Takaragaike-koen Park (宝ヶ池公園)
Takaragaike Pond was built as an agricultural irrigation pond in the Edo period. Takaragaike-koen Park was built for the people of the city to make use of this pond for recreation. This park consists of several areas: a walking trail with Mt. Hiei and Kyoto International Conference Center as a backdrop, the pond on which people can enjoy rowing boats, an athletic park on the other side of the hill and at the side of Matsugasaki Station on the Kyoto City Subway Karasuma Line, 'Kodomo no Rakuen' (Children's Paradise) which has play facilities for children, and 'Ikoi no Mori' (Recreation Woods) that links the pond and Kodomo no Rakuen.
It is designed so that people can enjoy flowers throughout the year, and it is very crowded in the spring when the cherry blossoms are out. Its rich natural environment containing a facility for watching birds can make people forget they are in Kyoto City. Many people enjoy jogging on the walking trail around the pond, where neighboring primary schools and junior high schools hold annual long-distance running competitions.
In the area in which Kodomo no Rakuen lies, there used to be Kyoto Bicycle Racing Track (Takaragaike Keirin Track) which became part of the park after bicycle racing was discontinued. Bleachers for spectators of the bicycle racing remained until 2006 when they were dismantled after becoming too old.
It is also known for inter-college rugby tournaments in the Kansai (Kyoto, Osaka and neighboring prefectures) area.
In 1950 the municipal bicycle racing track was built here, but because the then city council was opposed to the public operation of a gambling facility, it was closed in 1955, and was transformed into a park where, except for parents, people older than junior high school students were not admitted. Some bleachers of bicycle racing track facility remained in the park until recent days, but they were dismantled because they became too old.
The horse stables of Heian Kibatai (Kyoto Police Cavalry) can be found here.
Ikoi no Mori: close to Kokusai Kaikan Station on the Kyoto City Subway Karasuma Line
Kodomo no Rakuen: a three minute walk from Kyoto Bus "Takaragaike" bus stop (Route 5, 31, 65) or Takaragaike Station on the Eizan Electric Railway
Ball Game Stadium: a five minute walk from Matsugasaki Station on the Kyoto City Subway Karasuma Line