When residents of Omiya need a break from the city, many of them head to Omiya Park. This large park is a haven for the busy in need of relaxation and for families looking for a place to go and chill out on the weekend.
Of course there are many things to do besides just relaxing on a bench or having a picnic among the trees, but these activities are among the most popular.
For those that want to do a little more, there are lots of activities to do and things to see in the park as well. For example, small kids will enjoy the small zoo and its selection of small animals and birds. There is even one section of the zoo that allows you to walk through a habitat for birds as they walk and fly around you.
Also, there is a very nice Japanese garden on the path that leads from Hikawa Shrine, one of the entrances to the park, to the zoo. This garden has its own entrance off the path but is easily visible from the path as you walk by.
Sports enthusiasts, especially J-League soccer fans, will know of Nack5 Stadium that is located within the park's boundaries (home of Omiya Ardijia). This stadium was built in the 1960's but is still in pretty good condition, owing to some restoration work a number of years ago.
Next to the soccer stadium is a baseball stadium that looks like it would be used for some of the high school games or even a farm team for a NPB team. However, after much searching the empty stadium on the day I visited, I was unable to determine who used the stadium.
The most unique venue in the park is the cycling velodrome used for professional cycling competitions. On the day that I happened to visit, the building was open but there were no competitions on at that track, but some cyclists were practicing and there were races at other tracks on the TV monitors.
The area closest to the stadiums is also where the parking areas are and yet another entrance.
In addition, the Saitama Prefectural Museum of History and Folklore is located in the park as well.
So if you need a break from the everyday, head on up to Omiya Park in Saitama where there will be something for you to do and enjoy there.