All About Japan

10 Spots for an Easy Autumn Stroll in Tokyo

| Autumn Colors , Tokyo

We’ve selected 10 easy-to-access spots in metropolitan Tokyo that make for a great stroll through fall foliage.

Read more in Japanese from All About walking guide Takeki Masuda.

10. Tamagawa Aqueduct: Naito-Shinjuku Water Promenade

This road runs along Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden, which is just a short walk from JR Shinjuku Station. While it costs money to get into Shinjuku Gyoen, this spot is free. Although there aren't a great number of trees, visitors can definitely enjoy the maple and ginkgo. Curtain time is from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m, and the garden is closed on Mondays. We particularly recommend visiting between the end of November and early December when a carpet of ginkgo leaves appears.

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9. Koishikawa Korakuen

The closest station to this spot is Iidabashi Station on the Toei Oedo Subway Line. Take Exit C3 and walk three minutes. You can also access Koishikawa Korakuen by walking eight minutes from JR Iidabashi Station. Koishikawa Korakuen is famous for originally being the mansion of the Mito clan. Inside the garden, visitors can enjoy the autumn presentation of more than 500 trees. Autumn leaves reflected on the surface of the water make a beautiful sight. General admission is ¥300.

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8. Kyu-Furukawa Gardens

The Kyu-Furukawa Gardens can be reached by walking 12 minutes from Komagome Station on the JR Yamanote Line. The closest stations are Kami-Nakazato on the Keihin Tohoku Line and Nishigahara Station on the Tokyo Metro Namboku Line, both of which are seven minutes’ walk to the gardens. The Kyu-Furukawa Gardens are famous for their roses, but the Japanese maple trees found in these Japanese-style gardens are also charming. Admission is ¥150, or you can get a combined ticket with nearby Rikugi-en for ¥400.

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7. Meiji Jingu Gaien

Meiji Jingu Gaien's golden road, lined with 146 ginkgo trees and extending for about 300 meters (328 yards), is a sight to see. Stations close to Aoyama-dori are Tokyo Metro Subway’s Gaiemmae (Ginza Line) and Aoyama-itchome (Hanzomon Line) stations. Stations close to Meiji Jingu Gaien on the art gallery side are Sendagaya and Shinanomachi on the JR Chuo/Sobu lines.

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6. Kyu-Iwasaki-tei Garden

The nearest station to the Kyu-Iwasaki-tei Garden is Yushima Station on the Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line, part of the famous old "Yanesen" neighborhood. Walk three minutes from the station to reach the garden. When the majestic ginkgo in the middle of the garden changes color, its fallen leaves create a blanketed, gold-colored world. With other trees such as Japanese maple, guest are sure to get their fill of autumn leaves!

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5. Hibiya Park

Hibiya Park is right by Kasumigaseki Station. It can also be reached by walking eight minutes from JR Yurakucho Station. A variety of autumn leaves can be enjoyed in this vast park full of trees, among them the Kubikake ("put your neck on the line") ginkgo in front of Matsumotoro Restaurant.

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4. Chinzan-so Garden

Chinzan-so Garden, located on the Hotel Chinzan-so Tokyo property, is about 10 minutes’ walk from Exit 1A of Edogawabashi Station on the Tokyo Metro Yurakucho Line. Look down from the restaurant to enjoy the beautiful autumn leaves, and you may also glimpse some of the season's migratory birds. The contrast between the garden and the three-storied pagoda is also lovely. Chinzan-so Garden is beautiful by day, but is a sight particularly worth seeing when lit up at night—definitely recommended!

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3. Happo-en

Happo-en is one minute’s walk from Exit 2 of Shirokanedai Station on the Tokyo Metro Namboku and Toei Mita lines. The autumn leaves in this vast Japanese garden are breathtaking. From the Thrush Café inside the park, visitors can enjoy a panoramic view of the expansive garden along with lunch, dinner or coffee.

2. Kiyosumi Garden

This garden is located three minutes’ walk from Kiyosumi-shirakawa Station on the Toei Oedo and Tokyo Metro Hanzomon lines. The goby and ginkgo trees change color in this kaiyushiki rinsen (circular walking) garden, whose design centers on a lake, artificial hills and a traditional dry landscape garden. General admission is ¥150.

1. Rikugi-en

Rikugi-en is seven minutes’ walk from Komagome Station on the JR Yamanote Line and the Tokyo Metro Namboku Line. This vast, meticulously maintained Japanese garden has a large number of Japanese maple trees. Each year, the garden is lit up during the evening between late November and early December. Admission is ¥300; a combined ticket for Rikugi-en and the nearby Kyu-Furukawa Gardens costs ¥400.

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Read more in Japanese from All About walking guide Takeki Masuda.