Fall colors – Kou yoh in Japanese – is one of the best attractions in autumn in Japan like cherry blossoms in spring.
About this time of the year, everyone looks forward to visiting their favorite spots for fall colors and enjoy the ephemeral beauty of the colored leaves.
Ritsurin Garden is one of the most popular spots for fall colors / autumn foliage in Kagawa Prefecture.
The 2019 Autumn night illumination will take place in the Ritsurin Garden between the 23rd of November and the 1st of December.
During the night illumination, you can ride on a night Wasen Boat, and enjoy the garden from on the water.
If you happen to be in Takamatsu between the 23rd of November and the 1st of December, I’d recommend you to come to Ritsurin Garden and enjoy the fall colors being illuminated by lights.
If you wanna know more about the Ritsurin Garden, you can click here to find out about Ritsurin Garden on my article.
Please note that the pictures are from 2018.
Main Entrance at Ritsurin Garden
Being lit up at the entrance, it’s already so beautiful and atmospheric before entering the garden.
Sanuki Udon and Local Food stalls
Kagawa is the Udon Prefecture. when in Kagawa, you have to try Sanuki Udon.
I make a point to eat Sanuki Udon every time I come to this night illumination.It’s a little bit cold outside but the hot udon soup makes you warm.
There are also other stalls by local shops and sometimes there are hot plum wines using plums grown&harvested in the garden.
Beautifully manicured pine trees lit up
Not only the colored leaves but also pine trees are lit up in the garden.
Yellow, green, orange and red leaves; you can find lots of different colors in the garden.
Fall colors being lit up and reflected on the water.
Most fall colors densed areas are around Kikugetsu-Tei Teahouse(掬月亭), South Pond(南湖=Nanko) or Fukiage-Tei teahouse(吹上亭).
Enjoy Night Wasen Boat as the past feudal lords used to…
Wasen（和船） is a traditional Japanese wooden Boat.
Ritsurin garden operates night wasen boat rides from 5:30 pm to 8:00 pm every 15 minutes, with 10 rides in total during the illumination time.
Each ride can contain up to 6 people. You can buy a ticket from 4 pm at the main entrance on the day.
So if you want to secure your ticket, you have to be at the east gate/main entrance at 4 pm to buy it. The garden is big enough to spend 1.5 hours before you take a ride on the Wasen Boat.
The ride costs 610 yen per person and 300 yen for kids.
Japanese Teahouses are open at night
The great thing about this illumination is most of teahouses in the garden are open until the garden closes. So you can enjoy grilled Mochi(rice cakes) or hot drinks to make you feel warmer.
The picture above is of Fukiage tea teahouse at the south pond. They offer home-made Sanuki Udon and other local specialties. It’s slightly more expensive than at stalls but the quality is very high.
Eating Mochi with sweet red bean paste on top and watching the reflection of the bridge on the water is absolutely a fantastic experience.
On the 1st of December, a special stage will be set up at Kikugetsu-Tei teahouse(掬月亭). And there’ll be a live concert by local musicians.
Opening Hours: 6:30 am – 9:00 pm during the spring night illumination. Last entry: 8:30pm.
Entrance: 〒760-0073 香川県高松市栗林町１丁目２０−１６
Admission: 410 yen for adults and 170 yen for kids. Wasen Boat ride: 610 yen for adults, 300 yen for kids over 6 years old.
Note: there are live concerts on the 24th of November (Sat) and the 1st of December taking place in front of Shoko-Shourei Kan（Commerce & industry promotion hall). There is another live concert by local artists on a stage in front of Kikugetsu-Tei Teahouse at the South Pond.
If you have any questions, please leave your questions in the comment box below. I’ll try to get your questions answered asap.