March 11, 2019

JAPAN TRAVEL: Sengan Garden, A Place of Scenic Beauty in Kagoshima

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  • JAPAN TRAVEL: Sengan Garden, A Place of Scenic Beauty in Kagoshima
  • Heralded as “A Place of Scenic Beauty” in Japan, Sengan-en (Sengan Garden) in Kagoshima Prefecture reveals its splendor through its natural landscape and fascinating history.

    Sengan-en in Kagoshima Prefecture

    The 12-acre sprawling garden was built in 1658 by Shimadzu Mitsuhisa of the influential Shimadzu clan.

    Before it became a tourist attraction, Sengan-en served a greater purpose in Japan as it played an important role in bridging Japan to other countries—thus, the many Chinese and Western influences that you can see in the surroundings.

    The borrowed scenery of Mount Sakurajima that can be viewed from Shimadzu House

    Sengan-en boasts of its borrowed scenery from Mount Sakurajima and Kinko Bay, adding beauty to the beguiling landscape of the garden.

    At the Matcha Cafe in Sengan Garden 

    Mini Matcha Parfait, a mix of matcha and rice tea 

    Sweet potato with peanuts 

    The best way to navigate around Sengan-en is to take a leisurely stroll. The garden houses around 30 spots worth checking out, from the prestige Shimadzu House to historic monuments, museums, and restaurants.

    Tin Gate, a famous historical film location in Sengan-en

    Apart from the different spots you can see inside Sengan-en, the garden also serves as a venue for various events and historical ceremonies in Kagoshima. Exciting events are held all throughout the year which makes Sengan-en an all-year-round destination.

    In 2015, Sengan-en and the Shoku Shuseikan Museum were recognized as a World Cultural Heritage Site of Japan’s Meiji Industrial Revolution, due to its contribution in pioneering the industrialization in the country.

    With more than 350 years of history, Sengan-en stands as a remarkable site that best mirrors the heritage of Kagoshima.

    How to get here

    • By bus: Take any of these bus lines: Kagoshima City View Bus/Machi Meguri Bus/Public Bus Service and get off at Sengan-en mae stop.
    • By car: It is a 40-minute drive from Kagoshima Airport.

    General Information:
    Address: 9700-1 Yoshino-cho, Kagoshima City, Kagoshima 892-0871
    Operating Hours: 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. daily
    Contact: +81 99-247-1551
    Facebook page:

    Admission fees:
    Entrance fee to the garden, museum and the house is ¥1,300 for adults and ¥650 for children 6 to 15 years old.
    Entrance fee for garden and museum only is ¥1,000 for adults and ¥500 for children 6 to 15 years old.

    This first appeared in Philippine Primer magazine’s Vol. 36-March 2019 issue. 

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