Okusawa shrine in Jiyugaoka

Leaving Sinajina bonsai shop in Jiyugaoka, I stopped recently at Okusawa shrine. Jiyugaoka is a very pleasant residential neighborhood, with many free-standing houses and gardens.

This shrine is an incredibly peaceful and magical oasis: mature trees, a beautiful structure, and, apart from the two friends I was with, not a person was visible. It amazes me that beautiful green spaces in Tokyo can be open to the public without guards or attendants, and still remain pristine and inviting.


  1. I really love this place too – I often spend new year’s days when I was in childhood, to meet my grandparents. btw can I also try one Bonsai at the school Shinajina? very much interested.

    1. Tzuchiya, that’s very cool that you visited as a child. It felt so quiet when we were there, almost like it was a secret place. I highly recommend the two hour bonsai-making classes at Sinajina: they are offered several times per month. I’ll post next week about the class I attended (my second). Please check their website for class schedule.

      For now, classes are taught only in Japanese. However, Kobayashi sensei recently hired a bilingual American staff (a former Tokyo University of Agriculture Research Fellow), and I am sure they will soon offer classes in English. If you have a group that wants to take a class in English, please contact Matthew at Sinajina to talk about setting it up.

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