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Kawagoe

KawagoeKawagoe mapKawagoe is a city located about 15 km west of Omiya in Saitama city.

In Edo Period (from the 17th to late 19th centuries), here was the central city of Kawagoe Domain, then here had prospered as a castle town.

Fortunately, this city escaped the damage of the World War II, so it still has many old streets and buildings.
Then, this city is often called "Koedo" ("Little Edo").

In March 2007, the Emperor and Empress guided the King and Princess of Sweden around this city.

The main area is located in a northerly direction of Kawagoe station (JR, Tobu Lines) and Hon-Kawagoe station (Seibu Line).
And it is nearly within about 1 km circuit.

You can make a tour of old town, not only on foot but also by route bus or rickshaw for sightseeing.

Koedo Kawagoe Tourist Association official website

Ichibangai street /1/

Ichibangai streetIt is the popular street, and many old buildings line on both side of the street.
The street is about 400 meters long, and stretches from Nakacho intersection located 0.7 km north of Hon-Kawagoe station to the north.
In 1893, Kawagoe city suffered the great fire. After that, rich marchants rebuilt their buildings with fireproof structure. They adopted the structure of traditional Japanese storehouse (In Japanese, "kura").
These buildings still are used as general shops and restaurants.
There is "Kura-zukuri Museum" introducing the structure of kura halfway on the street.

Toki no Kane (Time Bell Tower) /2/

Toki no Kane (Time Bell Tower)It is the 16-meter high bell tower, and is located just a little east of Ichibangai street.
The original tower was built in the early 17th century by the lord of Kawagoe castle, but current tower was rebuilt in 1894 after the great fire.
Now this bell is rung every day at 6, 12, 15 and 18 o'clock.

Kashiya Yokocho street /3/

Kashiya Yokocho streetIt is a small street located just a little west of Ichibangai street.
"Kashiya" means "confectioner", and there are a dozen shops selling traditional and cheap Japanese confectionery for children such as ame (candy), senbei (rice cracker).
Here is one of the popular spots in Kawagoe, beacause most adults also flash back to their childhood.

Honmaru Goten /4/

Honmaru Goten"Honmaru Goten" means "Palace in the center area of the castle".
Kawagoe Castle was built in 1457, but most buildings were demolished in the 1870s by Meiji government.
Honmaru Goten is built in 1848, and a part of it remains remains now.
It is located about 0.7 km east of Ichibangai street.
We can see the entrance, a great hall and a room for chief retainers.

Kawagoe City Museum /5/

Kawagoe City MuseumIt is a museum located just north of Honmaru Goten.
It introduces the history of Kawagoe city, festivals in Kawagoe and the structure about "kura".
Basically it is closed on Mondays.

Kitain temple /6/

Kitain templeIt is a Buddhist temple located 0.8 km south of Honmaru Goten.
It was founded in 830 by high priest En'nin.
Since the foundation of Edo government in the eatly 17th century, this temple had been given sanctury by Edo government.
So after this temple had been destroyed by fire in 1638, Iemitsu Tokugawa, the 3rd Shogun of Edo government, removed and rebuilt some buildings from Edo Castle in current Tokyo.
But Edo Castle had been destroyed by fire in 1657, so fortunately we can see the only original buildings of Edo Castle here now.

Toshogu shrine /7/

Toshogu shrineIt is a Shinto shrine located just south of Kitain temple.
Toshogu shrine in Nikko is very famous, but there are many shrines with the same name in Japan. They mostly had been built by Tokugawa family, which is the Shogun family in Edo Period.
In 1617, on the way to carry the remains of Ieyasu Tokugawa, the founder of Edo government, from Kunozan in Shizuoka Prefecture to Nikko, a Buddhist service was performed at Kitain temple.
So this shrine was built in 1633.

Scenic or Nature / Park or Garden / Resort / City, Town or Village / Quarter or Street /
Temple or Shrine / Museum or Laboratory / Market or Commercial facility / Factory /
Other Building or Construction / Historic place / Remains / World Heritage Site

How to get to here

By Railroad

  • By Seibu Line, about 45 minutes by limited express "Koedo", about 60 minutes by express, from Seibu-Shinjuku.
  • By JR Saikyo Line, about 52-55 minutes from Shinjuku.
  • By Tobu Tojo Line, about 30 minutes from Ikebukuro.
    Some trains run on this line from Yurakucho Line and Fukutoshin Line of Tokyo Metro (subway).



Ichibangai street
Ichibangai street
Kura-zukuri Museum in Ichibangai
Toki no Kane (Time Bell Tower)
Kashiya Yokocho
Kashiya Yokocho
Photo by © Y.Shimizu/© JNTO
Honmaru Goten
Kawagoe City Museum
Main Hall of Kitain temple
500 Rakan statues in Kitain temple
Jigendo in Kitain temple
Photo by Rettou-homotsukan
Shoromon gate in Kitain temple
Photo by Rettou-homotsukan
Main shrine of Toshogu
Photo by Rettou-homotsukan
Front shrine of Toshogu
Photo by Rettou-homotsukan

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