The bright spring of Tokyo’s parks and gardens

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If Tokyo is today one of the most densely populated cities in the world, its atmosphere is nevertheless particularly peaceful and welcoming, in particular thanks to its many green spaces.

With many parks and gardens in the capital, it’s easy to get away from the hustle and bustle of the main thoroughfares and get green in the peaceful surroundings these parks provide. All around Tokyo, you can also find lush nature, which is still largely unknown, and which is worth the detour.

The essentials

Right in the heart of Tokyo, you can easily find still wild corners of nature. If you go to the busy areas of Shinjuku or Shibuya, do not miss the shrine of Meiji Jingu and not far, the yoyogi park. To have a good time or to have fun by the lake, the ueno parkTHE Meguro Sky Gardenor the Shinjuku Imperial Garden are also must-see places.

  • The Meiji Jingu and its shrine

Meiji Jingu Shrine is a very popular place to walk especially in summer to escape the sweltering heat of the city. As a tribute to Emperor Meiji and Empress Shoken, the shrine is located in the heart of a large forest. Its huge trees completely drown out the sounds of the city and allow a total disconnect.

  • Yoyogi Park

A stone’s throw from Meiji Jingu Park, Yoyogi Park immerses you in a completely different atmosphere. Here, families, cosplayers or rock dancers mingle happily. Yoyogi koen is a place where all Tokyo talents come together and converge.

Formerly reserved for the imperial army, then the scene of the 1964 Olympic Games, it is today the bustling heart of Tokyo with these many relaxation and leisure areas: lake with high water jets, cycle paths, flower garden or even large lawns for lounging!

  • Find out more about Yoyogi-koen Park
  • Ueno Park

Well known for his zoo in the heart of Tokyo, Ueno Park is one of the 5 oldest parks in Japan. A place of culture and science with its many museums and art galleries, it is also a gathering place for Tokyoites during Hanami season. No less than 2 million people gather there each year under the cherry trees. The park’s most popular spots are undoubtedly Shinobazu Pond whose lotus flowers and water lilies completely cover it and its large lake whose boat and pedalo rides delight young and old alike.

  • Read more about the famous Ueno Park
  • Meguro Sky Garden

The Meguro Sky Garden is a park suspended more than 35 meters high. Overlooking the surrounding buildings, it allows you to isolate yourself from the street for a well-deserved nature break. This unusual rooftop offers a superb view of the surroundings and the buildings of Tokyo. When the weather is nice, Mount Fuji can even be seen there..

The traditional botanical gardens

THE japanese garden is a sacred space in Japan. Designed following the Zen philosophy, it embraces the elements of nature and plays with perspectives and dimensions. Inviting contemplation, the traditional Tokyo gardens make the surrounding buildings disappear and immerse their visitors in a landscape of bewitching beauty.

In Tokyo, the Hama-RikyuTHE Rikugian or the garden Koishikawa offer nice places to relax.

  • Koishikawa Garden

Located near the Tokyo Dome, it is the oldest botanical gardens. Dating back to the 17th century, at the beginning of the Edo period, the Koishikawa garden tries to reproduce Japanese and Chinese nature scenes in miniature. Whether clad in pink during the cherry blossom season, green in the summer or blushing in the fall, in all seasons the garden is worth a visit. Let yourself be guided by the stone paths between the magnificent period flowers, ponds and pontoons.

  • Shinjuku Gyoen

The second largest park, Shinjuku Imperial Garden has a long history. It was once the first zoological park in Tokyo which later moved to Ueno. Today, Shinjuku-gyoen is distinguished by its three gardens of different inspiration: a Japanese garden with several pavilions arranged around a pond, a French garden and an English garden with large green spaces and lawns.

  • Discover Shinjuku-gyoen!

Family green spaces

More open to the city, but no less popular when summer comes, these large green spaces allow families to have fun. Place of meeting and small break privileged by the Japanese, one gathers there, one picnics there, one makes sport there. Very well equipped, the Nakano Park or the Shôwa Memorial Park are among our favorites!

  • Nakano Park

In summer, families meet in Nakano central park, where many events and activities delight young and old alike. Amusement equipment, water jets to cool off, small farm and sale of local products, it’s impossible to get bored!

  • Sumida Walk river, the new place to relax

The banks of the Sumida River which crosses the capital are one of the most popular destinations for strolling.

Very close to Asakusa station, the Sumida Walk River is a path connecting Asakusa and the Tokyo SkyTree. 160 meters long promenade, the floor is made of glass to observe the boats passing below. The site, refurbished in 2020, promises you a unique moment thanks to the many surrounding attractions and its open-air shopping center named Mizumachi.

  • Showa Memorial Park

The Shôwa Memorial Park was inaugurated for the Golden Jubilee of the Shôwa Emperor in 1983. Japanese culture is present everywhere in the park, notably with a commemorative museum or the reconstruction of a village from the period. With more than 180 hectares to explore, Shôwa Park can be enjoyed all year round with family or friends thanks to its many attractions and leisure activities.

The little extra, the ginkgo bilobas that illuminate the park in autumn, an ideal time to walk there.

All the information on the green spaces of Tokyo on the site

Catherine Mills Avatar