With its understated suburban charm, Setagaya City Ward is a trove of good quality open spaces. The most populated of Tokyo's central wards, the city's parks and gardens can be found dotted all over the ward and are decidedly family friendly. Here is an introduction to just some of the parks and gardens of Setagaya and how to reach them.
A beautiful place to enjoy the blooming plums between February to March, the five hundred plum blossom trees of Hanegi Park are an attraction in and of themselves. Also featuring children play areas, including a labyrinth, this local park is well looked after with nicely landscaped gardens and a calming ambience.
A 5-minute walk from Umegaoka Station on the Odakyu Odawara Line.
Bordered by the Nogawa and Tamagawa rivers in the city's southern area, the vast riverbanks of Hyogojima Park make it a lovely destination for the family. Along with its running water, bridges and green spaces, the park's beautiful sunset views are a prime attraction. The park is also home to numerous sports fields.
A 4-minute walk from Futako-Tamagawa Station on the Den-en-toshi or Oimachi lines.
Another huge expanse of green lawns, Kinuta Park is most famous for the number and variety of its cherry blossoms. The park is a fantastic area for picnicking whilst also being home to the Setagaya Art Museum. Active types will enjoy the cycling and walking track as well as the park's baseball and soccer fields.
A 10-minute walk from Yoga Station on the Den-en-toshi Line.
Almost hidden away from the rest of the city is Todoroki Garden. Part of the larger Todorokikeikoku Park which is home to the only ravine valley in central Tokyo, the garden is a literal haven of solitude. Its pond, stone lanterns, bridge and bamboo sentinel grove are about as charming as they come, making the garden a lovely spot to visit.
A 5-minute walk from Todoroki Station on the Tokyu Oimachi Line.