Senganen Garden (މ), also known as Isoteien (뉀), is a Japanese-style landscape garden along the coast north of downtown Kagoshima. One of the garden's most striking features is its use of Sakurajima and Kagoshima Bay as borrowed scenery. The garden also includes small ponds, streams, shrines and a bamboo grove.

Senganen was constructed in 1658 by the local Shimazu Clan, one of the most powerful feudal clans during the Edo Period (1603-1868). The Shimazu ruled the Satsuma domain (present day Kagoshima) for almost 700 years until the end of the feudal age in 1868. They continued to be influential into the modern era as some of the earliest adopters of Western technology.

At the center of the garden stands the Iso Residence. The residence was originally built in 1658 along with the rest of the garden, but the current building dates back mostly to a mid 1880s reconstruction. After the end of the feudal age, the Iso Residence became the main residence of the Shimazu family, and its rooms are preserved in the way they were used in the 1890s. The interior of the residence can be viewed at an additional cost (see details).

Senganen has a variety of plants, which make the garden interesting in all four seasons. There are a number of cherry trees, especially of the early flowering Kanhizakura variety, which open as early as late January. Other cherry tree varieties provide flowers through mid April.

Towards the end of the Edo Period, the Shuseikan Industrial Complex was constructed on the Senganen grounds as part of early local efforts to produce iron for shipbuilding and casting cannons. A large part of the industrial complex is not standing anymore today, but some of its surviving structures, foundations and auxiliary sites have received world heritage status in summer 2015 as part of the Sites of Japan's Meiji Industrial Revolution.

Among the world heritage sites are the foundations of a reverberatory furnace, located inside Senganen's paid area not far from the entrance gate. Furthermore, just outside the garden stands a long stone building that functioned as one of Japan's earliest Western-style machinery factories and now houses the Shoko Shuseikan Museum about the Shimazu Clan and their early efforts at industrialization. Entry to the museum is included in the garden's admission ticket (the museum's main building is currently closed for renovations until October 2024, but the annex building remains open).

Charcoal and hydropower were important sources of energy used to power the machinery at the industrial complex. For that reason, the ruined remains of a charcoal kiln and a sluice gate were also recognized as world heritage sites. Note that the remains of the kiln and sluice gate are located several kilometers away in the nearby hills above Senganen, and are difficult to reach by public transport. Access by rental car is recommended.

The final related site added to the world heritage list is the Ijinkan, a residence for foreign engineers who helped design and build a textile mill in the area. The residence is located a short walk from Senganen and is open to the public. Entry to the Ijinkan requires a separate fee and is not included in the Senganen Garden's admission ticket.

Getting there and around

Senganen Garden and the Ijinkan can be reached by the City View Bus in about 50 minutes or by the Machimeguri Bus in about 35 minutes from Kagoshima Chuo Station.

How to get to and around Kagoshima

Hours and Fees

Senganen Garden

Hours

Closed

Admission

Ijinkan

Hours

Closed

Admission

Hotels around Kagoshima

Top rated in Kagoshima
Budget:
    • Sheraton Kagoshima
      Luxury
      Sheraton Kagoshima has a fitness centre, garden, a terrace and restaurant in Kagoshima. This 5-star hotel offers a business centre and a concierge service. The accommodation offers room service, a 24-hour front desk and currency exchange for guests. The hotel will provide guests with air-conditioned rooms with a desk, a coffee machine, a fridge, a minibar, a safety deposit box, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with a bidet. Sheraton Kagoshima features some units with city views, and all rooms have a kettle. At the accommodation all rooms include bed linen and towels. A buffet breakfast is available every morning at Sheraton Kagoshima. Spa and wellness facilities including a sauna and a hot spring bath are at guests' disposal during their stay at the hotel. Guests at Sheraton Kagoshima will be able to enjoy activities in and around Kagoshima, like hiking and fishing. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Kagoshima Chuo Station, Korai Bridge and Museum of the Meiji Restoration. The nearest airport is Kagoshima Airport, 39 km from Sheraton Kagoshima.
      View on Booking.com
      9.0Booking.com
    • SHIROYAMA HOTEL kagoshima
      Luxury
      Featuring an open-air natural hot spring bath overlooking Sakurajima Volcano and the sea, SHIROYAMA HOTEL kagoshima offers a spa centre, 7 dining options and a concierge. Rooms have free wired internet. Some rooms come with a view of Sakurajima volcano and Kinko-wan Bay. All are equipped with an LCD TV with satellite channels, a fridge and a safe. The spa at SHIROYAMA HOTEL kagoshima offers a mist sauna, a flower bath and massage treatments. Guests can also enjoy karaoke and shopping. Restaurant Le Ciel offers panoramic city views and Western food, while other restaurants serve Japanese and Chinese specialities. Castle Park houses its own bakery and brewery. A free bus circulates between SHIROYAMA HOTEL kagoshima, JR Kagoshima Chuo Station and downtown area Tenmonkan, both a 10-minute drive away.
      View on Booking.com
      8.9Booking.com
    • FAV HOTEL KAGOSHIMACHUO
      Luxury
      FAV HOTEL KAGOSHIMACHUO is set in Kagoshima, within 2.9 km of Kagoshima Station and less than 1 km of Xavier Taika Kinenhi. Featuring a terrace, the 4-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a private bathroom. The hotel has family rooms. All guest rooms at the hotel come with a flat-screen TV and a kitchenette. At FAV HOTEL KAGOSHIMACHUO the rooms come with bed linen and towels. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Kagoshima Chuo Station, Museum of the Meiji Restoration and Korai Bridge. The nearest airport is Kagoshima Airport, 38 km from FAV HOTEL KAGOSHIMACHUO.
      View on Booking.com
      8.7Booking.com
    • GRAND BASE Kagoshima Tenmonkan
      Mid-range
      Situated within 2.7 km of Kagoshima Chuo Station and 1.6 km of Kagoshima Station in Kagoshima, GRAND BASE Kagoshima Tenmonkan features accommodation with free WiFi and seating area. There is a private entrance at the aparthotel for the convenience of those who stay. The aparthotel has family rooms. Every unit features air conditioning, a flat-screen TV, washing machine, kettle and kitchenette. The units are equipped with heating facilities. Popular points of interest near the aparthotel include Central Park, Minato Odori Park and Kagoshima City Museum of Art. The nearest airport is Kagoshima Airport, 39 km from GRAND BASE Kagoshima Tenmonkan.
      View on Booking.com
      8.7Booking.com
    • GRAND BASE Kagoshima
      Mid-range
      Located in Kagoshima, 1.3 km from Kagoshima Chuo Station and 2.5 km from Kagoshima Station, GRAND BASE Kagoshima offers free WiFi and air conditioning. There is a private entrance at the aparthotel for the convenience of those who stay. The aparthotel features family rooms. Each unit is equipped with a fully equipped kitchen with a microwave, a seating area, a flat-screen TV, a washing machine, and a private bathroom with bidet and slippers. A fridge and kitchenware are also provided, as well as a kettle. The units are equipped with heating facilities. Popular points of interest near the aparthotel include Museum of the Meiji Restoration, Korai Bridge and Xavier Taika Kinenhi. The nearest airport is Kagoshima Airport, 38 km from GRAND BASE Kagoshima.
      View on Booking.com
      8.7Booking.com
    • GRAND BASE Kagoshima Chuo
      Mid-range
      Set within 1.1 km of Kagoshima Chuo Station and 3.2 km of Kagoshima Station, GRAND BASE Kagoshima Chuo offers rooms with air conditioning and a private bathroom in Kagoshima. It is situated 1.5 km from Museum of the Meiji Restoration and features a lift. The aparthotel has family rooms. Each unit has a fully equipped kitchenette with a microwave, a seating area, a flat-screen TV, a washing machine, and a private bathroom with hot tub and slippers. Free WiFi is accessible to all guests, while selected rooms also feature a balcony. At the aparthotel, units are fitted with bed linen and towels. Popular points of interest near the aparthotel include Xavier Taika Kinenhi, St. Xavier Church and Korai Bridge. The nearest airport is Kagoshima Airport, 37 km from GRAND BASE Kagoshima Chuo.
      View on Booking.com
      8.6Booking.com
    • Daiwa Roynet Hotel Kagoshima Tenmonkan PREMIER - former Daiwa Roynet Hotel Kagoshima Tenmonkan
      Luxury
      Featuring 4-star accommodation, Daiwa Roynet Hotel Kagoshima Tenmonkan PREMIER - former Daiwa Roynet Hotel Kagoshima Tenmonkan is situated in Kagoshima, 1.8 km from Kagoshima Chuo Station and 2 km from Kagoshima Station. Among the facilities of this property are a restaurant, a 24-hour front desk and luggage storage space, along with free WiFi throughout the property. St. Xavier Church is 700 metres away and Korai Bridge is 1.1 km from the hotel. The hotel will provide guests with air-conditioned rooms with a desk, a kettle, a fridge, a safety deposit box, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with a shower. At Daiwa Roynet Hotel Kagoshima Tenmonkan PREMIER - former Daiwa Roynet Hotel Kagoshima Tenmonkan the rooms include bed linen and towels. A buffet breakfast is available each morning at the accommodation. Popular points of interest near Daiwa Roynet Hotel Kagoshima Tenmonkan PREMIER - former Daiwa Roynet Hotel Kagoshima Tenmonkan include Central Park, Xavier Taika Kinenhi and Sengoku Tenjin. The nearest airport is Kagoshima Airport, 38 km from the hotel.
      View on Booking.com
      8.6Booking.com
    • Solaria Nishitetsu Hotel Kagoshima
      Luxury
      Opened in 2012, Solaria Nishitetsu Hotel Kagoshima is just a 2-minute walk from JR Kagoshima-Chuo Train Station and features a French restaurant and massage services. Its modern rooms impress with a 4-star decor and a spacious shower room with a bathtub. Free WiFi is available throughout the premises. Polished wood panelling, soft lights and plush carpets await guests in the rooms at Kagoshima Solaria Nishitetsu Hotel. Each room has an LCD TV with channels including CNN and China Central Television (CCTV), a fridge and an electric kettle with green tea, and the bathing area and toilet are separated for improved hygiene. Some rooms have views of Sakurajima volcano. The hotel is a 5-minute drive from the Ishin Furusato-kan Museum, which focuses on the Meiji Restoration. Sengan-en Japanese Garden is 6 km away. A free-use internet PC can be found at the lobby, and the 24-hour front desk offers laptops to guests at a surcharge. A coin launderette is available for use. A Japanese/Western breakfast is served for an extra fee at Kuwahara Restaurant, where French course lunches and dinners can also be enjoyed.
      View on Booking.com
      8.5Booking.com
    • Henn na Hotel Kagoshima Tenmonkan
      Luxury
      Situated 1.6 km from Kagoshima Chuo Station, Henn na Hotel Kagoshima Tenmonkan offers 4-star accommodation in Kagoshima and features a restaurant. The property is located 200 metres from Sengoku Tenjin, 700 metres from Central Park and 700 metres from Terukuni Shrine. The hotel has a sauna, a 24-hour front desk and free WiFi. The hotel will provide guests with air-conditioned rooms offering a desk, a kettle, a fridge, a safety deposit box, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with a bidet. An Asian breakfast is available each morning at Henn na Hotel Kagoshima Tenmonkan. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Kagoshima Station, Xavier Taika Kinenhi and St. Xavier Church. The nearest airport is Kagoshima Airport, 38 km from Henn na Hotel Kagoshima Tenmonkan.
      View on Booking.com
      8.5Booking.com
    • Hotel Gran Cerezo Kagoshima
      Mid-range
      Featuring an on-site bar and public baths, Hotel Gran Cerezo Kagoshima offers free WiFi throughout the property. Private parking is available on site. Kagoshima Chuo Station is a 7-minute tram ride. All air-conditioned rooms are fitted with a flat-screen TV and electric kettle. Amenities include toothbrushes, pajamas, refrigerator and desk. Featuring views of Sakurajima Island, an on-site restaurant Kizuna serves Japanese and Western-style dishes prepared with local produces. The hotel has a 24-hour front desk that offers free luggage storage. The entire property is non-smoking and guests can smoke in the designated smoking area. For guests' convenience, a drinks vending machine is provided. Tenmonkan Park is a 7-minute stroll away from Hotel Gran Cerezo Kagoshima and Water Front Park is situated a 10-minute drive away.
      View on Booking.com
      8.5Booking.com