Japanese Pond Gardens also known as chisen-shoyu-teien or shinden-zukuri style are a Japanese garden style which features a large formal building with two wings and a large lake or pond. Japanese pond garden style came from China during the Heian Period.

Japanese Pond Gardens were only ever for the very wealthy or Imperial properties as the scale of the buildings, lake and surrounding garden required significant capital and ongoing funds for maintenance. These high costs have meant that no gardens have survived from the Heian Period (794-1185) when this Japanese garden style was introduced to Japan from China. Today there are only two reconstructed examples of Japanese Pond Gardens in Japan, which are to be found in Kyoto at: Daikakuji Temple and Heian Jingu Shrine.

Japanese Pond Garden - Daikakuji Temple

Japanese Pond Garden - Daikakuji Temple



Daikakuji Temple

Daikakuji Temple is a Buddhist temple of the Esoteric sect, in Saga Kyoto, which was once a detached palace belonging to Emperor Saga. In 876AD it was converted to a temple by his daughter Empress Seishi. Daikakuji Temple is famous for its fusuma paintings from the Momoyama period and several cultural treasures it possesses. Daikakuji Temple is most famous for its Japanese Pond Garden (chisen-shoyu-teien or shinden-zukuri), which is one of only two in Japan.

Heian Jingu Shrine

Heian Jingu is a Shinto Shrine in Kyoto. Heian Jingu is famous for having the largest torii in Japan and its beautiful Japanese Pond Garden (chisen-shoyu-teien or shinden-zukuri), which is one of only two in Japan and stunning cherry blossom in Spring.


Adachi Museum of Art is known for its collection of contemporary Japanese painting, however it is famous for its five Japanese gardens which are said to be the best in Japan. Adachi Museum of Art has been awarded as the most beautiful Japanese garden for eleven consecutive years in a row by The Journal of Japanese Gardening. The five gardens, which cover an area of 165,000 square meters, include: Moss Garden, Dry Landscape Garden, Juryu-an Garden, Pond Garden and White Gravel and Pine Garden. There is also the 15m high Kikaku-no-taki Waterfall. The gardens are designed to feature different parts in each season.

Japanese Pond Garden - Heian Jingu Shrine

Japanese Pond Garden - Heian Jingu Shrine

Japanese Gardens


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