- February 11th, 2019
[Kosetsuen in Hakodate] One of Best Fall Foliage Tourist Attractions in Hakodate
- Fall Foliage of Kosetsuen
- List of Activities
- List of accommodations
Kosetsuen (香雪園) is a garden at 30-40 m altitude small hill in the eastern part of Hakodate downtown, and is one of facilities of Miharashi Park (見晴公園) along with a baseball ground, Hakodate Golf Club (函館ゴルフ倶楽部) and Grass Open Space (芝生広場). The Miharashi Park is the largest park in the Hakodate, and the area is 46.1 ha. In a spring, cherry blossoms are in full bloom, and In an autumn, this park is well-known as a good place to see fall foliage, and a lot of tourists come. Hakodate MOMI-G Festa (はこだてMOMI-Gフェスタ) is held from late October to early November, and autumn leaves are lit up in the evening. Admission free. A parking lot is free of charge.
The Kosetsuen built around 1898 by Mr. Minejiro Iwafune (岩船峯次郎) is a Kyoto-style Japanese garden planned by Mr. Chidzuki Tsuji (辻地月), a famous Japanese garden designer in Kyoto. In the Taisho period, a chief abbot of Chion-in Temple (知恩院), a grand head temple of Jodo-shu sect (浄土宗総本山) in the Kyoto, described the garden as “A garden with the scent of Ume in snow (雪の中に梅香る園)”, so the garden was named as the Kosetsuen. It is not explained who the chief abbot of the Chion-in Temple was, but the Monzeki of the Chion-in Temple was Mr. Genyu Yamashita (山下現有) in the Taisho period. Then, the Miharashi Park has been developped as a comprehensive park of the Hakodate city. The Kosetsuen was designated as a place of national scenic beauty in 2001, and is the only Nationally-designated Important garden in the Hokkaido.
Midori-no-Center (緑のセンター), Enteri (園亭), Greenhouse (温室), the Grass Open Space (芝生広場), Firefly Pond (ホタル池), Fireplaces (野外炉), playground equipment, arbora and public restrooms are built at the Kosetsuen with 4 parking lots. The Entei around the center of the garden is a symbol of the park, and is a Japanese-style house with a thatched roof built in the Meiji period, and the interior decoration is Shoin-zukuri architecture in the style of sukiya (数寄屋風書院造 * building in the style of a tea-ceremony house). The house is rented for a Japanese tea ceremony or a wedding ceremony, so entering the house is available. It is open to public during the Hakodate MOMI-G Festa.
The park is relatively close to Yunokawa Onsen (湯の川温泉), Trappistine Convent (トラピスチヌ修道院), Hakodate Airport (函館飛行場) and Hakodate University (函館大学). Drive carefully because intricate roads around here is narrow.
Yunokawa Onsen (湯の川温泉) is a famous hot-spring resort in the eastern part of Hakodate city. Hot springs spring 7000 liters everyday, so a quantity of the hot springs is abundant, too. 1.8 million tourists come here, and is one of the 3 major hot spring resorts in Hokkaido together with Noboribetsu Onsen (登別温泉) and Jozankei Onsen (定山渓温泉). The Yunokawa Onsen is called a back room of Hakodate, and I think that it is popular for easy access to the Yunokawa Onsen because it takes about 15 minutes from Hakodate Station by a car, and it takes about 5 minutes from Hakodate Airport by a car. It is probably only the Yunokawa Onsen in Hokkaido that there is a large hot-spring resort in the city area. Read More
Trappistine Convent (トラピスチヌ修道院) is the Japan’s first convent at 50-70 m altitude small hill in the eastern part of Hakodate downtown, and the another name is Angel Garden (天使園). It is well-known as a historical nunnery (monastery) together with Trappist Monastery (トラピスト修道院) that is famous for trappist cookies in Hokuto. About 70 nuns live here at present, so the whole convent is not allowed to visit. But only a part of the site (Front Garden, Souvenir Shop and Reference Room) is open to the public, and visitors can walk around. Cherry blossoms in a spring or fall foliage in an autumn can be enjoyed, and additive-free French Cake Madarena has a good reputation, too. Admission free. A parking lot is not provided. Toll parking lots open a business beside here. Read More
By the way, Express Hakodate-go (高速はこだて号) and Hakodate Limited Express New Star-go (函館特急ニュースター号), express buses, run between Sapporo and the Hakodate. Unfortunately, the express bus does not run between New Chitose Airport and the Hakodate. Besides, Rent-a-car can be rented around Hakodate Station, Hakodate Airport, the Goryokaku Fort and Hakodate Ferry Terminal.
Hakodate (函館) that about 260,000 people live is the 3rd largest port city in Hokkaido, and is a regional hub city of the Southern Hokkaido area. The Hakodate became incorporated with Toi town (戸井), Esan town (恵山), Todohokke village (椴法華) and Minami-kayabe town (南茅部) in 2004, and most of Kameda Peninsula (亀田半島) has changed to the Hakodate. It is one of most popular tourist cities in the Hokkaido, and about 5 million people visit here. The downtown of the Hakodate from Mt. Hakodate toward former Goryokaku fort is developed on a large sandbar between the seas, and a unique seashore landscape is very popular. Although a lot of tourists think the center town of the Hakodate is around Hakodate Station and the Mt. Hakodate, it is around Hakodate Streetcar Goryokaku Koen-mae Stop (函館市電五稜郭公園前駅). The Hakodate is also well-known as a city with a lot of slopes, and there are 19 slopes with its name such as Hachiman-zaka slope (八幡坂), Daisan-zaka slope (大三坂) and Motoi-zaka slope (基坂), so around the Mt. Hakodate has a lot of slope lands, and the Hakodate has a lot of narrow roads. As for a climate, the Hakodate is wamer than other cities in the Hokkaido because it is located of the Southern Hokkaido, and it does not snow hard. Read More
Fall Foliage of Kosetsuen
About 150 types of trees are planted at the Kosetsuen, and the best time to see the fall foliage is from late October to mid November. The autumn leaves are lit up in the evening during the Hakodate MOMI-G Festa, so fantastic autumn leaves can be enjoyed. A lot of the tourists come from overseas as well as all over the Japan. I visited here in early November, 2018. The site was large, so it took about 90 minutes to look around on foot.
|Admission fee||Free of charge|
|Parking lot||Free of charge/td>|
|Business hours||24 hours|
|Regular closing day||Open year all round|
|Home page||Home page is here|
|Mapcode||86 142 633*86|
Fall Foliage of Kosetsuen in Daytime
The Fall Foliage of the Kosetsuen were wotrh seeing here and there. In those, a maple tree was the most conspicuous in front of the Midori-no-Center. The leaves turned into deep red. A lot of the tourists took a commemorative photo successively. The red maple leaves are truly impressive.
A small maple tree and colorful autumn leaves were worth seeing along a path lined maple trees. The small maple tree was inconspicuous in the daytime, but it was charming in the evening.
The fall foliage near a creek went well with a bridge and a stone-made many-tiered tower (石層塔), and a view was nice.
Around the Entei, a pond, mossy ground and Japanese Cedar reminded me of the Kyoto, and maple leaves turned red made visitors feel an atmosphere like the Kyoto.
Atmosphere of Kosetsuen Can Be Watched on Youtube
Fall Foliage of Kosetsuen in Evening
In the evening of the Kosetsuen, places lit up were confined. Except a maple lined path, the Japanese garden and the Midori-no-Center, other places were dark. So trees lit up were conspicuous. Visitors should wear a warm clothes because it was cold.
The small maple tree was a popular photo spot in the evening. Comfortable tall and only red maple leaves were good. High school students looked like taking a selfie at that time.
Atmosphere of Kosetsuen Can Be Watched on Youtube
List of accommodations
Refer to following websites for the accommodations in the downtown of the Hakodate. You can get information regarding online reviews and photos.
North Part of Hakodate Downtown
South Part of Hakodate Downtown
A page of Hakodate is here
A page of Hokkaido Fall Foliage is here
Hokkaido Fall Foliage
By the way, Club Tourism (クラブツーリズム), a Japanese tour travel agency, provides various types of tours such as day trip tours or ordinary tours. In the case of bus tours, tourists do not drive their cars themselves, so they can savor alcohol. Choosen tourist attractions are national parks such as Rishiri and Rebun, Shiretoko, and popular tourist places such as Furano and Biei, and some activities such as hiking and fruit picking are also enjoyed depending on seasons. If you are interested in tour trips, you should visit the club tourism's website for details.
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