The Kyoto Garden

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Polaroid of japanese garden
Tucked away in the woods of Holland Park, lies the Kyoto Garden, built in 1992 as a London-Kyoto collaboration project. Providing a bitesize pocket of Japan and a much-needed oasis from London’s hustle and bustle, the Kyoto Garden is your new best friend. It’s always there, gives you space to think, and lends an ear when needed most (sure, it’s a tad unresponsive, but listen it does). If you have yet to find your happy place, then this is surely it.

Sprinklers keep the very green grass very green while periodically drenching unsuspecting tourists, the poor sods too busy gawping at the Koi fish to notice an oncoming tidal wave (this definitely did not happen to me). The sprawling fish-pond backs onto a beautiful waterfall, crossable by a tiny footbridge, and particularly pretty in the soft evening light. Oh, and peacocks. Expect lots of broody peacocks.

My summer’s been spent pouring over Japan guidebooks, lusting over pictures of Tokyo, and putting aside pennies, with aim to - eventually - make it there. Problem: getting to Japan is not cheap. But while my coppers accumulate, the Kyoto Garden provides a very decent substitute; while it can’t quite fill that Far Eastern-shaped void in my heart, it can at least quench my immediate thirst for all things Japanese.

Honestly, it’s just a really great place to eat sushi, take a few (kawaii) selfies, and kid yourself and your friends that you’re on a mini-break in Tokyo. 

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