Tokyo Cultural Heritage Map

Let's take a stroll around Koishikawa and Zoshigaya course!
Koishikawa and Zoshigaya Course

A rolling land of Koishikawa and Zoshigaya area is formed by midsize and small rivers pouring into Kanda-gawa River and plateau.
Koishikawa area is known for temples associated with the Tokugawa Shogunate, and temple towns were developed around such temples, territories and roadside of “Kasuga-dori Street” and “Otowa-dori Street”. Tokugawa Tsunayoshi, the fifth shogun, specially had a close connection to the area. Zoshigaya Kishimojin Temple was worshipped by a wide range of believers and thrived in the Edo period.

This route introduces the historic sites such as Gokoku-ji Temple and Zoshigaya Kishimojin Temple that allow us to experience the atmosphere of the Edo period, as well as the Former McCaleb Residence and Jiyu Gakuen Myonichikan built in the Meiji and the Taisho era. While going up and down many slopes like Edoite, let’s discover historic charm of Koishikawa and Zoshigaya area and experience the topography of Tokyo.

Let's take a stroll around Koishikawa and Zoshigaya! (Bunkyo, Toshima)

Koishikawa is on the north bank of Kanda-gawa River in Bunkyo City and covers the area from the around of Iidabashi to Myogadani. Its north-east area is called Hakusan and the west is on Kohinata Plateau. Koishikawa Botanical Garden is located on the site of Hakusan Palace where TOKUGAWA Tsunayoshi, the fifth shogun, spent his life before becoming a shogun, and is around the boundary of Hakusan area. Kanda-gawa River from Iida-bahi Bridge to Asakusa-bashi Bridge served a function as a part of Moat of Edo Castle. Although the main residence of Mito Tokugawa Family was settled on the north of the river, this area was basically rural where it was far from Oshu-dochu Road and Nakasen-do Road on the east and the territories of temple and the residences of samurai scattered. The temple town was formed around the temples connected to the shogunate and these territories such as Dentsu-in Temple and Gokoku-ji Temle, and along the streets to those temples, like “Kasuga-dori Street” and “Otowa-dori Street”. Zoshigaya is the area covering the valley and plateau to the west of Gokoku-ji Temple.

The feature of this area is rolling land formed by midsize and small rivers pouring into Kanda-gawa River and the plateau. The central part of the Let’s take a stroll around Koishikawa and Zoshigaya ! west of vast Musashino Plateau lying between Ara-kawa River (Iruma-gawa River) and Tama-gawa River was inconvenient for water and the grove of Musashino extended on most area before building Tamagawa-josui Water Supply. However, a lot of midsize and small rivers of which source are spring water, such as Inogashira-ike Pond, are seen on the east part of the plateau around from the edge of wards. The rivers scrape the plateau and form the topography with a lot of slopes, complicated plateau and lowland. Kanda-gawa River, of which source is Inogashira-ike Pond, is the largest river on the north of Edo Castle and flows southward from around Sekiguchi (Edogawa-bashi) to Iida-bashi, is forked east and west into the canals of the Edo Period, and finally flows into Tokyo Bay.

On this walking route, we are starting from Koishikawa Botanical Garden to Kasuga-dori Street, passing by Gokoku-ji Temple, and going toward Zoshigaya and Ikebukuro. We can access to Koishikawa Botanical Garden by Hakusan Station and Myogadani Station on the subway, a little far, by Kasuga Station and Korakuen Station. From the end of this route, Jiyu Gakuen Myonichikan, we are going to leave for JR Mejiro Station or JR Ikebukuro Station. Of course, we can follow the opposite route.

This area is wholly urbanized at present, but you are going to go up and down frequently a lot of slops on this route. How about experiencing directly the topography of Tokyo and the old days of Koishikawa and Zoshigaya!

Column (Let’s walk about Koishikawa!)

Koishikawa Botanical Garden can be accessed from the three stations because of its extensive area. We recommend you to take the route from Myogadani Station to the front gate of Koishikawa Botanical Garden via Place of ISHIKAWA Takuboku’s Death. It is difficult to find where Place of ISHIKAWA Takuboku’s Death is located, but you should go south from Myogadani Station along Kasuga-dori Street, and head for Koishikawa Library from Takehaya Park. From the Place of ISHIKAWA Takuboku’s Death, going to Harima-zaka Slope and down the slope to the east, and then you will find the Botanical Garden.

The main gate is the only way into the Garden, but you can go out from the main gate and the gate at Main Building of the Former Tokyo Igakko (Koishikawa Annex of the University Museum, the University of Tokyo). Moving around the Garden and going out from the gate at Koishikawa Annex, you just arrive at Yutate-zaka Slope.

Going up the slope looking Akagane-goten Building on the left side, you arrive at Myogadani Station through Kasuga-dori Street. Turning right at the Kasuga-dori Street and passing the front of the Ochanomizu University, you go down to the left along Shinobazu-dori Street.

Passing Otsuka Senju-bosho Cemetery on the right, via Toshimagaoka Cemetery, you arrive at Gokoku-ji Temple.

The main hall of the temple is on the plateau, but this route is the easiest to walk, because you just need once to go up and down the slopes to Kasuga-dori Street.

Walking Course Highlights / bunkyo-ku

  1. Place of ISHIKAWA Takuboku’s Death
  2. Memorial to Ishikawa Takuboku Monument and Gallery

Walking Course Highlights / toshima-ku

  1. Kishimojin-do Hall, Zoshigaya
  2. Image of OMORI Hikoshichi;color on wooden board
  3. Image of San’nin Shizuka Shirabyoshi; color on wooden board

Route Map

Brochure (PDF)

Tokyo Cultural Heritage Map

Would you like to go around cultural heritages? In Tokyo, there are various cultural heritages. This map helps you go around cultural heritages with efficiency during limited time in your trip. Japanese traditional temples and shrines, the cultural heritages concerned to most famous events and person in Japan and a lot of nature. This map introduces all of them widely! You must watch them and know the history and the culture of Tokyo!


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