Autumn is a beautiful time to visit Japan. The weather is great, bright colors paint the city, and the smell of sweet potatoes fills the air. In Tokyo, there are a few places to enjoy autumn colors within the city and we recommend the following sites.
Everyone knows where Meiji Shrine is located, but many do not know that there is an outer area of the shrine know as Meiji Jingu Gaien. During the fall season, the street lined up with ginkgo trees is a treat for the eyes. At the end of this ginkgo avenue, a festival is held for a few weeks on the Rubber Baseball Fields called Ichou Matsuri or Ginkgo Festival. Not only can you take some great photos, but also get your fill of delicious food.
Near Iidabashi Station, is the Koishikawa Korakuen Garden. It is one of the best and oldest Japanese garden in Tokyo. It was built on the residence of the Mito Family, one of the three branches of the Tokugawa Clan. Koishikawa Korakuen Garden has both Chinese and Japanese elements and follows the same ideal of Korakuen in Okayama. The viewpoint from the bridge is stunning even though you can see the Tokyo Dome in the background.
At the main gate of Tokyo University, there is a road lined with ginkgo trees. This avenue leads to the famed Yasuda Auditorium, which is the symbol for Tokyo or Todai University. The main gate is called Akamon and there are no special requirements to walk on campus. Along with the ginkgo trees are old buildings reminiscent of the Taisho Period (1912-1926). The combination of red brick buildings with the bright colored ginkgo trees makes it a pleasant place to enjoy.
Rikugien is one of top gardens in Tokyo. The name of the garden literally translates to “six poems garden.” It was originally built during the Edo Period by the 5th Tokugawa Shogun. There are a few beautiful spots to view the autumn leaves, but the area around the Tsutsuji Teahouse is the best place to stroll around. Also, this garden is one of the few that has an illumination highlighting the fall colors at night.
In the outskirts area of Tokyo is where the Showa Memorial Park is located. This expansive park was built to commemorate the 50th anniversary since Emperor Showa’s reign in 1983. Bike rentals are available and designated bicycle routes go through the entire park. In the large pond area both pedal and row boats can be rented for a nominal fee. Exploring the park surrounded by all the fall foliage is a treat to not miss out on.