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Kawagoe

Enjoy an Edo town feel not far from the big city

About Kawagoe
Photo: Shutterstock

Things to do in Kawagoe

Upcoming Kawagoe Events

Kawagoe Million Lights Summer Festival

Kawagoe Million Lights Summer Festival

Late Jul

Kawagoe Million Lights Summer Festival, a two day summer celebration, is the second largest annual festival in Kawagoe. Experience..

6 Free
Kumagaya Fireworks Festival

Kumagaya Fireworks Festival

Mid Aug

Kumagaya City will be staging its annual Kumagaya Fireworks Festival on Saturday, 10th August 2019 along the banks of the Arakawa..

5 Free

Saitama Top 10

Where to eat in Kawagoe

Vanitoy Bagel

Vanitoy Bagel

Todd Wojnowski

Vanitoy Bagel is a fantastic cafe and bagel shop in the "Old Town" neighborhood of Kawagoe, Saitama. The food, drinks and atmosphere..

Imotaro

Imotaro

Sherilyn Siy

A small shop selling sweet potato onigiri made with 100% pure sweet potato, no added sugar. Imotaro's sweet potatoes are s..

4

Latest Kawagoe Reports

Kawagoe with Kids

Kawagoe with Kids

Sherilyn Siy

Kawagoe may not be the first place you think of when you are planning a day out with the kids, but this quaint town that was c..

4
Kashiya Yokochō

Kashiya Yokochō

Sherilyn Siy

Kashiya Yokochō is an alley in Kawagoe known for sweets. Shops selling traditional and commercial candy and other treats can b..

6
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About Kawagoe

Kawagoe is quite famous in the Kanto area. Every year more than five million sightseers visit this small little Edo-style town, also known as “Little Edo” or “ko-edo” in Japanese. However, it's always worth visiting, as there is so much to see. Its main sightseeing spots are Kurazukuri Street with its clay-walled warehouse-style buildings from the Edo period, Kawagoe Castle and the grounds of the Kita-in Temple, where you’ll find the Toshogu Shrine and some remains of the original Edo Castle.

My house is located only ten minutes away by train, so I visit Kawagoe quite often. This summer I went with some former co-workers and we had a great time visiting different temples and take some pictures.

The Naka-in Temple for example, just south of the Kita-in temple grounds, was built by the great religious leader Jikaku-Daishi Ennin, during the Heian Period (794 to 1185). It is famous for its fantastic cherry blossoms trees right in front of the main building. There is also a little Japanese rock garden on the grounds.

We continued towards Kita-in, another interesting Buddhist temple. It is famous for its remains from the original Edo Castle and the statues of 540 wonderful rakan, small statues that represent the disciples of Buddha. It is said that Iemitsu, one of the first Tokugawa shoguns, took great influence to move some parts of the original Edo Castle from Tokyo, which had suffered severe damage during the Great Earthquake of 1923 and the second World War, to Kawagoe. When you step into this old building today, it gives you a great feeling of how the shoguns at the time were living. There are a reception rooms, a study, a kitchen, the original toilet and bathroom as well as the actual room where Iemitsu is believed to be born in.

Last but not least we went to Honmaru Goten, the main hall of Kawagoe Castle, which was still closed for repairs when I went the last time. Now it has reopened I highly recommend a visit to everyone who is in the area. It has been beautifully restored and there is lot of background information available.

Finally, we went to have lunch at the Japanese restaurant Sasagawa. I chose Shookadoo Bento (1,260 yen), including sashimi, cooked white fish, tempura and vegetables. By the way, Kawagoe is generally known also for its sweets, in particular anything that can be done with sweet potatoes. Have you tried them?

If you are in the area around the middle of October, the 3rd Saturday and Sunday of October to be precise, you should not miss the Kawagoe Matsuri.

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