Tokyo Re-Discovery

Town for a Leisurely Walk

Oct 23 2015

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Sugamo: a town caters to the elderly

Shibuya and Harajuku? - Too youth-oriented!

Asakusa? - Too many people!

If you agree and opt for a leisurely walk in a relaxed environment, try Sugamo.


The Sugamo Jizo-dori Shopping Street near JR Sugamo station has been affectionately dubbed as "Old Ladies' Harajuku" where you can shop, eat and pray!

Not only grannies but everyone feel safe to walk about the neighbourhood as the street is closed to traffic from 3 to 6pm on weekdays and 12 to 6pm on weekends/ holidays.

Halfway down the street, you will find "Koganji temple" that is more widely known as "Togenuki Jizoson."

Most visit the temple for the "Arai Kannon (washing deity)" statue. If you have an ailment on your body, wash the same part of the deity's. It is believed that your pain will go away!


Note that there are often a long waiting line before the deity, especially on weekends!

In keeping with its title as "Old Ladies' Harajuku," stores on this 800 metres long shopping street proactively cater to the elderly. If you are not too fascinated with such clothing stores, don't worry! You can opt for Japanese-style confection stores and souvenir shops.

At the end of the shopping street, you will find an intersection.

Unlike many shrines guarded by a pair of stone-carved dogs, here at Koshinduka, a Shinto deity of Sarutahiko Okami is enshrined with monkeys.

"Saru" means monkey in Japanese. Three wise monkeys (see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil) are engraved at the bases of the guardian monkeys.


Are you ready to call it a day? Not until you check this place!

Keep walking straight ahead and you will soon arrive at Koshinzuka station on Toden Arakawa Line.

On its platform, there is a kanmi-dokoro (a traditional Japanese style cafe) called "Ippuku Tei."

You do not need to buy a ticket to enter the platform area of Toden streetcar line.


Isn't it quite an experience to enjoy sweets as you watch streetcars go by?

You can take Toden or walk all the way back to Sugamo station to get home.

Why not visit Sugamo for a leisurely walk?



Share if you are tired of regular tourist sites!



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Acquainted with high-end spots and products in Tokyo as he welcomes foreign guests all the time. Once he starts talking about traditional festivals, manners and urban legends, no one can stop!

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