Over in West London, nestled within Holland Park, is a charming, hyper-Instagrammable, oasis of calm. Kyoto Garden is found almost smack in the middle of the park and is equally captivating whether you stumble upon it by accident or journey there with intention.
Capping off the park’s stunning sights is the park’s roaming muster of peacocks (yes, that is the collective noun for a group of peacocks, just in case you were wondering). When you’re mid-snap and one of those colourful creatures wanders into the frame, it truly makes for a magical shot. They’re also dazzling to simply watch as they make their way around the park.
The addition to Holand Park was originally built, in 1991, to celebrate the upcoming 1992 Japan Festival in London. The park was a gift from the city of Kyoto, honouring the friendship between the countries of Japan and Great Britain.
Holland Park was also graced with a further addition in 2012, with the installation of The Fukushima Garden. The garden was built “to commemorate the heartfelt gratitude of the Japanese people to the British people for their support following the natural disaster that struck Fukushima, Japan on 11 March 2011.”
Kyoto Garden features
Central to it all is the famous waterfall, which trickles into a pond with koi carp swimming around. But there’s plenty more to see than just the IG-famous water feature, with winding cobbled pathways, traditional Japanese stone lanterns, and more. It’s well worth a wander when you visit – to take a quick photo and then depart just as quickly ensures you will definitely miss out on some of the park’s hidden beauties.
And with sights like this, who needs a plane ticket to Japan? You’re likely to get so lost in the pretty trees and Japanese features that you’ll forget you’re just a stone’s throw away from High Street Kensington.
Kyoto Garden is always going to be there to bring a bit of zen to your life. It’s free to enter, so we suggest you lucky West Londoners visit as often as you can, whenever you need five minutes of peace.
A little dose of quiet reflection here and you’ll really feel at one with nature as you mingle with the local wildlife in Holland Park. It’s also equally captivating across all of London’s seasons – whether it’s watching the leaves change colour, the cherry blossoms bloom, the boulders and stones capped with snow, or all of it bathing in the warm sunshine. It’s simply beautiful.
It should be noted that during the warmer weather, the crowds can get a little busy during peak hours. But we reckon the sights and the colours are still worth the queue up to the waterfalls.