Life in the city means less chance to be around greenery. I cannot find the chance to go to the mountains or the forest and I felt myself
wanting to take in negative ions from nature. Then I visited the Niigata Prefectural Botanical Garden!
We went by car, a 30 minute drive from Niigata Station. When I heard “botanical garden” I envisioned a plain building but I was surprised
and excited to find a sprawling park with different trees all over and a large lake with a walking path around it! There were so many people
there on their picnic blankets enjoying nature under the bright blue sky.
Entering the greenhouse, the dome was bathed entirely green and I was greeted by the warm, almost heavy air that carried the scent of the plants. It was a world completely different from the outside, an intriguing place where I could instantly leave my everyday life. Walking the
jungle-like paths, I enjoyed all of the different plants that filled the space from floor to ceiling. This dome, by the way, is apparently one of
the largest in Japan at 30 meters high and 42 meters in diameter. It holds a whopping 550 varieties, totaling approximately 4,000 plants
which means there are many that are hard to find elsewhere.
Moving onto the next room, there was an exhibit on the growth of acorns and aquatic plants. It looked like a great opportunity for children to learn but it was full of information that even I, as an adult, did not know so I enjoyed the exhibit and reading the explanations. There was
also an indoor garden and an aquatic garden so it felt like this place was bursting with diverse plants. It would be great for families, friends, or dates!
After you have seen the inside, you must enjoy the area around it, too! The park’s landscape changes with the seasons. Rhododendrons,
camellias, and herbs are just a few on the list of the tens of thousands of plants that allow you to enjoy the great outdoors without leaving the city. Just walking a loop around this park will surely leave you feeling refreshed! Now, until the next season comes. Bye for now!
Hours: 9:30–16:30 (Last admission at 16:00)
* Closed: Mondays (Tuesday instead if Monday is a holiday), and the New Year’s Holidays (Dec. 28–Jan. 3)
Admission: Adults 600 yen (480 yen per person for groups of over 20 people),Seniors (65 and older) 500 yen,
University and high school students 300 yen, Elementary and Jr. high school students 100 yen
(free on weekends and national holidays)
* Park and parking lot are free of cost
Address: 186 Kanazu, Akiha Ward, Niigata City 956-0845
Mapcode: 32 313 838*44
URL: https://botanical.greenery-niigata.or.jp (In Japanese)