Enjoy Beautiful Autumn Leaves in Aichi Prefecture
By LIHUA ZHAO. Posted on December 22, 2014
Aichi Prefecture has many places to enjoy colorful autumn leaves from November to early December. I would like to introduce some places for Autumn leaves (momiji, 紅葉), such as Tokugawa Garden, Ninnomaru Garden at Nagoya Castle, Shirotori Garden in Nagoya, and Korankei in Toyota.
1. Tokugawa-en (Tokugawa Garden)
Tokugawa-en (Tokugawa Garden, 徳川園) is a traditional Japanese garden that was used as a retirement villa for local lords. Tokugawa-en was destroyed during World War II and reopened as a public garden in 2004. The garden is one of the most famous places in Nagoya for colorful autumn leaves. It’s even open at night in late November.
Ryusenko (Ryusen Lake 龍仙湖) is the main lake inside the Tokugawa garden, and the amazing scenery of the garden is reflected in the water. Seikotei (Sei Lake Bund 西湖堤) is a miniature of the bridge over Sei Lake (West Lake) in Hangzhou, China. You can enjoy the beautiful landscape of the traditional Japanese garden and watch carp playing in the lake.
2. Ninomaru Garden at Nagoya Castle (名古屋城の二之丸庭園)
Ninnomaru Garden is about 14,000 m2 and located near the east gate of the Nagoya Castle. Part of the garden was destroyed at the beginning of the Meiji period because of military camp construction. However, in 1716, the garden was reopened as Ninnomaru Garden. It features the Ninomaru Teahouse and ponds surrounded by flowers and trees. You can enjoy the colorful maple trees from late November until early December.
3. Shirotori Garden (白鳥庭園)
Shirotori Garden is a Japanese-style garden located near Atsuta Shrine in Nagoya. In the center of the park, there is a tea ceremony room, which is designed based on a shirotori (swan) flying down to rest its wings.
If you walk to the southwestern of the garden, you can find many beautiful places with small waterfalls and colorful maple trees. This area is designed to represent Mt. Ontake, and the stream represents Kiso River.
There are many colorful carp playing in the pond and waiting to be fed. You can take a rest while you sit on the bank and enjoy the landscape of the beautiful garden.
4. Korankei (香嵐渓)
Korankei is located in Toyota, Aichi Prefecture, which is one of the most popular places for autumn leaves. Korankei is a valley that runs around Mount Iimori, and you can find more than 4,000 maple trees along Korankei. These maple trees were planted by the head priest of Kojakuji in the 17th century. Mid-to-late November is the best time to enjoy the colorful landscape. The trees near the Taigetsukyo Bridge are illuminated at night until the end of November. You can find the walking map pamphlet here: [Map]
Ichinotani (一の谷) is one of the best spots in Koreankei for autumn leaves. It's the last stop on the walking path. You can see a mixture of red, yellow, and green autumn leaves covering the entire walking path.
Tsuribashi (also called Korankei Bridge) is a suspension bridge on the way from Ichinoya to Kojakuji temple. The maple trees near the bridge had not yet turned red when I visited in mid-November.
This year, the Tomoe River illumination event was held from November 1st to 9th. Korankei’s Tomoe River was decorated with thousands of blue LED lights that looked like stars in the sky. They decorate the Tomoe River with 8,000 LED lights on weekends and 4,000 on weekdays from 17:00 until 19:00.
Korankei is quite difficult to reach. It takes around 2 – 3 hours by public transportation, and about 1.5 hours if there is no traffic congestion. During the peak season, it takes more than 2 hours to reach Korankei.
Public Transportation to Korankei:
1. Take Meitetsu bus from Higashi-Okazaki Station (東岡崎駅). 800 yen, 70 minutes.
2. Take Oiden bus from Jōsui Station (浄水駅). 500 yen, 60 minutes.
3. Take Meitetsu bus from Toyotashi Station (豊田市駅). 800 yen, 40 minutes.
LIHUA ZHAOLihua Zhao has been living in Japan for 6 years as a researcher in computer science. She loves travelling and hiking in Japan. Now she started to explore the Shoryudo region of Japan (Central Japan).
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