Autumn Evening Illumination at Rikugien Gardens

6:00pm – 8:30pm
¥1,000 (advance sales)

Built by a feudal lord during the Edo period, Rikugien Gardens is one of the most famous gardens from the time still extant. Designed to reflect famous scenes from waka poems, this Tsukiyama-Sensui style stroll garden has also been designated as a national scenic beauty spot since 1953.

What happens?

The gardens are known as one of the best spots for autumn foliage viewing. The annual illumination event during the season invites many people who enjoy the beautiful collaboration between the flames of autumn leaves and the illumination throughout this beautiful example of an Edo era garden.

Near the entrance you can buy small souvenir lanterns to light your way, and near the exit there is a small market selling food and handicrafts. Just be careful, the path can be uneven, so watch your step.

Autumn leaves lit up. | Photo by Maria Danuco


You will need a special nighttime ticket to view the illuminations. In the upcoming weeks, you will find the advance tickets on sale on the official website for ¥900. However, you need to buy advance tickets at least one day ahead, you can’t buy them same-day.

You can also buy tickets in-person on the day, you need to pay ¥1,100 in cash at the ticket counter. The line to buy tickets on the day can get quite long, but it moves quickly.

Some parts of the gardens may be closed after 4:30 p.m. for security reasons. Some of the teahouses will be open though, so you can enjoy some tea and Japanese sweets under the moonlight. During this event, the garden stays open until 8:30 p.m. with last admittance at 7:30 p.m.

Organizers may cancel events, alter schedules, or change admission requirements without notice. Always check official sites before heading to an event.

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