10 Best Gardens in Osaka

Osaka
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Writer’s profile

Mao Goto is a Japanese freelancer who was born in Hayama, Kanagawa prefecture, and raised in Tokyo. Since 2016 she lives in the Taito Ward, home to a lot of Japanese culture hotspots such as Asakusa, Akihabara, and Ueno. She has been interested in the field of English education in Japan and got her Master’s degree in March 2020. A lover of photography, travel, sweets, and cross-stitch. Contact her via Facebook.

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Welcome to a memorable garden tour in Osaka! These gardens offer a harmonious blend of traditional Japanese beauty and nature, and offers a variety of seasonal expressions. Cherry blossoms in spring, greenery in summer, autumn leaves in fall, and snowy landscapes in winter – each season offers its own unique charm. Why not spend a peaceful moment in one of Osaka’s many gardens and experience a Japanese sense of beauty? In this article, we introduce 10 carefully selected gardens to give you a glimpse of Osaka’s hidden beauty.

1. Sakuya Konohanakan

The Sakuya Konohanakan is one of the largest greenhouse botanical gardens in Japan that shines in the Hanahaku Memorial Park. The name of this building is derived from an ancient poem. Upon entering, you will feel as if you have wandered into another world, where 15,000 plants of 5,500 species from all over the globe are coming back to life. The dreamy exterior of the pavilion exhibits over 5,000 pieces of glass; its beauty colored with fantastic images, such as water lilies floating on the surface of the water. This place is truly a paradise for plant lovers and adventurous travelers. Here, flora from all corners of the globe come together. Take a whimsical journey through the miracles of nature at the bold and fascinating Sakuya Konohanakan.

Official Website: Sakuya Konohanakan

I, KENPEI, CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

2. Keitakuen Garden

Keitakuen Garden, spread out in Tennoji Park, is a secluded, purely Japanese-style garden that boasts a tea ceremony room. Although this garden is located in the middle of the building district of Osaka, it is overflowing with greenery and is a peaceful and healing place not just for tourists but also locals. Keitakuen exudes a timeless charm of the traditional Japanese garden, with picturesque landscapes that captivate in every season. However, we do have an announcement to make: due to renovation work, Keitakuen will be temporarily closed from April 1, 2024. The garden is scheduled to reopen in the spring of 2025, returning with an even bigger allure and sense of beauty. 

Official Website: Keitakuen Garden

KimonBerlin, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

3. Osaka Castle Nishinomaru Garden

The lush green plaza in front of Osaka Castle is a special place that exhibits a constantly evolving beauty depending on the season. A lawn garden covering a total area of 64,000 square meters is open to the public, offering a panoramic view of the trees surrounding the castle, the beautiful castle tower, and the stone walls of the diggings. In spring, the plaza is truly a paradise of flowers, with the cherry blossom trees surrounding Osaka Castle in full bloom, attracting many onlookers. Amidst the blooming cherry blossoms, the historic Osaka Castle adds to this beautiful scenery. Osaka Castle Nishinomaru Garden is a rare spot where history and nature are in perfect harmony, and is a great place to hide out and enjoy the wonderful scenery of the four seasons.

Reginald Pentinio, CC BY 2.0 Deed, via Flickr

4. Fujita Museum

The Fujita Museum of Art is an exceptional space created to showcase the art collected by the Fujita Zaibatsu, one of Japan’s most prominent conglomerates; and its reopening in 2022 has made the Vista Museum of Art even more attractive. The building is unlike a typical art museum, boasting a design so extravagant, it is hard to fathom that this is a private residence. The Japanese-style garden seamlessly blends with the museum’s ambiance, becoming an integral part of the experience. The garden is so modern and Japanese in taste that it is almost as if you are visiting an opulent palace. The Fujita Museum of Art offers visitors a blissful experience with the fusion of art and nature in a luxurious setting. The artworks and the Japanese-style garden perfectly compliment one another, creating a beautiful feast of art and nature.

Official Website: Fujita Museum

663highland, CC BY 2.5, via Wikipedia

5. Gokuraku-jodo Garden

The “Gokuraku-jodo Garden” located in Shitennoji Temple is known as one of the most beautiful hidden gardens in Osaka. Shitennoji Temple was built by Prince Shotoku, and according to legend, has been passed down as one of Osaka’s representative temples. It is considered one of the oldest temples in Japan and is a place where one can feel the depth of history. This garden was created to express the metaphor of wishing for the Paradise of the Supreme Bliss, and takes advantage of spring water to create two ponds and springs called “Ruriko-no-ike (瑠璃光の池)” and “Gokuraku-no-ik みe (極楽の池)”. This garden is enriched with history and delivers a resonance of tranquility and beauty to visitors. The fresh greenery, the sound of water, and the traditional garden atmosphere promises visitors to Shitennoji a moment of peace and tranquility.

jpellgen (@1105_jp), CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 Deed, via Flickr

6. Daisen Garden

The garden spans across 26,000 square meters of stunningly landscaped grounds, crafted with traditional gardening methods. The backdrop of the distant Chinese mainland across the river offers a striking contrast to the renowned gardens crafted by feudal lords scattered across Japan. Characterized by its unique structure,different from traditional Japanese gardens, the beauty is overwhelming. This garden features a rest area modeled after the meeting place of Sakai’s wealthy merchants in the Middle Ages, as well as a place to enjoy nodate (outdoor tea ceremony) and bonsai exhibitions. This is a healing space where tradition and innovation are in perfect harmony, and visitors can appreciate the beauty of Japan and the depth of its history.

Official Website: Daisen Garden

Wei-Te Wong, CC BY-SA 2.0 Deed, via Flickr

7. Kishiwada Castle Garden (Hachijin Garden)

Kishiwada Castle Garden, also known as “Hachijin Garden,” was constructed  in 1953 by Mirei Shigemori, one of Japan’s most famous garden researchers and gardeners. Here, Japanese beauty is harmonized with a modern sense of style, creating an atmosphere that differs from that of a typical Japanese garden. The “Hachijin Garden” is inspired by the “Eight Formations” of Zhuge Liang, a hero of the Three Kingdoms of China. The masonry’s design is crafted to be admired from every angle, showcasing a captivating beauty that is truly worth experiencing. While retaining a sense of Japanese elements, a modern approach has been beautifully incorporated, providing visitors with a new, yet elegant, sensation.

KishujiRapid, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

8. Nagai Botanical Garden

The Nagai Botanical Garden, located in the southeast of Nagai Park, was opened for the purpose of learning from nature and cultivating a rich emotional life. The park will celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2025, showcasing how it has grown alongside its history. The vast 24.2-hectare site is beautifully planted with approximately 1,200 species of plants, and includes an appreciation garden, an educational garden, and various sample gardens. This botanical garden is a perfect place for visitors to learn about the diversity and charm of plants. The Nagai Botanical Garden is also famous for the sunflowers that bloom during summer. Spread over an area of approximately 2,000 square meters, a whopping 20,000 sunflowers are in full bloom during this season. When the sunflowers are in full bloom, special events are held for visitors to further enjoy this flower garden.

Official Website: Nagai Botanical Garden (Only in Japanese) 

Daderot, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

9. Soraku-en Garden

Let’s get away from Osaka and visit Kobe. Sorakuen Garden is a city park in Kobe and the only Japanese garden designated as a national monument. 500-year-old giant camphor trees, azalea blossoms in spring, and maple leaves in autumn color this garden. The garden attracts many guests thanks to its ever-changing, picturesque landscapes, each season offering a unique spectacle. The park is also lined with historic houses registered as Important Cultural Properties, filling the air with the fragrance of the past.

Official Website: Soraku-en Garden

Güldem Üstün, CC BY 2.0 Deed, via Flickr

10. Shuseki-tei – Hokoku Shrines Rock Garden

Hokoku Shrine is known as a shrine dedicated to Toyotomi Hideyoshi and the Toyotomi family. Among them, the Shuseki Garden is famous for its stone garden, also known as the 753 style garden, which is composed of an odd number of stone arrangements. This masonry technique has been used since the Muromachi period, and the odd number is considered a yang number, which is believed to be lucky, indicating the perpetuity of life. Visitors can find healing in the fusion of stone and nature in this harmonious space.

Antoine 49, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 Deed, via Flickr

We have introduced 10 gardens in Konkaiki that showcase the changing seasons, have any of these spots caught your eye for a visit? These gardens are places where you can experience the traditions and natural beauty of Japan while feeling the breath of Japanese culture and history. A visit to a garden is not only a sightseeing tour, but also a wonderful opportunity to experience the depth of Japanese spirit. Through strolling in these historic gardens, you will be able to experience the Japanese sense of beauty, philosophy, and refresh your body and soul!

Japan Wonder Travel Tours in Osaka

If you are planning on visiting Osaka and need some help organizing your trip, you came to the right place! We would be more than happy to help make your trip the best it possibly could be. We can advise you on where to go, or even better, hook you up with a local English speaking guide that can show you all of the best spots. Let us help you make fun, safe, and unforgettable memories in Osaka!

Osaka Highlights Private Walking Tour
On this full-day private tour of Osaka, we will take you to Osaka’s highlights that include Osaka Castle, Kuromon Market, the popular Dotonbori area, etc. Learn about the rich history of the area, local lifestyle, and of course delicious Osaka food!

Osaka tour

Osaka Tenjinbashi Local Street Walking Tour
Walk around the Tenjinbashi area with an experienced and knowledgeable English speaking guide! You can find all of the local secret hidden gems along the way. This tour also includes some delicious street food and drink.

Kyoto Food and Drink Tour @Nishiki Street & Gion
If you’re planning on visiting Kyoto along with Osaka and are looking to learn more about the culture and local cuisine, this is definitely the perfect tour for you! Take part in this fun food and drink tour and explore the 400-year-old market and the famous Gion district.

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Tour Packages
If you want to make travel easier, we suggest you look into tour packages.There are a wide range of tour packages out there to suit the accomodate for each traveler needs. Click the button below to find the best tour package from various Tour Operators!

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