WJS Magazine › SPOT › Experience ancient Edo in Kawagoe


Experience ancient Edo in Kawagoe

by Eva 3542

WJS Magazineをシェアしよう!

Today I would like to introduce you town Kawagoe
known as ,, Little Edo" located only 45 minutes from central 
Tokyo. Kawagoe is suitable as a day trip destination. 
You can experience here relaxing ancient Edo atmosphere
and in these days still autumn leaves viewing.

During Edo period, Kawagoe used to be an important 

location for strategic purposes as well as for trade. It 

served as a supplier of commodities for Edo (current


Recommended Route by Train:

Seibu Shinjuku station (or Takadanobaba station)→

Honkawagoe station

From Seibu Shinjuku station take Seibu Shinjuku

line to Hon-Kawagoe station. By limited express it will

take approximately 43 minutes and by express train

approximately one hour.

Price of Tickets: 

Seibu Shinjuku station→Hon-Kawagoe station 1000 Yen

Recommended Route

Hon-Kawagoe stationKita-in temple

Warehouse DistrictThe Bell TowerCandy Alley

Honmaru GotenHon-Kawagoe station

Duration:  1 hour 30 minutes walk + shrine visit,

                shopping and meal time

1. Kita-in Temple (喜多院-きたいん )

Kita-in temple is located approximately fifteen minutes

from Hon-Kawagoe station. It is one of the most famous

temple in Greater Tokyo area and is the head temple of

the buddhist Tendai sect in Kanto region. During Tokugawa

Ieyasu government, Kita-in temple was protected by regime. 

In 1638, a fire destroyed most of the temple and Kita-in

was rebuilt by Ieyasu Tokunaga`s grandson, Iemitsu.

When Tokugawa Ieyasu passed away, a memorial service

was held at Kita-in and his remains were transported to

Nikko`s Toshogu shrine.

Take a walk around Kita-in park as it is very relaxing and

you can enjoy here viewing of autumn leaves.

Kita-in temple is also famous for five hundred fourty stone 

statues called Gokyaku Rakan. These statues are located 

in a small separate couryard and represents the disciples 

of Buddha and each of statues shows some emotions 

in their facial expressions.

Opening Hours:  8:50~16:30

                        (until 16:00 from end of November to


Closing Days:     December 25 to January 8

                         February 2 to 3

                         April 2 to 5

                         August 16

Admission Fee:   Adults 400 yen

2. Warehouse District ,,Kurazukuri no Machinami"

(蔵造りの町並み - からづくりのまちなみ)

Approximately fifteen minutes from Kita-in temple you

will find one hundred meters long Kawagoe`s main street 

which transfers you to past centuries. Its famous clay-walled 

warehouse-styled buildings "kurazukuri" retains old 

atmosphere of ancient Edo period (1603-1867). Thanks to

the thriving trade, merchants built their storehouses and 

stores to show their wealth. The houses has thick layers

of walls which was fireproof and helped to protect storage

against thieves.

3. The Bell Tower (時の鐘-ときのかね)

The Bell Tower is located close to the main street and 

it is one of the main symbols of Kawagoe town. In 1893,

the Great Kawagoe Fire had destroyed the previous 

structure and new tower was rebuilt a year later.

The Bell Tower still chimes four times a day at 6:00,

at noon time, at 15:00 and 18:00. 

4. Candy Alley ,,Kashiya Yokocho"

(菓子屋横丁 - かしや よこちょ)

Candy alley is famous for traditional candy and sweets 

shops which is located in adjacent street. Kawagoe as well 

as this area are mainly known for traditional potatoes sweets. 

Candy Alley was founded in early Meiji period. After Tokyo 

was damaged in the Great Kanto Earthquacke in 1923,

Candy Alley has become the main producer and supplier

of candies. There used to be around seventy candy shops

in this area. Although currently you can find here only 

twenty two shops the atmosphere of the alley and spirit

of the store still remains. In some sweets shops you may 

watch the process of producing the sweets. Each shop has 

a different recipe and own process therefore you can find 

here a huge variety of sweets.

Opening Hours:  usually 10:00~17:00 based on shop                                         

Opening Days:   usually closed on Mondays or Wednesdays


5. Honmaru Goten (本丸御殿 ほんまるごてん )

Honmaru Goten is the oldest building in Kawagoe and 

the only surviving building of former Kawagoe Castle. It 

used to serve as offices and seat of lord. Kawagoe Castle

was built in 1457 under shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu`s reign. 

Current Honmaru Goten was opened to public in 2011 

and is only a part of what was reconstructed in 1848. 

Opening Hours:  9:00~17:00

                         (entrance until 16:30)                                         

Opening Days:    closed on Mondays or following day if
                         Monday is national holiday
                         4th Fridays of each month (except
                         national holidays)
                         from December 29 to January 3
Admission Fee:  Adults 100 yen (only for the temple)