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     Katsura Imperial Villa
  The Katsura area is located near the Katsura River, and was famous for moon viewing from ancient times.
In the Heian Era, there were many villas owned by aristocrats. They gathered and enjoyed moon viewing banquet.
Katsura villa appears in the Genji Monogatari (the Tale of Genji) as an noted moon viewing pace.
Katsurarikyu was planned and structured elaborately as the moon viewing stage.
Katsura Imperial Villa was constructed as a second house of Hachijo-no-Miya family in the early Edo Period.
Kosoin was completed in 1616. Other buildings are completed as follows, Tyushoin in 1649, Shingoten in 1663.
In the Edo Period, the water level of ponds in Katsurarikyu was same as the Katsura River.
At the important points of garden pond, wharves and boat cabins were located.
Therefore, boats were able to row out to the Katsura River easily. and the guests enjoyed boating, wining, composing tanka poems and so on.
The major four elements of Japanese garden are water, rock, vegetation and architecture.
All of them were elaborately arranged and placed in the katsurarikyu garden.
Villas and cottages are located with moderate distance with each other. The location is desined so that the architectures are invisable with each other by being hided with low hills or trees.
Many highlight spots are arranged everywhere in the garden.
So, new impressive sceneries will open up to you at every several steps.
The influential German architect Bruno Taut argued as follows.
"Actually, it is absoutely impossible to be simpler and to be more luxurious at the same time."
"The prominent beauty here is beyond my imagination. The beauty is caused by the great art. When I encounter splendid art, teas overflow from my eyes naturally."

          Path 1  
  Katsuragaki Hedge-Main Gate-Miyuki Path- Miyuki Gate
  Path 2  
  Sotokoshikake-Shore Path-Suhama Shore- Shokintei   
  Path 3  
  Mountain Path-Shokatei-Enrindo-Shoiken  
  Path 4  
  Shoin-Moon View Veranda-Gepparo-
True Stepping Stone 
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