Sunday, November 29, 2009
Kenrokuen Garden Autumn Light Up, Kanazawa
Moments like this make me just so happy I decided to come to Japan for a year. Seeing something with your own eyes that is just so spectacular that it defies description.
Every year the Kenrokuen (one of the most famous gardens in Japan) host a 2 week long "Autumn Light Up" event where the richly coloured autumnal trees, waterfalls, yukitsuri and fountains within the Kenrokuen are lit up to create some seriously breathtaking scenery. I met Kari & gang and we set off.
I'll let the pictures speak for themselves and stop yapping for a bit!
Amazing! Just as I thought I couldn't be any more astounded we walked around the corner and were greeted by a towering almost outerspace looking landscape of Karasaki pine trees all covered in these wooden teepee looking structures called yukitsuri (literally meaning "snow suspension"). This teepee framework actually has an important purpose in protecting the precious branches from the weight of the forthcoming heavy snow.
The sight of yukitsuri at the Kenrokuen is famous across Japan (I've heard!) since we apparently have "heavy wet snow" in Ishikawa and Toyama Prefectures. Here you'll see the structures everywhere (as well as Toyama where I work, see other post.)
We reached the lake and it just got better. The beautiful sound of a string quartet was playing in the distance. it turned out that the music was coming from a traditional Chaya (tea) house right next to the lake. Had I been with a guy it would have been SO wonderfully romantic, unfortunately I was with Kari and friends so my feet were kept firmly on the ground!
I did my best to take piccies but without a tripod it was near impossible so I actually ended up going back to the Kenrokuen armed with tripod a few days later. Typical my luck it was peeing down with rain, I lost a glove en route, my waterproof trousers split and it was sooooo freezing!
Soaked, cold and looking bedraggled I took a few last pictures of Kanazawa castle and the beautiful lights they put up in Katamatchi. By then my fingers (especially on one hand) had frozen around the camera so I decided to call it a day!
Ps I got details about the Kenrokuen Autumn Light Up from the following website in the "What's New" section. It took some hunting to find out finer details of the event I must admit (but worth it)