In Kawagoe, you can experience the traditional and pure Japan which you can’t see in Tokyo.
Kawagoe, known as Little Edo (Ko-Edo), is one of the very few places that retains a semblance of the Edo period. During the Edo period, Kawagoe was an important and strategic city that prospered as a supplier of commodities to Edo (nowadays Tokyo). Because of the close ties between the two cities, Kawagoe inherited many aspects of the Edo culture and architecture. As a result, Chuo-dori, the old main street of Kawagoe, serves today as a museum showing a building style of the past that has long disappeared in most modern cities of Japan. It is relatively close to central Tokyo, but it has many sights that will allow you a glimpse into the past and see what Tokyo used to look like during the Edo period.
During the tour, we will visit all the famous highlights of Kawagoe, the Kita-in Temple, the major temple of Kawagoe and its famous Gohyaku Rakan, 540 stone statues of the disciples of Buddha, each with different facial expression, followed by Kawagoe-jo Honmaru Goten, main ward and the only surviving building of the former Kawagoe Castle. Close by the Castle is Kawagoe City Museum that introduces visitors the history and the culture of Kawagoe. After the museum, we will continue to the main street, Chuo-dori and its old warehouses and the symbol of Kawagoe, Toki-no-kane, bell tower with a large bronze bell that is still rung 3 times a day. Just around the corner from Chuo-dori is Kashiya yokocho, the Candy Shop Lane, where you can try some traditional Japanese sweets.
*Please note that the Castle and the museum are closed on Mondays (or following day if Monday is a national holiday), but we can visit other famous temples and shrines (Naka-in, Hikawa jinja, Choki-in) of Kawagoe instead.