Exploring Japan Our Slice of Tokyo

Going Beyond the Usual: Exploring Hikawadai

Every Thursday and Friday for the last two years, I go to Hikawadai in Nerima City to teach English in an after school center for Japanese kids. Nerima is located at the northwest edge of Tokyo. From our station, Nishi-Kasai, going there takes me about an hour by train to Iidabashi station and then take Yurakucho train going to Hikawadai station. And since that it already quite a long travel, I don’t spend much time before or after my classes. But as a travel enthusiast, I always wonder what can I see beyond my usual route.

Last week I needed to come a bit earlier to school for a meeting before the class starts. However there was more than an hour gap before my class so I took this as an opportunity for me to feed my curiosity. I started with the nearby shrine just across our school. From there I walked a little further to Johoku Chou Park. Going there, I got fascinated with the beautiful gardens in front of some private houses. Also, there were quite a number of small shops along the big road. Hikawadai is highly residential area – lots of single detached houses, small family restaurants, and shops.

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The torii of HIkawa Shrine
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Admiring the well-preserved Hikawa Shrine
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Inside the compounds of Hikawa Shrine
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An old-style Japanese house that welcomes me every Thursdays and Fridays
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Admiring the well-pruned trees inside a private garden on my way to Johoku Park
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Flowers blooming beautifully in front of a private house made my walk less tiring.
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Walking on a gloomy day in the serene roads of Hikawadai

Johoku Chou Park is considered as the largest sports park in Tokyo. It is also used as an evacuation area in case a disaster occurs especially earthquakes. After a few minutes of rest, I continued my walk back to school. But instead of taking the big road, I walked a little more to access the smaller inner roads. Unfortunately, I needed to head back to school because of my class.

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Johoku Chuo Park: largest sports park in Tokyo
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A brief rest at Johoku Park before I head back to school
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Taking the small roads on my way back to school; reminds me of Philippines.
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Kids enjoying the cloudy yet nice weather at the playgorund

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