The Japan Imperial Palace in Tokyo is one of those places I have visited multiple times in Tokyo, I seem to keep going back to them!
While the palace itself isn’t really that interesting (ehm.. mainly because you don’t actually get to see it), the East gardens (imperial gardens Tokyo) are a definite must-visit if you get the chance.
Follow along for a photo series along with all of our personal tips.
IMPERIAL PALACE TOKYO JAPAN VISIT
HISTORY JAPAN IMPERIAL PALACE (KŌKYO)
The Tokyo Imperial Palace Japan is located on the former site of Edo Castle. This imperial castle Tokyo is a so-called ‘flatland castle’ that was built in 1457 by Ōta Dōkan.
The area of the Japan Royal Palace Tokyo is a large park surrounded by a moat and massive stone walls. You can get here in 10 minutes walking from Tokyo Station.
I have said this many times in my Tokyo articles about structures in the city, but again, in WWII the building of the Imperial Palace was destroyed and it was rebuilt in the same style later.
You can’t get into the inner grounds of the palace, although on January 2nd and December 23rd, you are able to enter the inner palace grounds and see members of the Imperial Family.
Of course, there are plenty of guided Tokyo imperial palace tours that take you around the palace grounds during the year, but I never did one as they are only in Japanese.
IMPERIAL PALACE EAST GARDENS (KŌKYO HIGASHI GYOEN)
The gardens of the Tokyo palace are open to the public. While none of the original buildings of the Edo Castle period remain, you can still see the moat, walls and entrance gates of that time, which are impressive as well.
On the palace grounds, you will find the Ninomaru Japanese garden, which is a great place to stroll around and find your inner ZEN, like you can see me doing below (back in 2008):
Admission Ticket (Entrance is free, though) to the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace
Let us know: Would you be interested to visit imperial palace Tokyo and the amazing gardens? We think you would!
PLAN YOUR IMPERIAL PALACE VISIT
Official Imperial Palace Guide = www.jnto.go.jp
How to See the Imperial Family on New Year’s Day: www.kunaicho.go.jp
The Imperial Household Agency (Japan Imperial Palace Tokyo Tours) = www.sankan.kunaicho.go.jp
Tokyo imperial palace opening hours: The palace is not open to the public, check the opening times for the gardens below!
Tokyo Imperial Palace East Gardens
How to get to Imperial Palace Tokyo
To enter the Imperial Palace gardens Tokyo, take the Otemon entrance (10-15 minute walk from Tokyo Station to Imperial Palace)
The Imperial Palace Tokyo Garden Opening Hours
The Tokyo imperial palace hours for the Garden vary from month to month. In general, they are open from 9AM to 5PM (mid April-August) or 9AM to 4PM (November-February), closed on Monday, Friday, New Year (28 Dec – 3 Jan)
Japan Palace Gardens Admission
The Tokyo imperial palace entrance fee is completely 0 Yen! We love free things! You will get a token that you have to return, so they know if there is anyone that’s still wandering about when they close the gates
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