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Gorgeous floral archways at Japanese Cemetery Park in Hougang look like springtime in Japan

Also a way to draw people to learn about the past.

Ashley Tan | July 16, 07:50 pm

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Those who missed out on Japan’s famous cherry blossoms this year can consider an alternative much closer to home.

Home to 910 tombstones

Located in the midst of Hougang is a Japanese Cemetery Park, which is about three hectares — roughly the size of three football fields.

It was first built in 1891 by three Japanese brothel-keepers to house Japanese prostitutes who have died in Singapore. Now, the 910-tombstone park mainly holds the remains of Japanese residents.

In 1973, however, the government prohibited any more burials in 42 cemeteries including the Japanese cemetery, The Straits Times reported.

Now, the scenic cemetery serves as a memorial park.

The park is known for its lush greenery and Japanese-inspired architecture.

Photo from Sherab Tenzin / FB

Aesthetic archways

The place, however, has recently seen more visitors looking to snap a photo to spruce up their social media feed.

The park is home to a long row of archways decorated with a native plant species, bougainvillea.

When the flowers are in bloom, the archways make for a picturesque photo reminiscent of springtime in temperate countries.

Here’s what it looks like:

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Japanese Cemetery Park ************************** The history of Cemetery Park goes all the way back to the end of the 19th century. A Japanese brothel owner, Tagajiro Fukaki, donated seven acres of his rubber plantation to be used as a burial ground for young Japanese women which died in destitution. The British Colonial Government officially granted permission for this use on 26th June 1891. Since then it was used to bury Japanese residents. During World War II ( 1942-1945 ), the cemetery was used to bury Japanese civilians and soldiers who lost their lives in the battle field or illness. No one has been buried here since 1973 as this cemetery was one of the 42 cemeteries where burials were prohibited by the government. The young Japanese prostitutes, civilians and soldiers rest in this place under Southern Cross Stars. This cemetery park, which is the largest in South East Asia, tells us the history of Japan and Singapore. The Japanese Association Singapore maintains the Park which is often visited by Japanese students, residents and tourists. The tombstones are neatly laid out harmoniously with its surroundings and the park offers visitors peace and transquility.

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And here are some shots of the place without the flowers in bloom:

Photo from Tanya Ong

Pretty aesthetic but do not forget the significance of this place while you take photos there.

Address: 22 Chuan Hoe Ave, Singapore 549854

Opening hours: Monday to Sunday, 8pm to 6:30pm

Top photo from @omatanali and @angiethetomato / IG

About Ashley Tan

Ashley can't go a week without McDonalds.

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