Muramatsu Park

One of Niigata's top spots for sakura appreciation

Kim   - 2 min read

Of the myriad destinations to appreciate sakura season in Niigata, Muramatsu Park is widely regarded as one of the best. With a history dating back to 1906, the park is one of the prefecture's three entrants on Japan's Top 100 Cherry Blossom Viewing Destinations list (the other two are the Takada Castle Park and along the Ozoku Canal), and the grounds are home to several thousand sakura trees for visitors to enjoy.

It's not just during sakura season that the park is worth visiting, though. Stop by a little later in spring and there are azaleas, peonies, and hydrangeas in bloom, and during autumn the precincts are ablaze with the color of the season's changing leaves. There is an observation deck where you can get a beautiful vantage point of the park from above, plus some fantastic views out over the surrounding Gosen City area. On clear days, you can see all the way to Niigata City.

In addition to the beauty of the flowers and foliage at Muramatsu Park, there are also two shrines on the grounds (Atago Shrine and Okiku-inari Shrine), several koi-filled ponds, and a variety of playground equipment if you're visiting with children in tow.

Torii arches at Okiku-inari Shrine on the park grounds
Torii arches at Okiku-inari Shrine on the park grounds (Photo: Shinya ICHINOHE / CC BY-NC 2.0)

Admission to the park is free of charge.

Getting there

Muramatsu Park is located approximately 10 minutes by car from the Gosen Station area (JR Ban'etsu West Line), or around 25 minutes driving time from the Yasuda IC on the Ban-Etsu Expressway. On-site parking is available for up to 300 vehicles - typically parking is free, but during sakura season there is a small fee of ¥ 500.

Bus services are also available from the station to the park grounds – take the Gosen City Fureai Bus for approximately 15 minutes until you reach the Gakkoucho 2-chome stop. From there, the park is just a couple of minutes away on foot.

Kim

Kim @kim.b

Perma-expat, fan of gardens, flowers, teahouses, cute food, road trips, and writing lists. 📝