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Shitamachi Museum in Ueno Park (Asakusa and Ueno Park tour on October 27 )

  • 2019.10.28

Tokyo Free Walking Tour appreciate your participation in our tours in Asakusa and Ueno Park on October 27. 25 guests kindly joined from Lithuania, Ireland, Israel, Canada, America, Columbia, Argentina, South Africa, Singapore, Malaysia and Pakistan. Weather was perfect conditions in the light of deepening autumn. We saw a number of the rugby fans and beautiful chrysanthemum display at Asakusa Sensoji Temple and the breathtaking performing arts at Ueno Park. I hope all of you enjoyed walking with us. Shitamachi( literally downtown) Museum is located on the shores of Shinobazu Pond in Ueno Park and dedicated to the traditional culture of the old environments and buildings. The museum reproduces the lifestyle of the common people in Tokyo in the Meiji, Taisho and Showa periods in 1900s. This museum was established about 40 years ago to pass down the culture of the good old days to the next generations. The 1923 Great Kanto Earthquake and WWⅡ devastated many towns in Tokyo and changed behavior of the people. However, postwar reconstruction process brought modernization and growth. On the other hand, good old culture of the town disappeared as time passed. 1st Floor re-creates the townscape in the 1910s to 1920s. The large […]

Tour Report of the East Garden of the Imperial Palace on Oct. 26; Rugby World Cup 2019 is ending with the final game on Nov. 2

  • 2019.10.28

With 16 guests from various countries; Argentina(2), Canada(2), Germany(2), Ireland(2), Israel(1), New Zealand(1), Philippines(4), US(2), we have held the tour to the East Garden of the Imperial Palace in 3 groups.  We appreciate all of the guests for choosing Tokyo Free Walking Tour among many other guided tours in Tokyo.  We hope your safe trips for the rest of your stay and back to your homes. Rugby World Cup is almost ending with the third place play off on Nov.1 and the final match on November 2.  For the enthusiastic fans, I am sure the series of games must have been very exciting.  Especially, now that Brave Blossoms (nick name of Japanese national team) went on to the best 8, the game should be the long-lasting memory for people in Japan.  Many people became bandwagon fans and they also enjoyed the games and were excited with Brave Blossoms’ maneuver and won their way to the finals. To tell you the truth, rugby football has not been a major sport compared with baseball and soccer in Japan.  But thanks to the Rugby World Cup and Brave Blossoms’ powerful attack and its results, now we have one more option of sports for […]

Tour Report of the East Garden of the Imperial Palace on Oct. 23; Emperor Naruhito enthroned in ancient ceremony

  • 2019.10.25

Thank you for joining our tour of the East Garden of the Imperial Palace on Oct. 23. We had 13 guests. They were from Australia (2), Israel (3), Italy (2), Portugal (1), U.K. (1) and U.S.A. (4). It was a sunny and warm day, in contrast to the previous day that was a rainy and chilly holiday for the ceremony of the Enthronement of His Majesty the Emperor. Our guests enjoyed walking and taking pictures of historic sites in the autumn garden. As Rugby World Cup semi-final matches are scheduled for this weekend, many foreign visitors have already arrived. Furthermore, we had 420 leaders and dignitaries from abroad to attend the Enthronement ceremony this week. In the Enthronement ceremony held at the imperial palace on Tuesday, Emperor Naruhito proclaimed from inside of the Takamikura (traditional canopied throne) that he has ascended the throne . (Photo from the website of Prime Minister’s Office) The Emperor, the Empress, imperial family members and courtiers wore traditional formal court robes and solemnly performed the historical ritual. This majestic enthronement ceremony has been held by the imperial court since at least 8th century. People from home and abroad must have been impressed by this historic […]

So many topics to share! on Oct.20, Meiji jingu-shrine Tour

  • 2019.10.23

Thank you very much for joining our tour this morning, We we’re so delighted to welcome 31 guests from India, Israel, U.S.A.,Argentina, Italy, Canada, Sweden, Germany, Brazil. First, the sky was cloudy at our meeting point, but soon the sun came out to say hi, and the walk under the sun was rather like a one in middle September. Unfortunately, we could not see the wedding ceremony in Shinto style this day, but instead of that, there were many events going on inside and outside the precinct this day. People seem to be really alive. Shi-chi-go-san(a tradition Japanese event to celebrate children’s growth at their age 3 and 5 and 7) , Omiya-mairi(to take their baby to a shrine after it’s first  month  to pray for his or her good future and health), Ceremony for the WAKA rewards(Excellent  Japanese  poems collected across the country to offer to  Emperor Meiji and Empress Shoken)  , Preparation for the Chrysanthemum Exhibition (from Oct.25-Nov.23), and so many visitors including Rugby fans. Therefore, we could enjoy and share many many kind of hot topics with our guests this day. So as the topics of the enthronement ceremony of the Imperor to be on the day […]

What was on Honmaru turf in the East Garden? Tour report on 19 October 2019

  • 2019.10.21

Many thanks to the guests who participated in this tour. On that day we escorted 42 guests from Philippines, Italy, Malaysia, Germany, Israel, Canada, Argentina, Mexico, Sweden, USA, India, Brazil, and Australia. We divided into 4 groups. It was a surprising big number of guests after one week absence. Last weekend our tours to the East Garden, Asakusa, and Ueno Park were cancelled due to the typhoon. Actually, the East Garden was closed. The typhoon left many damages to riverside residents by flooding. Death toll reached 80. It was a big disaster and very sad thing. Because of what happened, Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako were heartbroken by those who suffered from this disaster and requested to postpone the enthronement parade which was scheduled to be held on October 22. The parade will be held on November 10. Only the ceremony is to be held. So many foreign leaders and diplomats are visiting Japan to attend the ceremony. In the East Garden, on Honmaru turf ground, the building for another imperial ceremony Daijo-e, in which Emperor prays for rich harvest, scheduled to be held on November 14 and 15 is under construction. Honmaru has been closed for that reason. Interestingly enough, […]

Tour cancellation Notice-Asakusa and Ueno Park on October 13th

  • 2019.10.12

Following the cancellation of the tour at the East Gardens of the Imperial Place, this is to inform you that the Asakusa tours at 10am and 1pm and Ueno Park tour at 1:30pm on October 13th have been cancelled. This cancellation is due to the impact of the super typhoon No. 19 or Hagibis hitting Tokyo with violent winds and substantial rain. Although the typhoon will pass through Tokyo tomorrow (October 13th) am, the train services are expected to remain suspended for equipment inspections or substantially delayed. Under these circumstances it is difficult for us to ensure the satisfactory tours. We hope you will understand the situation and are looking forward to welcoming you at other occasions. (Tokyo Free Walking Tour)

【Tour Cancellation Notice】 Oct.12th (Sat.) East Gardens of the Imperial Palace

  • 2019.10.11

Please be noticed that regarding the predicted impact of Typhoon Hagibis on this weekend, our tour of Oct.12th (Sat.) to East Gardens of the Inperial Palace is going to be  canceled. In case that the coming  Oct.13th(Sun.) Asakusa tour  /Ueno Park tour needs irregular operation, we will post an updated  schedule on Saturday (the day before the  tourdate) at this corner. Thank you for your understanding  and we would continue to put our best effort in order to protect the health of our guests and guides. 【Addtional Information】 According to the Imperial House Hold Agency, the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace will be closed on Saturday. 12 Oct.(wholeday), in the morning(from 9 a.m. to noon) of Sunday.13 Oct., in the morning(from 9 a.m. to noon)  of Monday. 14 Oct. http://www.kunaicho.go.jp/eindex.html

JAPANESE SPIRIT IN DOLL THANKSGIVING :Meiji Shrine and Harajuku Tour on Oct. 6, 2019

  • 2019.10.07

Thank you for joining our tour to Meiji Shrine and Harajuku on Oct. 6th. We welcomed 30 guests in total from Canada, Israel, USA, Australia, Philippines, Spain, UK, Italy and Germany. We really appreciate that some guests participated following East Gardens of the Imperial Palace the previous day. We made 4 groups to have mutual communication between guests and guides. It was rainy and a little chilly, 27℃ (81℉). We needed temporary suspending our tour under a roof to avoid strong rains, but all guest was cooperative and patient. We could not operate tours without their warm cooperation and understanding. Thank you very much! A lot of dolls were displayed in the corridor as we entered the main hall of Meiji Shrine during the rain. This day was the annual Meiji Shrine Doll Thanksgiving Day. There is a custom in Japan that believes that dolls have souls and values them. So many people feel reluctant to just throw away old and broken dolls as garbage. Meiji Jingu shrines holds every autumn this event as a festival of gratitude and farewell for such dolls. It is believed that Japanese people had animistic spirits in the symbiosis with nature since ancient times. […]

Tour report of THE EAST GARDEN OF THE IMPERIAL PALACE on 2019.10.5

  • 2019.10.06

Thank you for joining one of TFWT tours visiting the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace on October 5th.   We welcomed 23 guests from USA(8), Israel(7), UK(2), Mexico(2), Philippine(2), Germany(1), Spain(1).   The day was extraordinary hot day even in October with the temperature over 30 deg C.   However, sun light becomes softer and humid comes to be milder than mid summer.  Some guests could fortunately encounter rainbow under bright sunlight at Wada-kura fountain park on the tour route.   Now, in the East Garden of Imperial Palace, several constructions are on going. As has been announced by previous post, the main one is the construction of “Daijo-kyu” in the wide open space locating at the center of East Garden. The same one was prepared at the timing of enthronement of former Emperor 31 year ago, but the construction site was entirely hidden at that time.  On the other hand, these are observable up to this tour day, fortunately.   It is said that this follows the idea of “tradition should be more open and close to public”, but the exact plan how it will be handled until the day, Nov.14th and 15th, is not officially announced until […]