I wish I could claim more credit but we only found the New Otani garden because of a Skybus Stop. In a city full of fancy hotels, the New Otani is easy to miss. I’m so glad we didn’t as tucked behind the New Otani’s shopping arcade is a 400 year old Japanese Garden that is among my favorite memories of Japan.
Even better, visiting the New Otani garden doesn’t cost a thing. Tokyo is an expensive city in many respects, so finding a free attraction made a beautiful garden even more so.
The New Otani Garden dates from the 17th Century, when samurai lord Kato Kiyomasa had one of his houses on the site. It’s been in well-tended aristocratic hands ever since and has all the hallmarks of a classic Japanese Garden: sculptures, water features, gratuitous bridges, koi…and peace.
You can’t throw a rock in Japan without hitting a rock garden, but The New Otani’s is my favorite. You could even have lunch or dinner with a (very expensive) view. I’d skip the meal and take in the views for free.
Have you visited the New Otani garden? Do you have another garden to nominate as your favorite? Please share in the comments.
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