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7 Wisteria Spots in and around Tokyo & Saitama

Spring flowers are on a roll in Japan! After the beloved Sakura season, we have tulips, azaleas, nemophila, and also Wisteria blooming! I've already written a guide on where to find tulips in Tokyo here. Azaleas are relatively easier to cultivate so you see them everywhere. Nemophila flowers are very much loved so the large well-known parks have already established themselves on being the go-to spots. That leaves us with Wisteria. 

Wisteria quick facts

  • They're part of the pea family, and they climb onto any available support 
  • Being fast growing means they require consistent grooming and requires a lot of upkeep 
  • The largest Wisteria tree is at Ashikaga Flower park which dates back to 1870 (150 years old) and it covers 1,990 square meters! 
Because they require so much support to cultivate, it's difficult to find nice Wisteria kept well where they have proper support to grow on a shelf-like structure. In Japanese this is called "Fuji-Dana" 藤棚, it means Wisteria shelf. If you happen to see wisteria in the wild or not groomed, you'll just find a lush, tall green and leafy tree with some purple dangling down on random spots. 

After a lot of research online and in books, I've narrowed down to these 7 spots. And since I've visited them personally, I can say that the bloom is beautiful and worth a trip there just to see it. 

୧ Tokyo  

1. 日枝神社 Hie Shrine (Akasaka)
Starting from the largest Wisteria display in city center, we have Hie Shrine. They have a few very healthy trees making a beautiful shelved-display. And you know the plants are healthy when they attract these large "carpenter bees". Walking under the Wisteria will give you will also notice a sweet fragrant which are in fact coming from the flowers. While you're there, don't forget to check out the long red tori-gate lined staircase (marked as "Thousand Toriis" on google maps, located on the west side)

⌲ Station: Kokkai-gijidomae or Tameike-Sanno

⌲ Hours: 6am - 5pm

⌲ Entry: ¥0

 
 

 

2. 檜町公園 Hinokicho Park (Tokyo Midtown/Roppongi)
Being an old feudal lord's garden, Hinokicho park is landscaped beautifully with a Japanese style pond and resting area. Right beside it is this small row of Wisteria flowers with benches underneath. I feel like this spot has a ton of potential since the flowers are just only beginning to bloom. I'd say check back around early May to see a fuller bloom! This spot also has a huge grass patch and a playground so it's a perfect spot to bring your little one for a picnic!  

⌲ Station: Roppongi 

⌲ Hours: 24/7

⌲ Entry: ¥0


 



3. 清澄公園 Kiyosumi Park (Kiyosumi Shirakawa Station)
This is another public park with a large grass area. A single Wisteria tree covers a long stretch of support pillars, underneath it many benches are available for you to sit and enjoy some snacks. This spot was particularly quiet considering it was right beside the station. 

I picked up this Tokyo Sanpo (stroll) guidebook at 7-11 and it happened to have very detailed maps marked with all kinds of flower icons. After scourging through 32 maps for the tiny wisteria icon, I found this spot, immediately went onto google maps to confirm the status of this spot, and went the very next day. I love it that old school methods like this can still lead to amazing hidden spots. 

⌲ Station: Kiyosumi-Shirakawa

⌲ Hours: 24/7

⌲ Entry: ¥0





4. 亀戸天神 Kameido Tenjin Shrine (Kinshicho)
East of city center, you'll find the iconic shrine in Tokyo for their Wisteria Festival. Kameido Tenjin Shrine not only has beautiful plums in February, their Wisteria covers almost the entire Shrine grounds. On top of that, you can see Tokyo Skytree in the distance. 

If you are a collector of Japanese Shrine items, you should also get their limited edition Wisteria Festival Goshuin (Shrine Seal). It comes with a beautiful post card too! 

Also I have to mention, I met some of the nicest elderly photographers at this location. There were 2 that took amazing photos of me and asked for my permission to post it on their accounts. There was another old man that told me this story about how the famous Tora-San of Shibamata has a movie scene in this exact location. 

⌲ Station: Kinshicho or Kameido

⌲ Hours: 6am - 5pm

⌲ Entry: ¥0


 

 

5. 国領神社 Kokuryo Shrine (Chofu, Tokyo)
From Shinjuku, hope on the Keio Limited Express train for 20min and you'll find yourself at Chofu station. From there it's a short 10min walk to Kokuryo Shrine. They have a single tree almost 500 years old, growing over a very tall and sturdy shelf support. 

They also have seasonal Goshuin with Wisteria printed on it, and they have beautiful varieties of Omamori (Special Wisteria edition is also available) 

⌲ Station: Chofu

⌲ Hours: 9am-4pm (Shrine office, you can enter Shrine grounds 24/7)

⌲ Entry: ¥0

 

 

୧ Saitama  

1. 久伊豆神社 Hisaizu Shrine (Koshigaya, Saitama)
Take a train 45min north from Ueno and you'll find yourself in Koshigaya. The Wisteria in this shrine is formed from a single tree and covering a huge area surrounding a lake. It's also relatively quiet, with the majority of the visitors being elderly residents of this area who are just there to sit, chat, and enjoy the flowers. While they don't have Wisteria specific Shrine items to buy, they have a wide selection of Omamori (Good Luck Charms), so make sure to visit their shrine office in the back to check them out. 

⌲ Station: Koshigaya or Kita-Koshigaya Station (20min walk from the station)

⌲ Hours: 5am - 6pm

⌲ Entry: ¥0


  

 

2. 牛島の藤 Ushijima no Fuji (Fujino-Ushijima Station, Saitama)
If you don't mind the travel time, and you want to see pink wisteria, then this is your spot! On top of that, this location has the most flowers out of this entire list. They have 2 very large trees covering tons of space and the flowers are all blooming very beautifully. It doesn't end here, they also have Nemophila in this small corner by the shop! Now that's a rare combination to see in one photo. 

⌲ Station: Fujino-Ushijima

⌲ Hours: 8am - 5pm (April 17 - May 5 only)

⌲ Entry: ¥1,000



 

I hope you are enjoying the beautiful weather and that this post helped you find your next weekend adventure! 

Never stop exploring!


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