Jiyugaoka in Tokyo: A Popular Town with Chic and Quiet Livable Streets
“Jiyugaoka” is a popular town that has constantly been ranking high as a town people wish to live in Tokyo. Fashionable streets and stores gather in a small area, and it is particularly popular to women as a safe and perfect place for a stroll and window shopping. This time we would like to introduce the charms of Jiyugaoka, a popular chic spot in Tokyo. Photo: flickr.com
Location of Jiyugaoka
Jiyugaoka is an area around the Jiyugaoka Station where Tokyu Toyoko Line intersects Tokyu Oimachi Line. It is located about 10 minutes away by train from Shibuya, and about 30 minutes away from Shinjuku.
Atmosphere of the Town
A wide variety of shops stand in the town from luxury grocery supermarkets, pastry shops operated by famous pastry chefs, stylish general stores, apparel shops to long-established stores or renowned stores patronized by local people.
It is a very charming town with a calm atmosphere that does not make you feel the hustle and bustle of a big city. A wide range of age groups enjoy shopping and stroll, from young couples with children, students to the elderly.
Now, let us introduce this town’s featured spots and appealing points.
1. “Marie Claire Dori “Street
It’s a fashionable street in a short distance from the station, lined with trees and benches. This street has stores of popular apparel brands, general stores, cafés, and you can see people spending leisurely time.
“Marie Clair Festival” is held each year in May on this street, and the street shows a surge of excitement with wagons out to the front of stores and live performance shows.
2. Sweets Forest
Jiyugaoka is well known as a town of sweets, and it has famous pastry shops, other well-established stores in addition to a theme park of sweets called “Sweets Forest”. At a distance of 5 minutes away on foot from the Jiyugaoka Station, the building has multiple pastry and candy shops in it, and you can enjoy various sweets there.
3. “Jiyugaoka Megami Matsuri” (Jiyugaoka Goddess Festival)
This is the biggest event in Jiyugaoka that has been held in early October every year since the 1970’s. On the day of the event vehicle traffic is blocked out of the station area and streets are freed for pedestrians. It has become a very popular event that gathers approximately 500,000 visitors domestically as well as internationally, with vendor stalls lined up and outdoor stages set up for live performances.
4. An Environmentally Conscious Town
When you walk in Jiyugaoka, you will see trees in various places of the town. It is not a surprise as this town has a reputation to have been carrying out environmentally conscious community planning under the banner of “Jiyugaoka Green Project”,
The town has the only green Coca Cola vending machine in the world, too! This vending machine is specially designed to have the machine’s roof covered by green sheet made of plant matters. It can suppress the rise of machine’s surface temperature and cut down the power consumption. Tokyo Coca Cola Bottling has approved and placed the machine in support of Jiyugaoka’s efforts to save and keep the green in the community.
Sesanges: Guides of Jiyugaoka
We have introduced a part of Jiyugaoka’s attractive features so far. As for other charms of Jiyugaoka that we could not introduce here, Sesanges will be glad to tell you. Sesanges is composed of Jiyugaoka guides that are students of Sanno University, whose campus is in Jiyugaoka. They guide visitors of Jiyugaoka around the town on Sundays and holidays. They give not only directions but also recommendations on stores and interesting spots to visit, so if you visit the town for the first time, we strongly suggest you to ask them about the town.
Although Jiyugaoka is in Tokyo, the hustle and bustle of Shibuya or Shinjuku is absent there. It is a perfect place for carefree window shopping or for enjoying a stroll through the town, including a break on a bench on the street. We highly recommend this town for people who would like leisurely sightseeing in Tokyo.
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