Having completed my work, I had a few hours free before heading back to the airport. Always a fan of local strolling, I decided to do exactly that and see what was what in the area around the hotel that I was staying in.
On the main intersection by Otorii Station in Tokyo's Ota City Ward stands a sign showing that a few minutes walk would lead to a couple of places of interest, including one Haginaka Park. Fair enough, let's see what this 'Haginaka Park' is like and so off I went.
Well, it didn't take long to arrive, no more than a few minutes, but when I did, a great big grin appeared on my face. I'm always on the lookout for family friendly areas and I had found one, the perfect children's park! Haginaka Park is a child's dream. What's more, it's free and filled with open spaces and a plethora of jungle gym equipment settings of all sizes.
Designed as a traffic rules park, the park's play areas are interspersed with 'roads' for the children to ride their bikes and scooters along. Real traffic lights are set up as well, helping the children learn all about basic road safety. Walking around the park, I felt obliged to help out the children and follow the rules myself...
The far side of the park features a couple of baseball fields and a swimming pool. The part I visited was filled with jungle gyms, standard play sets and so on. However, what really caught my eye was the Garakuta Junk park. Featuring real life train carriages, fire engines, pickup trucks, speedboats and even a miniaturised space shuttle jungle gym set, this part of the park was just fantastic and all of the children playing here were simply having a ball.
If you happen to be in the area with your kids, perhaps spending a night in one of the local hotels here before flying out, do stop by. The kids really will love it.