Considered one of the three most beautiful gardens in Japan, Kenrokuen Garden is a must-visit in Kanazawa, Ishikawa Prefecture. The garden is located right next to Kanazawa Castle, where the influential lords who ruled the area used to live during the samurai era. The successive lords created and maintained Kenrokuen as the outer garden of the castle for generations.
Among the many features in the garden, the distinctive Kotoji stone lantern uniquely built with twin pedestals of different lengths has become an icon of the city. But did you know that there are reproductions of the lantern in many other countries? The Kotoji lanterns have been presented as symbols of friendship with Kanazawa's seven sister cities abroad: Buffalo (USA), Irkutsk (Russia), Nancy (France), Suzhou (China), Ghent (Belgium), Jeonju (Korea), and Porto Alegre (Brazil). Another little-known secret even among the locals, is that Kanazawa's Kotoji lantern can also be found in the Portland Japanese Garden in the USA, which is regarded as one of the greatest Japanese gardens in the world.
The feudal lord who installed the original lantern in Kenrokuen Garden would surely have been deeply moved if he knew its replicas were present around the world today. Why not visit Kanazawa to see the original Kotoji lantern? A visit to Kenrokuen will give you a deep understanding of Japanese gardens!
Kotoji stone lantern replica in the Japanese Garden of Buffalo (USA)
Kotoji stone lantern replica in the Citadelpark of Ghent (Belgium)
Kotoji stone lantern replica in the Moinhos de Vento of Porto Alegre (Brazi)