Hydrangeas usually bloom from May to July with blue or pink flowers. Because they are at their best in June, they are popular during Tsuyu, the rainy season.
In this article, we would like to introduce some recommended Japanese hydrangea gardens. From serene temples to expansive parks and urban shrines, each place has its own unique charm. Let's explore the beauty of hydrangeas while immersing ourselves in the landscapes and culture of Japan.
Unsho-ji Temple, Akita Prefecture
Unsho-ji Temple, located in Akita Prefecture, is a stunning hydrangea spot. It was selected as one of the best scenic spots for its captivating hydrangeas in the "Best Scenic Views in Japan'' in 2017. The temple grounds boast approximately 1,500 hydrangea bushes, carefully cultivated by the vice abbot. The unique cultivation method results in each bush bearing an abundance of flowers, creating a breathtaking carpet of blue.
Michinoku Hydrangea Garden, Iwate Prefecture
The Michinoku Hydrangea Garden in Iwate Prefecture is renowned for its captivating Ajisai Ike (hydrangea pond). Nestled within a vast cedar forest, the garden offers three different walking courses: the "Kurenai Course," "Okuhime Course," and "Kenkyaku Course." From late June to late July, you can enjoy various species of hydrangeas while strolling through the garden. During the last few days of the season, hydrangeas are floated on the pond, creating a mesmerizing display of vibrant colors.
Shifuku-ji Temple, Miyagi Prefecture
Founded in Miyagi Prefecture during the Kamakura period, Shifukuji Temple is renowned as the "Hydrangea Temple." Along the roadside leading to the temple's entrance, hydrangeas bloom abundantly, creating a warm welcome for visitors.
Hattori Nouen Ajisai Yashiki (Hattori Farm Hydrangea Mansion), Chiba Prefecture
Hattori Nouen Ajisai Yashiki is a spectacular hydrangea destination. The hydrangea field covers approximately 4.45 acres, with over 10,000 hydrangea bushes. The vibrant and colorful hydrangeas blanket the mountainside, offering breathtaking views from every corner of the spacious grounds.
Hakusan Shrine, Tokyo Prefecture
Hakusan Shrine, located in Tokyo's urban setting, is known for its beautiful hydrangeas. The shrine grounds are adorned with around 20 different varieties of hydrangeas, showcasing a stunning contrast of blue, purple, pink, and white flowers. The abundant variety and colors of the hydrangeas captivate visitors and create a picturesque scene.
Meigetsu-in, Kanagawa Prefecture
Just a 10-minute walk from Kita-Kamakura Station, you'll find Meigetsu-in Temple. With thousands of hydrangea plants adorning its grounds, the temple transforms into a mesmerizing sea of blue during peak bloom, referred to as "Meigetsu-in Blue".
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Shimoda Park, Shizuoka Prefecture
Shimoda Park in Shizuoka Prefecture is renowned for being the largest hydrangea spot in Japan, boasting 150,000 bushes and three million blooms. Located atop a small hill, the 80-acre park provides panoramic views of Shimoda city and its port. In early summer, a stroll along the pathways surrounded by vivid hydrangeas creates a serene and enchanting atmosphere.
Mimuroto-ji Temple, Kyoto Prefecture
Mimuroto-ji Temple, known as the "Temple of Hydrangeas," is a prominent hydrangea spot in Kyoto. It houses approximately 50 different species of hydrangeas, including Western-style hydrangeas, lacecap hydrangea, and Hydrangea quercifolia. The unique variations and even heart-shaped flowers make it a delightful sight for visitors.
Gessho-ji Temple, Hyogo Prefecture
Gessho-ji Temple, the family temple of the Matsue clan is designated as a national historic site. Matsue, known as the "Water City," has a charm that complements rainy days. The atmosphere of Gessho-ji Temple on a rainy day is especially captivating.
Exploring the famous hydrangea spots in Japan presents a wonderful opportunity to create lasting memories accompanied by beautiful flowers. The hydrangeas encountered at each location symbolize the harmonious blend of Japan's nature and aesthetic sense. If you plan to visit Japan between May and July, I highly recommend visiting these renowned sites and allowing yourself to be enchanted by the magnificent hydrangea blooms. Embarking on a journey that immerses you in the beauty and elegance of Japan is sure to become a cherished memory for a lifetime.