Japanese autumn is all about the autumn leaves. It is as if the fields and mountains are painted red and yellow, and the Japanese saying: kinshu, or autumn as beautiful as brocade, is perfectly fitting for such beautifully painted mountains.
Because the period can be enjoyed for longer than cherry blossoms, it is easy to make travel plans, which is great.
Here are some places that you can see the autumn leaves around the capital, while sightseeing around Tokyo.
Rikugien Garden, which is famous for the shidare cherry(a variety of cherry tree with drooping branches) tree blossoms being lit up in spring, is also lit up in the period of autumn leaves. You can imagine that the contrast of the autumn leaves against a clear blue sky would be beautiful, but the autumn leaves floating up into the night sky is fantastic, and has a charm of its own, completely different to that in day time. The 2015 light up is open from November 11th (Wednesday) to December 6th (Sunday).
#2 Koishikawa Korakuen Garden
Created in the Edo period by the Mito feudal lord as an Edo period clan garden, it is now a public park. With buildings lining up against one corner of the park, it has the appearance of an urban oasis. The garden’s main focus is a pond called “Kaiyushiki(circuit style) Tsukiyama fountain garden”, and all around Chinese influence can be felt, which is the park’s main characteristic. This park’s autumn leaves are beautiful too, and can be enjoyed from late November to early December.
#3 Shiba Park
Shiba Park has been recognized as Japan’s oldest park. Tokyo Tower can be seen nearby from the park, which makes this a perfect place for a photo spot. Momijidani is an artificial valley, but the trees are so big, time seems to flow by slowly, and one’s mind can be calm down. Spending a relaxing hour on one of the park’s benches is also recommended.
Mt. Takao has been a popular sacred mountain for shugendo(Japanese mountain asceticism-shamanism incorporating Shinto and Buddhist concepts) since ancient times, and now each year many tourists and mountain climbers come to visit there. It is even a popular mountain in Tokyo. There is also a cable car so even those who would prefer not to climb the mountain can freely visit. The beauty of the mountain can be enjoyed throughout all four seasons, but the beauty of the mountain range during the autumn leaves season is especially an astonishing sight. Just a stone’s throw away from the city center, Mt. Takao is a recommended spot where you can come and enjoy the clear air, and vivid contrast of red and yellow.