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Published on 06.07.2016
Just a short walking from Shinjuku Station, visitors can reach Shinjuku Gyoen – one of the largest and the most popular parks inside of Tokyo.
Shinjuku Gyoen originated since the Edo time as a feudal lord's Tokyo residence. Later it was converted into a botanical garden before being transferred to the Imperial Family in 1903 who used it for recreation and the entertainment of guests. The park was almost completely destroyed during World War II, but was eventually rebuilt and reopened in 1949 as a public park.
Shinjuku Gyoen is 58.3 hectares in area with a circumference of 3.5 km and comprises of different gardens: Japanese Traditional Garden, French Formal, English Landscape and Mother and Child Forest. Among these, Japanese landscape garden is the oldest one featuring large ponds dotted with islands and bridges. A traditional Japanese tea house can be found within the gardens. The rest of the park consists of forested areas, lawns and several structures including a restaurant, an information center and an art gallery. There is also a beautiful greenhouse built in the 1950s, has a stock of over 1,700 tropical and subtropical plant species on permanent display.
From late March to early April, more than 400 trees blossom around the English garden turning the lawns into one of Tokyo's most well-known and pleasant cherry blossom viewing spots. In addition, the park has numerous early and late blooming cherry trees which provide an extended cherry blossom viewing season (from mid of March to late April) for those who miss the main season.
Shinjuku Gyoen is also nice to visit during autumn, typically from mid of November to mid of December, when the leaves turn into red. There are a lot of different types of trees that change colors around the park, however the maple trees are particularly beautiful and can be seen on the park's eastern side.
The garden has three gates: Shinjuku Gate, Okido Gate and Sendagaya Gate.
Shinjuku Gyoen is open from 9:00 to 16:30, from Tuesday to Sunday. (On Mondays the garden is closed, except during the cherry blossom and chrysanthemum seasons: late March - late April and early November respectively.)
The greenhouse is open from 9:30 until 16:00. The last admission is 16:00.
Admission fee is ¥200 for adults, ¥50 for children.