Kagawa prefecture in Japan -Kitahama Alley, Ritsurin Garden-

Have you ever been to Kagawa prefecture? Kagawa is located in the northeast of Shikoku Island and the smallest prefecture in Japan but tourist can enjoy the spectacular scenery and attractions. The capital of Kagawa is Takamatsu, and there are many Islands such as Shodo Island, Teshima, Naoshima Island, Mukoujima Island, Megijima Island and Ogijima Island. In addition, There are a lot of famous spots and food such as Udon and Ritsurin Garden. If you like, I hope you can see this and use it as a reference for your trip.

How to get there

Shinkansen (bullet train)

If you are going there from Osaka or Tokyo, get off at Okayama station and transfer to the JR Marine Liner bound for Takamatsu station. The JR Marine Liner is a railway connecting Okayama prefecture with Kagawa prefecture and the scenery from the window is wonderful. It’s five stations get Takamatsu from Okayama. Between Tokyo and Takamatsu costs around 17,000 yen one way and It takes about 4 and a half hours.


The easiest and fastest way to get there from Tokyo is by plane. It will only takes about 1 and a half hours to get there. There are also a low-costs seats and the ticket prices depend on the season but It costs around 6,000 yen to 16,000 yen one way. There aren’t trains around the Takamatsu Airport and so tourists who want to go to Takamatsu station are recommended to take a Buses or Taxis. It takes about 40 minutes from Takamatsu Airport to Takamatsu station by bus.

Express bus

The express bus is very convenient and cheap when going from Osaka, Kyoto or Hyogo to Takamatsu. It takes about 3 and a half hours and costs around 4,000 yen one way.


The ferry for Takamatsu will depart from Kobe city of Hyogo prefecture and it takes about 4 and a half hours.

Takamatsu Station

There are tourist information, bus terminal, taxi stand, luggage locker, ferry terminal and Takamatsu-Kotohira Electric Railroad around Takamatsu station.

Kitahama Alley

Kitahama Alley has a lot of shops that have renovated old warehouse and every shops are so fashionable. There are restaurants, cafe and general shops and I found cute home goods such as incense and incense holder. In addition, the sunset and the scenery from here are so beautiful because facing the ocean.

This hamburger is really good and I highly recommend this restaurant.

Kitahama Alley is located next to the Seto Inland Sea and It will only takes about 10 minutes to get there from Takamatsu station on foot.

Ritsurin Garden

The Ritsurin Garden is the largest of the cultural property gardens designated as a Special Place of Scenic Beauty. The Ritsurin Garden was built by the local feudal lords of Takamatsu in Sanuki Province, Ikoma Takatoshi during the early Edo period and after that the garden construction was took over by Matsudaira Yorishige feudal lord in 1642 and was completed by the Fifth Lord Yoritaka in 1745. There are 6 ponds, 13 hills and a well-maintained pine tree, tourist can see many beautiful flowers and magnificent scenery depend on the season.

There are about 1400 pine trees in the park and almost 1000 pine trees of them cared for by craftsman. These pine trees have been cared by craftsman for about 300 years.

Shoko Shoreikan

The Shoko Shoreikan build as the Kagawa Museum in 1899, it has a corridors structure with the main building, west building, east building, north building and the corridors connecting them.

The tables and chairs of George Nakashima who is a worldwide furniture designer are on display on the 2nd floor of the main building. In addition, there are many pottery, woodwork and Japanese lacquerware including Kagawa on display and then tourist can also see what the craftsman are actually making it.

Hobiu Hill

These cycad are very beautiful and I felt like I was in a tropical paradise. They cycad are over 300 years old and It is designated as Kagawa prefectural Natural treasure. There are Kansuichi Pond and Okedoi Waterfall around here.

Go around the park by boat

I also recommend to take a boat and enjoy the views in the park.

・Passengers fare/620 yen for an adult and 310 yen for a child
・Hours/ 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.(November, December and January from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.)
・It takes about 30 minutes
・The boat capacity is 6 people

Higurashi-tei Teahouse

Higurashi-tei Teahouse was built in early part of the Meiji period and there are five tea room inside with tea garden on both sides.

・Hours/10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
(January, February, July, August and December is Saturday, Sunday and Holiday only.)
・With Matcha/500 yen

Kikugetsu-tei Teahouse

The Kikugetsu-tei is the largest tea room in the garden and has been loved by successive lords of the domain. The Kikugetsu-tei looks amazing from any direction and I was able to feel the master craftsmanship.

・Hours/9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
・With Matcha tea/700 yen for an adult and 500 yen for a child
・With Sencha tea/500 yen for an adult and 400 yen for a child

Gift shop

There are a lot of souvenir such as local foods, snacks, household items liquor and traditional crafts. I recommend the Udon and Olive from Kagawa prefecture because it is very famous and delicious.

・9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.(January, November, December )
・9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.(February, October)
・10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.(March to September)



Get on at the Takamatsu Station or Takamatsu-chikko and then Get off at the Ritsurin Garden.

・The shopping rainbow loop bus is popular because it is cheap fare.
Takamatsu Station to Ritsurin garden-mae is westbound.
Ritsurin garden-mae to Takamatsu Station is eastbound.

・The following buses also stop at Ritsurin Garden-mae Station.
33 Ritsurin Garden・Kagawa Chuo High school
35 Ritsurin Garden・Nissei Newtown
41 Ritsurin Garden・Yusa , Airport
43 Ritsurin Garden・Yusa , Iwasaki
47 Ritsurin Garden・Mimaya , Prefectural pool
51 Ritsurin Garden・Busshozancho , Iwasaki
53 Ritsurin Garden・Shionoe

Takamatsu-Kotohira Electric Railroad (Kotoden)

It takes about 7 minutes from Takamatsu-chikko to Ritsurin Garden.



Free opening day/January 1, March 16
Adults ¥410 (¥330 for groups of 20 or more)
Kids ¥170 (¥140 for groups of 20 or more)

Audio guide/¥200
Japanese, English, Chinese, Korean, French, German, Spanish
Ritsurin Garden Volunteer Guide is free (only Japanese )

There are paid lockers at the east and north gates and there is parking lot 100 yen every 25 minutes.


Open all year round

January, December/7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
February/7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
March/6:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
April, May, September/5:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
June, July, August/5:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
October/6:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
November /6:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.