Kōkōen – The Most Beautiful Garden of Himeji Castle


While the famous Kōrakuen Garden in Okayama was chosen to be one of the three greatest gardens in Japan, we really think the Kōkōen Garden (好古園) deserves a lot more publicity overall. Kōrakuen Garden has lots of lawn areas compared to Kōkōen, which we think is kind of boring… Kōkōen Garden in Himeji on the other hand consists of nine small unique gardens that were constructed in line with Edo gardening principles.

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Himeji Castle – The Most Elegant Castle in Japan


Nowadays, many Japanese castles have been included in the World Heritage Register. But, when it comes to the ranking determined by the Japan Castle Foundation, there can only be ONE castle that is ranked first place.

Himeji Castle (姫路城), also known as the White Heron Castle or Shirasagi-Jō (白鷺城) in Japanese, got its nickname as the castle’s white walls and white roofs are reminiscent of a heron gracefully expanding its wings. This castle with such an elegant appearance, together with some other factors, was again chosen to be the best castle amongst hundreds of castles in Japan in the Foundation’s latest release!

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