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Home - Travel - Sightseeing Guide - Okinawa - Honto - Naha
Shikinaen Garden 
# 13   of 21 most visited sights
in Okinawa Island

jump to:   access  -  admission  -  ratings  -  tours  -  links

Shikinaen was constructed in the end of the 18th century as the second residence of the Ryukyu kings. It features beautiful, relatively simple, wooden palace buildings with Okinawan style, red tile roofs and a spacious Japanese style landscape garden with a central pond. While the garden is designed in a style seen elsewhere in Japan, the architecture and flora give Shikinaen a uniquely Okinawan flavor.

Shikinaen was completely destroyed in the Battle of Okinawa of 1945, but has been neatly restored in the postwar years. In 2000, Shikinaen was among the sites added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites under the title Gusuku Sites and Related Properties of the Kingdom of Ryukyu.

A pair of stone bridges lead across the pond

The garden can be viewed from a 300 meter circular path, which leads through a forested area before reaching the pond. Two stone bridges connect to a small islet in the middle of the water and allow visitors to cross from one side of the pond to the other. A small hexagonal pavilion stands on a second islet. Artificial hills surround the pond and give the garden more vantage points and character.

The palace building stands near the pond's shore. The beautifully wooden structure used to serve the entertainment of the royal family and important guests. Today, visitors can inspect the building's large tatami floored rooms that look out onto the garden.

Inside the palace
A guard house in the forest surrounding the pond

Any Questions? Ask them in our question forum.

How to get there
By public transportation

Shikinaen Garden is one of the few attractions in Naha that is not accessible by the Okinawa Monorail. Instead it can be reached in about 20 minutes and for 230 yen one way from central Naha by bus numbers 2, 5 or 14. Among the three lines, bus number 5 can be boarded along Kokusaidori and bus number 14 at Naha Bus Center and Asahibashi Station.

By car

By car, Shikinaen can be reached in ten minutes from central Naha or 20 minutes from Naha Airport. Note, however, that the trip can take considerably longer during rush hours.

How to get to and around Naha

Hours and Fees
Hours:9:00 to 18:00 (until 17:30 from October to March)
Admission ends 30 minutes before closing
Closed:Wednesdays (or following day if Wednesday is a national holiday or falls on June 23)
Admission:400 yen

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Tours and Packages
Okinawa Tours
Various tours and travel packages for Okinawa.

User Ratings
Ratings for Shikinaen Garden:
japan-guide.com Rating:
  outstanding  
User Rating (by 60 users):
80/100
  recommended

Best rated sights nationwide (out of 781):
364.  Yanaka (Tokyo)   80/100
365.  Seisonkaku Villa (Kanazawa)   80/100
366.  Samurai District (Kakunodate)   80/100
367.  Mount Rokko (Kobe)   80/100
368.  Shirahama Beach (Izu Peninsula)   80/100
369.  Shikinaen Garden (Okinawa Island)   80/100
370.  Aoshima Island (Miyazaki)   80/100
371.  Sounkyo Onsen (Daisetsuzan)   80/100
372.  Tsuboya District (Okinawa Island)   80/100
373.  Rurikoji Temple (Yamaguchi)   80/100
Most visited sights nationwide (out of 913):
454.  Yoshiminedera (Kyoto)   110
455.  Shimanami Kaido (Onomichi)   109
456.  Ishiteji Temple (Matsuyama)   109
457.  Perry Black Ships (Izu Peninsula)   109
458.  Umitamago Aquarium (Beppu)   109
459.  Shikinaen Garden (Okinawa Island)   109
460.  Town Center (Kinosaki)   108
461.  City Museum (Kawagoe)   108
462.  Rinnoji Temple (Sendai)   108
463.  Tenjin Matsuri (Osaka)   108

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Japanese Links
Shikinaen Garden
Information page on the official Naha City website.

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