Kita City Ward is a perfect reminder that not everything is as it seems. Green spaces running for kilometres along rivers, nature parks, cherry blossom heavens and a stunning relationship between east and west makes the parks and gardens of the city a most fascinating destination. Here is an introduction to some of the natural spaces of Kita and how to access them.
Arakawa Akabane Park
Located at the eastern end of an incredible 11km-long green space along the southern banks of the Arakawa River, Arakawa Akabane Park finds its own southern boundary bordered by the Shingashi River. In between these two waterways lies an incredible display of cherry blossom trees making a trip here during spring a delight.
A 10-minute walk from Akabane-Iwabuchi Station on the Namboku Line.
Akabane Nature Observatory Park
Developed to showcase the natural environment before modern development, the Akabane Nature Observatory Park is home natural springs, turtle-filled ponds and a wooded grove. The park also features a small rice field and a traditional thatched-roof farmhouse adding further the sense of cultural heritage.
An 11-minute walk from Motohasunuma Station on the Mita Line.
Kyu-Furukawa Teien Garden
Combining the best of both worlds, Kyu-Furukawa Teien Garden sees a French and Italian-influenced Western garden merge with a beautifully traditional Japanese garden. A rose garden, Western mansion and a pond shaped with the Japanese character meaning heart are features here. A measly JPY150 admission fee may well be the bargain of the year.
A 7-minute walk from Kami-Nakasato Station on the JR Keihin-Tohoku Line or Nishigahara Station on the Namboku Line.
Family friendly Asukayama Park is one of Tokyo's oldest public paces. Enjoyed all the way back in the 18th century by the shoguns of the time, the park bursts with space, over 650 cherry blossoms, a couple of preserved railway vehicles and even a museum. A free monorail to the local station makes a visit even easier.
A 1-minute walk from Oji Station on the JR Keihin-Tohoku Line.