Another view of this unique temple in Ueno Park with its large octagonal temple hall. the temple is set on a island in shinabazu pond in the southern part of the park. Admission is free to this temple on of the few free attractions in Ueno parak.
The small scenic temple is set on an island on a lake in Ueno Park. The temple is dedicated to Benten, the goddess of good fortune and is particularly popular during cherry blossom time. Make sure not to miss this one.
Toshu gu Shrine is in a wooded area of the park. This is the entrance gate to the shrine built in 1616 and honoring the famous shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu. A small entrance fee is required to enter the shrine.
Main Shrine buildings of this shrine dedicated to Tokugawa Ieyasu, a famous shogun. The shrine is small but scenic and is one of many dedicated to to this shogun throughout the country with the largest with the remains of the shogun in Nikko.
The National Museum has a great collection of Japanese and other Asian artifacts. It consists of 5 buildings, the main building is dedicated to Japanese art and historical items, another to Asian art and one to Japanese archeological items looking at prehistory in japan. the other two buildings are used for special exhibits.
This building houses the archeological wing of the museum and was built in 1909 in a western style to commemorate the marriage of the Meji prince ( later emperor Taisho). it is open for special exhibits only.
Another view of this Temple on the north side of Ueno park near the National museum. it is right across the street from the park. It is a satellite of the famous Rinno Ji temple in Nikko though not near the scale worth a visit.
Garden area of Rinno-ji Temple. This temple in Ueno park is associated with the more famous and larger Rinno ji in Nikko. This temple is a small outpost in the capital city and was originally part of a larger temple complex.
A special treat for the little traveler: a trip to Ueno Zoo to see the pandas. It's not an amazing zoo (they never are) and animals probably wish they had more room to move about, but all in all it can be acceptable.
The little one was delighted (pandas, otters, lemurs...) - mum and dad were mostly impressed with the hokkaido bear.
Ueno Park, right across the street from Ueno Station, was constructed in 1873 during the Meiji period of Western-style development. The park sits on land that was once home to the Kan'ei-ji temple, destroyed in 1868 during the Boshin War. There are two historic strructures remaining from the temple: the five-storey pagoda (1639) and the Kiyomizu Kannondō (1631).
The park is home to several major museums and is famous for its 1200 cherry blossoms which bloom in April. Shinobazu Pond is full of lotus plants, birds and giant carp. Museums include the Tokyo National Museum (1872), National Museum of Nature and Science (1872), National Museum of Western Art (1959), Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum (1926),AND ***amachi Museum (1980). Schools in the park include the Japan Academy (1879), Tokyo School of Fine Arts (1889), and Tokyo School of Music (1890). Other facilities include the Imperial Library (established 1872 and opened in Ueno Park in 1906), theTokyo Bunka Kaikan opera and ballet house (1961), and the Ueno Zoo (1882)
Attracting 10 million visitors a year, this is Japan's most visited city park.
Another itinery which can easily occupy a whole day is a trip to Ueno Park and the nearby old Tokyo areas of Yanaka, Nippori and Nezu.
To reach Ueno Park take the train to Ueno Station.
Ueno Park contains Ueno Zoo which I have never visited, but I do know it has pandas. It also has Tosho-gu Shrine which is a life-sized replica of the main temple shrine of Nikko. On our first visit there a Noh play was being staged in the grounds. Free-entry and worth a look.
The park also contains several water-lily covered ponds - Shinobazu Ponds and this area has a small temple to the goddess Benten - goddess of good fortune.
At the top of the hill not far from the Ueno Station entrance to the park there is a statue of a mighty samurai warrior taking his little dog for a walk.
Near Ueno Station before you enter the park you will also find a wonderful street market selling everything and anything, including lots of colourful food stalls.
There are several museums including the Tokyo National Museum in this area.
If you exit the far end of the park, near the Tokyo National Museum, you can walk to the Yanaka, Nippori district. This area is the one of the few areas of Tokyo which survived the bombings of World War II. Wander aimlessly down winding lanes with traditional wooden houses and beautiful little temples set in idyllic Japanese Gardens. Or take a stroll through Yanaka Cemetery.
Nearby Nezu has a beautiful 300 year old shrine with a fantastic azalea gardens and pathways lined with bright red tori. The azaleas are at their peak around April/May
It's a large public park in central Tokyo, not the best but probably the one offering the most attractions (museums, zoo,temples..).
It's also one of the most famous and popular spot in Tokyo for cherry blossoms.
Near the southern entrance one can see an unusual statue of a samourai walking with his dog, Saigo Takamori a famous samourai who lived in the nineteenth century, his opposition to the Meiji government was the historical basis for the movie "The last samourai".