Koko-en is a recently constructed Japanese style garden, though you would never know it. It opened in 1992 on the former site of of the feudal lords' west residence (Nishi-Oyashiki). It spans over 930 acres and consists of nine separate gardens designed in various garden styles of the Edo period. Among the gardens are the garden of the lord's residence which features a pond with a waterfall, a tea garden where visitors can enjoy green tea in a tea ceremony house, a pine tree garden, a bamboo garden and a flower garden.

Koko-en was constructed to commemorate Himeji City's 100th anniversary. The garden was built on the land allotments of the Edo Period discovered during archaelogical excavations. The name 'Koko-en' is derived from 'Koko do' the name of Japan's sixth provincial school founded in 1692 in Himeji by the last Lord of Himeji, Lord Sakai. The garden includes the Oyashiki-no-niwa (lit. 'Garden of the Feudal Load's Residence'), the 'Cha-no-niwa' (Tea Garden) and seven other gardens as well as a decent restaurant too. If you're going to Himeji Castle, you should certainly visit these gardens as they are one of the most beautiful I have seen.


Crossing over a beautiful wooden bridge as you enter the garden the following waterfall cascades down the rocks and under the bridge, where it flows into the main pond.