of the station.
If you prefer to go by yourself by train, take the JR Joetsu Line until Muikamachi and walk for 20min into South-eastern direction or take a taxi (6min).

Costs
A stay at the Ryokan costs from $180 upwards.

Address
〒949-6611 新潟県南魚沼市坂戸1-6
1-6 Sakado, Minami-Uonuma, Niigata 949-6611
Tel.: 025-772-3470

Zuihō-in (Daitoku-ji)  (瑞峯院)

Zuihō-in is an extraordinary temple in Kyoto: It was founded by daimyo Otomo, who was one of the early Christians in Japan. He founded the temple as his family temple; he and his wife are buried here as well. Garden designer Shigemori Mirei, who created the gardens in 1961, included a Garden of the Cross and even a statue of the Virgin Mary in reference to the founder.

The temple itself was built in 1546, after the Onin war (1467-77), so many of its building have never burnt and are still in their original shape.

The main garden to the south of the Hōjō is called Dokuza-tei (独坐庭 ). The Chinese characters mean Alone-Sitting-Garden and refer to an Island of the Taoist mythology. From the famous Horai-Zan, the Mountain of the Blessed, a long and thin peninsula protrudes into the rough sea. Even further away is a single island, sitting alone in the rough waters of the wide sea. If you look at the garden, it is actually really easy to see the Horai-zan in the right-hand corner, the peninsula in front of it and the rough sea.

Contents

Introduction
Daitoku-ji
History of Zuihō-in
-Shigemori Mirei-
Buildings
   -Hōjō
   -Teahouse Yokei-an
   -Teahouse Anshō-ken
   -Teahouse Heisei-tai-an
   -Gates
Gardens
   -Entry Garden
   -Dokuza-tei
   -Kanmin-tei
   -Tea gardens
Anika’s Impressions
Recommendations around Zuihō-in
Access & General Information
Related eBooks

12 pages full of information about the temple
21 pictures of the gardens

PDF 15 MB

 
 

Zuiho-in Video

Watch the Zuiho-in video here.

  •  Click to view details

Directions

How to get there
Bus: Take the bus 205 or 206 and get off at the stop ‘Daitoku-ji’.
Subway: Take the Karasuma line to Kitaō-ji station and walk about 15 minutes in a westward direction.

Admission
400 Yen

Address
EN: 〒603-8231, Kyoto-Shi, Kita-Ku, Murasakino, 53 Daitoku-ji-Chō
JP: 〒603-8231, 京都市 北区 紫野 大徳寺町53

Telephone
075-491-1454

Opening hours
9am – 5pm

Mirei Shigemori Garden Museum  (重森三玲邸)

The Shigemori Residence is a traditional town house (Machi-ya) dating from the middle Edo period (1789). It has a garden and two tea ceremony pavilions, which both were designed by the famous modern Japanese garden scholar and designer Mirei Shigemori.

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eBook Coming…

Directions

How to get there
From Kyoto main station, take the city bus 206. Get off after 17 stops (32 minutes) at the bus stop Kyodai-Seimon-mae (京大正門前).
From there walk 260 meter to the east and turn right at the road fork.

Address
34 Kamiojicho, Yoshida Sakyoku, Kyoto 606-8312, Japan

Contact
Fax +81 (0)75 761 8776 E-mail shima753@hotmail.com


Due to limited access by reservation only.
Explanations in Japanese only.

Kennin-ji   (建仁寺)

Kennin-ji was built in 1202 and is Kyoto’s eldest Zen temple. It belongs to Kyoto’s Five Great Zen Temples after the Mountain system (Gozan – 号山).

There are two zen gardens: The Chou-on-tei,“The garden of the sound of the tide”, which has a San-zon-seki, a Buddhist triad stone arrangement and a Zenzen-seki for Sitting in Zazen meditation. The other garden is called “Circle-Triangle-Square” garden. The idea behind the“circle, triangle, square”is that all things in this universe can be represented by these forms.

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Directions

How to get there
Take the Kyoto city bus 4 from Kyoto station to Shijo-Kawaramachi-cho (四条河原町), it should take around 15 minutes. From there, got east over the Gion bridge. On the other side of the river, turn right and walk until you get to the next bridge. There, turn left and follow the street for 200 meters until you get to the entrance of Kennin-ji.

Opening times
March – October: 10am-5pm (last entrance 30 minutes earlier)
November – February: 10am-4:30pm (last entrance 30 minutes earlier)

Closed between December 28th and 31st

Admission
500 yen

Reiun-in (Tōfuku-ji)  (霊雲院 東福寺)

Reiun-in is a sub temple of Tofuku-ji temple of the Rinzai school of Zen Buddhism. It was built in 1526, and the gardens are said to have been built in 1543 (Muromachi period). Over the centuries, the gardens fell into disrepair and were renovated by the modern Japanese garden master Shigemori Mirei. The southern garden in front of the Shoin, the study, is called “Nine Mountains and Eight Seas”. Both this garden and the garden on the other side of the building clearly has “Shigemori” written all over it. He uses sand of different colors and curvilinear lines in his design.

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Directions

How to get there
Take the Nara line from Kyoto station towards Nara. Get off at the first stop, Tōfuku-ji, and walk in southern direction until you get to Tōfuku-ji.

Opening times
9am – 4pmt

Admission
300 yen

Kōmyō-in (Tōfuku-ji)  (光明院)

Kōmyō-in is one of Tofuku-ji temples sub-temples. It was founded in 1391 (Muromachi period) by Kinzan Myosho. In 1939, Shigemori Mirei laid out the dry landscape garden in front of the main building.

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Directions

How to get there
Take the Nara line from Kyoto station towards Nara. Get off at the first stop, Tōfuku-ji, and walk in southern direction until you get to Tōfuku-ji.

Opening times
8am – sunset

Admission
November: 300 yen
Rest of the year: donation

Tōfuku-ji – Garden of the Hōjō  (東福寺)

Tōfuku-ji is one of the Five Great Zen temples in the Kyoto Mountain system. It is a temple complex in southern Kyoto with 24 sub-temples.

Its garden were redesigned by the scholar Mirei Shigemori in the 1930s. He had studied the traditional Japanese gardens for decades before starting to design gardens himself. He built his designs on the old garden design principles, and connected them to the contemporary Japanese design of that time. The result are impressive gardens like the four gardens of Tōfuku-ji that surround the hōjō, the former head priest’s quarters.

Another remarkable feature of this tempe is the big mountain gate (山門 – San-mon) to the south of the garden. It is the oldest San-mon in Japan. The temple was built in 1236 (Kamakura period), and the founding priest is Enni Ben’en, a Japanese priest that went to China to study Zen buddhism. He is also believed to have imported the Udon wheat noodles, until today one of the most popular dishes in Japan.

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Directions

Take the Nara line from Kyoto station towards Nara. Get off at the first stop, Tōfuku-ji, and walk in southern direction until you get to the temple.

Admission
400 yen

Opening Times
April – October: 9am – 4:30pm
Novemer – early December: 8:30am – 4:30pm
mid December – to March: 9am – 4pm

Ryōgin-an (Tōfuku-ji)  (龍吟庵)

The Ryōgin-an is famous for its three gardens designed by the modern Japanese garden designer Shigemori Mirei in 1964. In contrast to the gardens, the temple and its buildings are really old. At first, it was the residence of the 3rd head priest of Tōfuku-ji, who also founded the famous temple complex Nanzen-ji. After his death in 1291, his quarters were converted into a temple in the late 14th century.

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Directions

Take the Nara line from Kyoto station towards Nara. Get off at the first stop, Tōfuku-ji, and walk in southern direction until you get to Tōfuku-ji.

Zuihō-in (Daitoku-ji)  (瑞峯院)

Zuihō-in is an extraordinary temple in Kyoto: It was founded by daimyo Otomo, who was one of the early Christians in Japan. He founded the temple as his family temple; he and his wife are buried here as well. Garden designer Shigemori Mirei, who created the gardens in 1961, included a Garden of the Cross and even a statue of the Virgin Mary in reference to the founder.

The temple itself was built in 1546, after the Onin war (1467-77), so many of its building have never burnt and are still in their original shape.

The main garden to the south of the Hōjō is called Dokuza-tei (独坐庭 ). The Chinese characters mean Alone-Sitting-Garden and refer to an Island of the Taoist mythology. From the famous Horai-Zan, the Mountain of the Blessed, a long and thin peninsula protrudes into the rough sea. Even further away is a single island, sitting alone in the rough waters of the wide sea. If you look at the garden, it is actually really easy to see the Horai-zan in the right-hand corner, the peninsula in front of it and the rough sea.

Contents

Introduction
Daitoku-ji
History of Zuihō-in
-Shigemori Mirei-
Buildings
   -Hōjō
   -Teahouse Yokei-an
   -Teahouse Anshō-ken
   -Teahouse Heisei-tai-an
   -Gates
Gardens
   -Entry Garden
   -Dokuza-tei
   -Kanmin-tei
   -Tea gardens
Anika’s Impressions
Recommendations around Zuihō-in
Access & General Information
Related eBooks

12 pages full of information about the temple
21 pictures of the gardens

PDF 15 MB

 
 

Zuiho-in Video

Watch the Zuiho-in video here.

  •  Click to view details

Directions

How to get there
Bus: Take the bus 205 or 206 and get off at the stop ‘Daitoku-ji’.
Subway: Take the Karasuma line to Kitaō-ji station and walk about 15 minutes in a westward direction.

Admission
400 Yen

Address
EN: 〒603-8231, Kyoto-Shi, Kita-Ku, Murasakino, 53 Daitoku-ji-Chō
JP: 〒603-8231, 京都市 北区 紫野 大徳寺町53

Telephone
075-491-1454

Opening hours
9am – 5pm