Trainspotting In and Around Asukayama Park


My baby Kaiju has now become a chibi tetsu (チビ鉄 | mini rail fan) and most of our Tokyo outing revolve around places where she can get her train fix. Our latest adventure took us for some trainspotting in and around Asukayama Park in Kita Ward.

Asukayama Park


Asukayama Park is one of Japan’s oldest parks, going back to the Meiji era (late 19th century).
It’s a pretty good spot for doing hanami but it’s perhaps better known as a sanctuary for railfans.

The park is elevated and overlooks a section of the Tohoki/Akita/Hokkaido Shinkansen route.

Sit on one of the benches or walk along the path for endless views of all the trains heading to and leaving Tokyo Station.


As if that isn’t enough, the kids’ play area has an steam locomotive and a Toden Arakawa Tram car that kids can play in.

 

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It’s worth bringing your own toys for the large sandbox, but there’s a vendor nearby selling bubbles, toys, balls, and other park playtime essentials.


 
To the right of the restaurant and sandwiched next to the toilets are large tables where you can rest while watching Shinkansen go by.



After playing, it’s time to check out more trains.
Inside the park is a FREE cable car for easy access to the ground level and to Oji Station.

 

Oji Station


Below Asukayama Park is JR Oji Station. Only the Keihin Tohoku and Tokaido trains stop at Oji Station but stick around and you’ll see plenty of freight trains.
Definitely take the stairs on the way down to Oji Station for an incredible view of trains

From Oji Station we boarded the Tokyo Sakura Tram all the way to Otsuka Station.

Tokyo Sakura Tram

 

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While little Kaiju got her train fix, I wanted to ride the Tokyo Sakura Tram as roses were in bloom for the biannual Otsuka Rose Festival. The roses bloom in May-June and again in October-November.

I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again: it’s so unfortunate that the public voted to change the tram line with anything sakura when the roses have a much stronger impact. Not everything  in Japan needs to be related to sakura. Plus the roses bloom twice a year, and for a longer period of time.

Otsuka Station

We previously visited Otsuka Station and nearby Sugamo in April for sakura and trainspotting
Our trainspotting adventure ended at Otsuka Station for more roses. (Not before breaking in my new Starbucks Frappuccino tumbler, though!). 

The square at the South Exit of Otsuka Station

 
Roses line the path leading to the Station

 

Afterwards, we hopped on the Yamanote Line and took a very scenic ride to Tokyo Station to check out Shinkansen for another successful trainspotting adventure!

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