This interesting site is located near the Tokyo Dome between Ochanomizu and Shinjuku and is one of Tokyo's most celebrated gardens.
Ironically, most Japanese will think of the small amusement park near the Tokyo Dome if you mention Korakuen, but the amusement park actually takes its name from the garden.
It was originally commissioned by Tokugawa Yorifusa and broke ground on the 64-acre site in 1629. Its interest lies in its self-conscious representation of various Chinese sites. In fact, the 30 year construction process included consultations with Zu Shu Shui, an exiled Chinese scholar. The central pond has a horai-jima and is well stocked with koi. The engetsukyo (Full Moon Bridge) is a stone bridge of Chinese design. Like so many Japanese designs with foreign influences, though, this is really a Japanese garden with a nod to Chinese influences. A yatsu-hashi bridge zig-zags through a field of irises. Sawari stepping stones pass near a waterfall and views unfold with a surprise around each corner. Today the site has been reduced to 16 acres, but it is still well worth the visit.
Koishikawa is an 8 minute walk from either JR Iidabashi Station or Korakuen Sation on the Marunouchi and Namboku lines. There is no parking available at the site.
Sunlight sparkles on the dancing water
Spring warms the garden wall
Plum buds smile like red lips,
But the gate-willow has not yet
Grown her eyebrows.