OWL Magazine Korea

Nara Park, Sarusawa Pond – Sarusawaike

In the southern part of Nara Park, you’ll discover a small pond known as Sarusawa Pond. This picturesque spot offers a charming atmosphere and serves as an excellent location for capturing photos with Kofuku-ji Temple as the backdrop. The pond is an artificial water feature with a circumference of 360 meters.

“Sarusawa Pond in the Southern Part of Nara Park”

The reflection of the five-story pagoda of Kofuku-ji on Sarusawa Pond, seen through the trees, is considered one of the iconic landscapes representing Nara, alongside the Great Buddha at Todai-ji. The tranquil scenery features weeping willows, well-maintained walking paths, and the delightful sight of turtles sunbathing on rocks. Additionally, an event releasing carp fish is held every April 16th.

“A Serene Atmosphere by the Pond”

After visiting Gango-ji, I naturally directed myself towards Nara Park. The first place I reached was Sarusawa Pond. Since I had prepared to explore the pond, I took a leisurely walk while enjoying its scenic beauty.

As an artificial pond, its calm water provided an ideal setting for capturing reflection photos. Particularly, I was able to capture the background of Kofuku-ji’s pagoda seen in the distance.

“Stories Tied to the Pond”

Near the pond, there were stones inscribed with something written in Japanese—a monument conveying stories related to the pond. The inscriptions contained the following information:

  • The first inscription tells the tragic legend of Une-mae, a low-ranking palace lady who, unrequited in love, drowned herself in the pond. (A shrine dedicated to Une-mae’s spirit can also be found nearby.)
  • The second inscription relates to the Matsuri (festival) honoring Une-mae’s spirit.
  • The third inscription narrates the seven wonders of Sarusawa Pond:
    • The water is neither clear nor murky.
    • It neither flows out nor allows entry.
    • Only frogs live but not toads.
    • The water is 30%, and fish are 70%.

Sarusawa Pond, rich with various stories, provides a delightful place to appreciate Nara’s landscape. Located close to Nara Park, it is an ideal spot to visit while leisurely exploring the park.

“Nara, Artificial Pond – Sarusawa Pond”