After visiting Narita-san Shinsho-ji Temple, take a walk through the lush green park
Naritasan Park is a garden in a hilly area at the back of the Great Main Hall of Shinsho-ji Temple. It is a resting area for visitors with a Western-style garden, 3 ponds, a waterfall and other features. Inside the park is the Naritasan Calligraphy Museum which exhibits works and information dating from the late Edo Era to the present day. Furthermore, to the side of the museum is a suikinkutsu (buried earthen jar) which is a feature of Japanese garden ornamentation from the Edo Era. The water overflows from the hollows in the bedrock and the sound from it dripping into the jar echoes in all four directions.
2 events at the park: the Spring Plum Blossom Festival and the Autumn Colors Festival
Naritasan Park has created a landscape filled with spirit only found in a Japanese garden that spans the four seasons. Established in 1928, the trees of the park that have lived for more than 80 years have grown wonderfully and are approaching maturity. In spring, there are the cherry blossoms but in addition, there are the approximately 500 red plum and white plum trees that average around 50 years of age. Annually for 2 weeks from late February, there is a plum blossom festival held with events also happening on the weekends. Starting from traditional musical performances featuring shamisen, koto and other Japanese instruments, you can also partake in the tea ceremony and have a drink of amazake for free. During the season when the fall colors are out in November, about 250 trees including maple, oak and gingko are painted in red and yellow, and they are reflected on the surface of the 3 ponds in the park. 10,000 visitors a day come for the Autumn Colors Festival. Tea ceremonies are held in the park teahouse, Sekishoan, and anyone can participate for free. People trying the tea ceremony for the first time are more than welcome, so you will want to take advantage of the opportunity by all means. The musical performances are held at the Ukimido gazebo over Ryuuchi Pond where you can listen to the beautiful tones of instruments such as the koto, shakuhachi and erhu.