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Established in the late eight century, Jōnan-gū is a Shintō shrine hidden in Kyōto’s busty industry-district, Jōnan-gū has a surprisingly beautiful garden that is worth visiting throughout the seasons.
The shrine is perhaps most known for its plum blossoms. In the first of four gardens, plum trees transform the shrine grounds into a symphony in white and pink during early March. An experience in itself, social media has transformed Jōnan-gū’s plums into a must-visit spot for Japanese. Ten years ago, one could enjoy the plums rather quietly, but ever since 2019, I personally advise not to visit the shrine gardens during the weekend. Rather, aim for the evening hours during a week-day, allowing you to fully enjoy the landscape.
Asides from plum blossoms, the other gardens boast large numbers of Rhododendron (April–May), wisteria (early May), and a particularly late breed of maples (early December).
Although a bit inconvenient to reach, Jōnan-gū is a 10 minute walk from Takeda station on the Karasuma subway line.

Admission: open year-round.

Shinnyodo 2017.jpg

Plum blossom at Jōnan-gū Shrine.

Spring 春
Summer 夏
Autumn 秋
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