Senganen Garden, Kagoshima, Kyushu, Japan…

Senganen Garden, also known as Isoteien is a Japanese style landscape garden along the coast north of downtown Kagoshima. One of the garden’s most striking feature is its use of Sakurajima volcano and Kagoshima Bay as borrowed scenery. It also includes small ponds, streams, a cat(neko) shrine(yesss!) and a bamboo grove. Constructed in 1658 by the wealthy Shimazu Clan, one of the most powerful feudal clans during the Edo Period(1603-1867); the Shimazu ruled the Satsuma domain – presently Kagoshima for almost 700 years, until 1868. They also continued to be influential throughout the modern era as some of the earliest adopters of Western science and technology.

At the center of the garden stands the Iso Residence; it was originally built in 1658 along with the rest of the garden, but the current building mostly dates back to a reconstruction of the mid 1880s. After the end of the feudal age, the Iso Residence became the main residence of the Shimazu family, and its rooms are preserved the way they used to be in the 1890’s. Senganen has a variety of trees and plants that make the garden scenery interesting all year long. There are a number of cherry trees, especially of the early flowering “kanhizakura” variety, which open as early as late January.

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N.B. Kagoshima is Kyushu’s southernmost major city and the capital of Kagoshima Prefecture. The city is often compared to Naples, its Italian “sister city”, due to a similarly mild climate, palm tree lined streets, relatively hot tempered inhabitants and Sakurajima, Kagoshima’s Vesuvius.


About Mél@nie Mélanie Bedos-Toulouse @ Facebook

Posted on 24 July 2014, in melanie. Bookmark the permalink. 42 Comments.

  1. There is no way anyone can dispute the beauty of Japanese gardens. Their gardens speak of tranquility, spirituality and the earthiness of harmony. Emu aka Ian

  2. Alt post pe masura inimii mele! 🙂

  3. If it has a cat shrine, it has to be a wonderful garden. 🙂

  4. Nice pix! You are an artist.

  5. Gosh! I can’t be everywhere at the same time. Shucks — so many lovely places to see. But then, I do need to stay home, at least long enough to get “Figs & Pomegranates & Special Cheeses” off the ground. And to enjoy my daughter’s visit.

    • 🙂 you’re sooo right, Miss Mona! we say in French: you can’t be in front of your oven and inside the mill at the same time! – ad hoc & mot-à-mot translation, but I’m sure you’ll understand it: unable to be at 2 spots at the same time…?
      * * *
      my very best and enjoy your daughter’s visit! 🙂

    • I love the saying. And I am enjoying my visit. When she comes to Minnesota it’s to paint the sets her brother designs and builds. This time it was a children’s theater production of “Schoolhouse Rock.” It was a delightful cartoony set that didn’t require lots of painting, so she was free to spend more time doing fun stuff. Monday will be the last day to enjoy together for a while.

      I’m happy I had most of the work done on “Figs … ” before she arrived. I should be making it’s way to the public soon.

  6. Stéphane Cassin Photographie

    Les photos traduisent bien la culture japonaise et je trouve cela très esthétique!

  7. Encore de superbes photos, tu es une infatigable voyageuse pour notre plus grand plaisir.

  8. Che fresco e riposante giardino hai scelto questa volta. Verde, tranquillità e tante, tante splendidie immagini. Kagoshima è la Napoli giapponese. Ho pensato non tanto al clima e alla suggestione del paesaggio, quanto ai lati più spiacevoli di questa bellissima città italiana.

  9. Such a beautiful spot and so perilous, too, Melanie. Love that the people, like the Napolitan, are “hot-blooded”. 🙂

  10. Exactly what I imagined a Japanese garden to be. So tranquil and meticulous with no sense of clutter at all.

  11. Foarte frumoase locuri ai vizitat în Japonia, Melanie! Poarta aceea (din lemn mi se pare) cu acoperiș mi-a adus aminte de porțile noastre (bucovinene, maramureșene, oltene, de fapt din toată Romania aproape). O zi frumoasă cu voie bună să ai!

    • 🙂 ai dreptate, Geta, însa la fata locului, am “uitat” Europa pur si simplu… stii ca iubesc Japonia de care mi-e tare dor, as putea trai acolo… multumesc, la fel si pe curând! 🙂

  12. I think I may have to visit when/if I finally make it over there. 🙂 thank you for sharing.

  13. Superbe reportage sur le raffinement et l’élégance japonaise. De toute manière, un peuple qui divinise ses chats ne saurait être méchant. Bonne journée, Mélanie.

  14. Cât poate să fie de frumos! Şi tu cu umbreluţa faci parte din peisaj! oricum sunt sigură că inima ta este acolo un munument al admiraţiei pentru splendorile întreţinute poate cu mii de oră de muncă de harniciii locuitori!

  15. Superbe locuri. 🙂

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