A Field of Rape Blossoms in Central Tokyo! Hamarikyu Gardens in March
Shimbashi, the gateway to Odaiba, Tokyo. If you approach Daiba Station on the Yurikamome Line, a veritable forest of skyrises, the Shiodome district, comes into view. The Hamarikyu Gardens are nestled in the depths of Shiodome. A “carpet of rape blossoms” blooms there every year in March.
A Yellow Carpet Within the City
The “yellow carpet” of rape blossoms is near Otemon Gate, about a 10-minute walk from Shimbashi Station. Apparently some 300,000 stalks of rape plant grow in this field! Unfortunately, when I visited the weather wasn’t too great (although the sky was clear when I left my home!), but the contrast between the skyscrapers and the rape blossoms was vivid and interesting to see.
Is this woman taking wedding photos, perhaps? I took a picture of the back of this kimono-wearing bride to commemorate my visit!
A ladybug is flying around the flowers.... It must be a messenger of spring!
A Poetic Plum Tree Grove
As you walk deeper into the field of rape blossoms, you’ll soon see a poetic plum tree grove in the vicinity of the water-bus pier.
From late February to mid-March, you can enjoy elegant plum blossoms in addition to the lovely rape blossoms in Tokyo and its surrounding areas.
I Recommend the Following Plum Tree Gardens Around Tokyo:
Other Tourist Attractions in Hamarikyu Gardens
Hamarikyu Gardens features water-bus piers, from which you can depart for Asakusa or Odaiba by water-bus. The waterway tour of the Tokyo metropolitan area is also highly recommended. Water-buses to Asakusa depart around every 30 minutes from about 10:00 to 16:00. Water-bus trips take about 60 minutes. The adult fare is 740 yen, while the child fare is 340 yen.
※As the pier is part of Hamarikyu Gardens, a separate admission fee for the Gardens is also required.
Please refer to the official web page for details.
Even though it was cloudy, I could still clearly see Odaiba’s beautiful Rainbow Bridge.
“Otsutaibashi Bridge” and “Nakajima no Ochaya”
There is a tidal pond, called “Shioiri no Ike” (“Incoming Tide Pond”), filled with water from Tokyo Bay, near the park’s Japanese gardens.
Across Otsutaibashi Bridge, which extends over the tidal pond, is Nakajima no Ochaya, a teahouse built on the island in the middle of the pond.
※Otsutaibashi Bridge (written “お伝い橋” in Japanese) has a total length of 118 meters.
The Hamarikyu Gardens were originally built for the Tokugawa shogunate in 1707. All of the buildings currently in the gardens were restored in 1983. I ordered a matcha and Japanese sweets set (510 yen) when I visited Nakajima no Ochaya. I really got a taste of what being a shogun must have felt like as I ate my sweets and took in the beauty of the gardens! This sort of luxury used to be exclusive for the ancient shoguns, and now it only costs around 500 yen to experience!
Basic Information on the Hamarikyu Gardens
The rape blossoms in Hamarikyu Gardens bloom between the beginning and end of March. In mid-March, the plum trees will be in bloom. And, beautiful cherry blossoms bloom in early April. There are around 100 cherry trees total in the area, including varieties like Yoshino and double-flowered cherry trees (yaezakura).
- 1-1, Hamarikyu-teien, Chuo-ku, Tokyo[MAP]
- 9:00-17:00 (Entry until 16:30)
- December 29th through January 1st
- General: 300 yen; seniors 65 and older: 150 yen; primary school and younger : free
- A 12-minute walk from Shinbashi Station (JR Yamanote Line, Tokyo Metro Ginza Line, Toei Subway Asakusa Line) to Otemon Gate’s entrance
- 03-3541-0200 (Japanese or English)
※Free admission on May 4th and October 1st every year to celebrate the park’s anniversary