Spring Rose Festival at the Kyu-Furukawa Gardens

Kyu-Furukawa Gardens (旧古河庭園, Kyū Furukawa teien) is a rather unknown spot for tourists in the Northern part of Tokyo. We visited in the middle of May while the annual Spring Rose Festival (はるのバラフェスティバル) was held.
Villa and rose garden
You can divide this place in three parts. First, and probably most impressive, is the Western-styled building which you already can see from the entrance. It was built by Baron Toranosuke Furukawa and the architect Josiah Conder, finished by 1917. From the outside, the villa gives you a Western impression, but also inside the first floor is completely held in Western style. However, when you go up to the second floor, the interior is changed to Japanese style even including rooms with tatami mats. 
If you want to take a look to the inside, there are three guided tours a day in Japanese only. They start from 10:30 am, 1:00 pm and 2:30 pm and will take around one hour. The admission fee for the tour is 800 yen. And notice you are not allowed to take photos inside. 
Right next to the villa you find the Western Garden. Here you find different flowers according to the season you visit the there. We came there while Spring Rose Festival and so everywhere beautiful roses from all over the world were blooming. It looked really wonderful, even though it was crowed because of this, too. Typically you also can by rose products there, including rose tea and rose ice.
Walking through the Western Garden you arrive at the Japanese Garden which is really large. It includes a lake, several bridges, stone lanterns and even a small waterfall and tea house. Especially in autumn many trees will be turned red, so be sure to visit there again if you are in Japan at this time.
Kyu-Furukawa Gardens is located between the stations Kaminakazato, Nishigahara and Komagome. It takes between 7 to 12 minutes to walk there from either of these stations. Entry fee is as little as 150 yen. It is opened from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, last entry at 4:30 pm.
Map of Kyu-Furukawa Gardens
Kyu-Furukawa Gardens

Claudia Mitsubori