General Public Viewing of the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace

Hiking Inside the Imperial Palace!

The Imperial Palace is the residence of Japan’s Emperor. Until the mid-19th century, it was located in Kyoto, but now it’s in the heart of Tokyo. The current Imperial Palace was once the massive Edo Castle, the stronghold of the Tokugawa shogunate until the mid-19th century. Excluding the area known as the Outer Garden, its grounds cover approximately 110 hectares.

The inner grounds of the Imperial Palace are not generally open to the public. For most tourists, the plaza known as “Nijubashi-mae”, near Tokyo Station, is the best spot for photos. However, the East Garden (“Higashi Gyoen”) of the palace is open to visitors.

The East Garden was where the main tower of the Edo Castle once stood. The tower was destroyed by fire in the mid-17th century. Now, only massive stone walls remain. From the garden, you can have a panoramic view of the surrounding skyscrapers. It’s an excellent spot for light hiking.

※ Due to measures against the spread of the novel coronavirus, some areas are closed, and the number of visitors is limited.

Basic Information

Location Tokyo’s Imperial Palace East Garden

Access to the “Kikyomon” meeting place:
About 10 minutes walk from Chiyoda Line Nijubashimae Station (Exit 6)
About 10 minutes walk from Mita Line Otemachi Station (Exit D2)
About 15 minutes walk from JR Tokyo Station (Marunouchi Central Exit)

Duration All year round

※Closed on:
・Sundays
・Mondays
・Holidays (If it’s on a Saturday, it will proceed)
・Afternoons from July 21st to August 31st
・Days from December 28th to January 4th of the following year
・Days when events or other circumstances preclude visiting

Tour Details On-the-day registration: 300 people per session →70 people (First come, first served, with a distribution of numbered tickets. Identification like a passport is required.)
Advance application: 200 people per session →50 people (However, up to 50 people per group)
Morning Distribution of tickets from 9:00 am, Reception starts from 9:30 am
Tour starts around 10:00 am
Tour ends around 11:15 am
Afternoon Distribution of tickets from 12:30 pm, Reception starts from 1:00 pm
Tour starts around 1:30 pm
Tour ends around 2:45 pm
Tour Type General Viewing
Eligibility People aged 18 and over. Minors below 18 need to be accompanied by an adult.
Pre-application Application page: https://sankan.kunaicho.go.jp/login?locale=en
URL https://sankan.kunaicho.go.jp/english/about/koukyo.html

GETYOURGUIDE:  Tokyo: Audio Guide Tour of Tokyo Imperial Palace

MAP

Guide Map of the Imperial Palace

Source: https://www.kunaicho.go.jp/e-about/shisetsu/higashigyoen-map.html

PHOTOS

Gate to the Imperial Palace East Garden

Imperial Palace East Garden (Tokyo)

Scenery of Imperial Palace East Garden

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