Translated by Takuya Erik Watanabe
Enjoy Matcha Tea in the Heart of Sankeien Garden, Yokohama
Written by Matsurika
Despite its location in the middle of Yokohama, Sankeien is a garden where you can experience a Japanese style atmosphere. Various flowers bloom throughout the large garden, and you can even enjoy genuine matcha at the rest spots. Even just the free areas
From Motomachi-Chūkagai station of the Minatomirai Line, 15 minutes by the city bus, in a quiet residential area, you will find Sankeien garden. It's a Japanese garden created by Sankei Hara, an industrialist who worked in the silk business around the early 1900's. Sankeien is popular as a place where one can enjoy a Japanese style atmosphere, despite its location in the middle of the international city Yokohama.
Sankeien is made up of the outer garden, which is open to the public, and the inner garden, which requires an admission fee. The approximate 175,000㎡ site has 17 historical buildings relocated from Kyoto and Kamakura among other places. You can see cherry blossoms and azaleas in the spring, water lilies and hydrangeas in the summer, cluster‐amaryllis and wild chrysanthemum and autumn leaves in the fall, plum blossoms in the winter. The scenic view you can admire changes throughout the year along with the seasons.
First, we'll purchase a ticket (adults 500 yen, children 200 yen) and receive a free map at the entrance.
The map of the garden is available in five languages, and you can download them from the official website as well. Once past the front entrance, a beautiful lake and a three-storied pagoda come into view.
A wooden ship is floating on the lake.
Waterbirds are freely playing around in the park.
The clear blue sky and green of the mountains, the trees and tower reflect in the water. The calm scene heals the heart and lets one forget the noise of the city. We recommend a walk with your map in one hand around the park, full of the Japanese spirit, admiring the trees and flowers.
Former Yanohara House relocated from Shirakawago in Gifu prefecture
There is a total of 17 historical buildings in Sankeien, including ten monuments designated Important National Cultural Properties and three Tangible Cultural Properties of Yokohama.
Among them, the gasshō-zukuri style house known as the Former Yanohara House is a must-see. It's the house of the Yanohara family, known as one of the "Three Rich of Hida". Originally built in Gifu prefecture's Shirakawa-gō, it was donated and brought to Sankeien. The house is open to the public, and you can have a look inside it.
Many couples take commemorative photos or have their weddings at Sankeien. On this day we met a group taking pictures and received some of their happiness.
At Sankeien Saryō you can enjoy soba and oden and other dishes as well as Japanese style desserts. You can eat Japanese sweets while looking over the exceptional lake view.
Souvenirs are available at the Sankei Memorial (Sankei Kinenkan), and you can find among them genuine matcha (with snack, 500 yen) at the cafe Chaseki - Bōtōtei. It's a great way to end your Japanese garden experience. The hours there are 10:00-16:00, so make sure you have plenty of time when you visit.
Address: Yokohama, Naka ward, Honmoku sannotani 58-1
Hours: 09:00-17:00 (Final admission 30 minutes before)
Wi-Fi: Available in some places, such as the Central Plaza and Sankei Memorial Lobby
Credit cards: No
Languages: Japanese (volunteer guide staff available *reservation necessary)
Menus in other languages: Maps available in 5 languages
Nearest station: JR Keihin Tōhoku Line- Negishi Line "Negishi" station (根岸駅), Minatomirai Line "Motomachi-Chūkagai" station (元町・中華街駅)
Access: (From Negishi station) City bus platform 1, ride buses No. 58, 99 or 101 and get off at Honmoku (本牧) bus stop, 10-minute walk
(From Motomachi-Chūkagai station) Yamashitachō bus stop near Exit 4, ride city buses 8 or 148, get off at Sankeien-iriguchi (三渓園) bus stop, 5-minute walk.
Entrance fee: Adult (middle school and above) 500 yen, children (elementary school) 200 yen *Groups 100 yen discount
Phone number: +81-45-621-0634