Meiji Shrine and Harajuku


Meiji Jingu & Harajuku : Tour report on January 5

  • 2020.01.06

  Dear TFWT tour guests and website viewers, Happy New Year! For you, who stayed in Japan over the years, hope you encountered and enjoyed various kinds of seasonal Japan unique events, decorations, dishes and traditions. We also met lots of new year special during the tour on January 5, the first Meiji Jingu Shrine & Harajuku route tour of the year. We welcomed 9 guests from Australia, Ireland, Singapore & USA. It was a lovely sunny day which looks like promise our happiness of the year. Thank YOU very much for your joining to our tour!   As the benefit of relatively small number of guests, we could offer semi-private tour for our guests and could customize the contents at some extent. Meiji Jingu Shrine, one of the most known and popular Shinto shrine in Japan, will celebrate its 100th anniversary this year, just in time for Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. Lots of ceremonies, events & exhibitions are schedule throughout the year. Please add Meiji Jingu Shrine to your “must-visit” list.   Before closing this tour report, let me share you one of the seasonal Japanese traditional custom scheduled on January 7, tomorrow, which is called “Nanakusa-gayu or rice […]


  • 2019.12.16

Thank you for all our guests who joined “December 15th Meiji shrine & Harajuku tour”. We welcomed 5 guests from Bulgaria, UK, and USA.   It was so quite in the Meiji shrine.  We heard unique footsteps on the “TAMAJARI” or beautiful gravel. We had a great chance to see a wedding couple in the shrine. The bride in the traditional white Kimono was so graceful. The families with celebrated children looked so happy. Can you imagine the precincts of this shrine will be filled with people during the new year, and it may take more than 2 hours to get to the pray area from the entrance? We are always looking forward to seeing you on TFWT tour. For more imformation about our tour, please visit our website, Facebook and TripAdvisor ! (reported by Keiko N.)

Tour Report on Dec. 1th at the Meiji shrine and Harajuku

  • 2019.12.02

Thank you for your joining our tour today.We welcomed 8 guests from many foreign countries, such as CANADA, COLUMBIA, BELGIUM, MALAYSIA. Today in Tokyo the weather was moderate, so 8 guests could enjoy this walking tour.   Here in the Meiji shrine seasonal special events such as 7.5.3 event, chrysanthemum show, flower arrangement show, ancient martial arts events, finished. Now in the  Meiji shrine  quiet atmosphere returned.   By the way I want to review autumn events this year.   In this autumn events I want to focus on ‘yabusame.’ I introduce you yabusame, an archery on horseback performance. This is a courageous performance. A player on horseback aims at 3 targets lined in a row by shooting the bow and arrows from a horse running at the top speed. The target is square wooden board, size is 50 cms. Targets are placed on the left hand side of running direction. “Wow! A horse is running so fast. An archer hit the target. Great! I was so impressed with the combination of the high skill between an archer and a horse.”   Yabusame started in Heian period and it became popular in Kamakura period as samurai worriers’ military exercise. This culture has […]

Shichi-Go-San, chrysanthemum and wedding at Meiji Shrine (November 17)

  • 2019.11.18

On behalf of our guides I just wanted to send a quick report to say thank you for coming along to our tour to Meiji Shrine and Harajuku on November 17. We welcomed 13 people from America, Mexico, Peru, Switzerland, Israel and Australia. I hope all of you enjoyed yourselves in the absolutely wonderful weather. We were fascinated by the cute children in pretty dresses of Shichi-Go-San celebration at the ages of three-and seven-year-old girls and five-year-old boys. The display of the beautiful chrysanthemum flowers was to celebrate the autumn festival of the shrine.Those flowers were dedicaded by the chrysanthemum groups. Luckily, we could see the processions of wedding ceremonies. Now it’s the peak of the wedding season and 17 couples got married at Meiji Shrine on that day. A new couple married every half an hour! I really appreciate everyone who joined our tour and shared with us an interesting conversation. Please tell your family and friends about us and if you come back to Tokyo, by any chance, come to another one of our tours! Once again thank you very much. (Posted by Yoshi)

Tour report on Autumn Grand Festival, Culture Day and Meiji Emperor’s birthday, 3 November 2019

  • 2019.11.04

Many thanks to 6 guests participating in the tour to Meiji Jingu shrine and Harajuku town on this day. Our guests came from Switzerland, Singapore and Australia. We divided into 3 groups. The weather was mild but partly cloudy. That day was a national holiday, called Culture Day since 1946 as a proclamation day of current Japan’s constitution. The current constitution ensures that all people have basic needs in life and enjoy healthy and cultural life, so culture is a key element in Japan’s modern life. But that day had been a national holiday even before 1946, as Meiji Emperor’s birthday. Meiji Jingu Shrine is where Meiji Emperor who reigned over Japan between 1868 and 1912, is enshrined as a god. At the Meiji Jingu Shrine, there held an annual event, called Autumn Grand Festival to worship the late Emperor. Imperial messengers came and showed procession wearing old time costume that attracted many tourists. Then visitors could enjoy exhibition of chrysanthemums, Ikebana (traditional flower arrangement), Japanese drum and flute performance, and etc. This suits the purpose of Culture Day, on which Meiji Emperor placed importance. Meiji Emperor not only respects tradition but also foreign cultures to modernize Japan. That aspect […]

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 […]

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 for Meji Shrine and Harajuku on September 15th

  • 2019.09.16

Thank you for joining our Tokyo Free Walking Tour at Meiji Shrine and Harajuku on September 15th. We had guests from various countries such as Australia, US, India, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Singapore, Pakistan, and Germany. As always, we shared good atmosphere in a quiet forest and historical objects in Meiji Shrine. At this time of year, we have a lot of Typoon, but fortunately the weather was good, and temperature was just comfortable. This good condition is also good for a bride and groom who just started their new life from Meiji Shrine. Congratulations to the young couple! Just one block away from busy TAKESHITA street, there is a small facility called Ota Memorial Museum of Art, which has specialty in UKIYOE wood block print. It is amazing that such a quiet and pretty museum showing traditional Japanese art is located in the center of pop culture. The museum holds themed exhibition from time to time. You can obtain good knowledge of UKIYOE from a special angle in such exhibitions. This week’s exhibition is all about Utagawa Toyokuni who had his work in late 18th to early 19th century. If you are interested in UKIYOE, it’s surely worth while spending […]

Wall paintings and lunch at Cat Street in Ura Harajuku (September 1)

  • 2019.09.02

Thank you for choosing our tour among the many candidates in Meiji Shrine and Harajuku area on September 1. 12 guests kindly joined our tour from America, Britain, Ireland, France. Bosnia-Herzegovina and Sudan. I hope all of you enjoyed walking with us in spite of muggy weather. Cat Street is a 1 kilometer-road between Harajuku and Shibuya, and crosses Omote Sando Avenue in the middle. The street is almost straight consisting of south part (Shibuya) and north part (toward Shinjuku) going deeper into Harajuku (“Ura Harajuku”). The narrow road seems to originate from many homeless cats basking in the sun in the old days. You may not be able to see them now. In fact, this road was made over the river prior to the Tokyo Olympic Games in 1964. Cat Street is one of the hot spots in Harajuku. There are a number of trendy shops and cafes including vintage clothing stores. However, it has much less teenagers in cosplay like Takeshita Street. People show more adult fashion. Since there is not that much traffic, it is an ideal place to go for a walk with your friends or family. In addition, you will see many outstanding mural arts […]

Tour Report: Meiji Shrine & Harajuku Tour on August 18, 2019

  • 2019.08.18

Thank you so much for joining our tour at Meiji Shrine & Harajuku Tour!  Even it was over 35℃, murderous heat in the morning, we welcomed 10 guests from the US, Italy, Columbia, and Spain. Meiji Shrine is one of the mecca of wedding.  If you are lucky, you can see the ceremony at the main hall. After 1 hour walking in the shrine, we headed to Harajuku area, where was the famous shopping area for young people.  There were so many teenagers enjoying shopping and eating out.  Some of the guest also enjoyed taking pictures at the famous instagram point! We have another four tours in this month, so please check our tour calendar.  We all hope you enjoy your days in Japan, and look forward to meeting you someday! (posted by Hisako)

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