In a city where space is at a premium, this expansive park is a popular place for Tokyoites to rehearse, reconnect with nature and enjoy freedom of expression.
The atmosphere is joyous almost every day of the week in Yoyogi Park. In addition to offering the amenities of a typical park, including spaces for jogging, picnicking and dog walking, Yoyogi is the setting for numerous events and festivals. Tokyo’s small apartments and noise restrictions prevent many musicians and performers from practicing at home, so they come to Yoyogi Park instead. Listen to a joyous cacophony of violins and other instruments.
The northern part of the park is a verdant green space, where city-dwellers enjoy fresh air and let their dogs run free. This area also has a cycling center; rent a bike to explore the rest of the park. Many locals dress their pets in cute outfits, so watch for dogs wearing quirky ensembles. The park’s southern area has an event plaza and open-air stage, where festivities such as April’s Earth Day and May’s One Love Jamaica take place each year.
Yoyogi Park was the site of Japan’s first powered flight in 1910. It was later occupied by the U.S. Army during the 1940s. It was used as the Olympic Village for athletes of the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games and became a public park in 1967.
In the spring, Yoyogi Park is a popular spot to view cherry blossoms. Come in autumn to see the golden leaves of the park’s ginko trees. The park also hosts a popular flea market throughout the summer, which typically takes place on Sundays one or more times a month.
When the weather is fine you’ll see artists, musicians, cosplayers and amateur athletes practicing their crafts. Visit on Sunday, the most popular time. The spacious park is often used as a site for club meetings, rehearsals and practice sessions.
Yoyogi Park is a short walk away from Harajuku Station, next to the Meiji Shrine. Come to the park between dawn to dusk. Admission is free.