I remember updating facebook while sitting outside this Garden stating.. ‘I think I could possibly be, in the most gorgeous location in the world’..
The Shikinaen was constructed at the end of the 17th century as the second residence of the Ryukyu Kings. It features beautiful, relatively simple, wooden palace buildings with Okinawan style, red tile roofs and a spacious Japanese style landscape garden.
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Although I only had a short period of time in Okinawa, I made it worth while. During the day I made sure to hit up the most famous locations possible, and at night.. fill myself up on some of the local Okinawa Soba and Awamori. Both true delights and worth a try if you visit.
The pleasant garden can be viewed from a circular path, which leads through the woods, along the ponds, over the bridges and past a pretty hexagonal building on a small islet. While designed in a style seen elsewhere in Japan, the garden is given a distinct Okinawa flavor by its buildings and subtropical flora.
Shikinaen was completely destroyed in the Battle of Okinawa in 1945, but has been neatly restored in the postwar years. In 2000, Shikinaen was among the sites added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites under the collective title “Gusuku Sites and Related Properties of the Kingdom of Ryuku” Although this wont mean to much, its a great achievement.