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Beyond Tokyo APRIL 2020

This month’s destination:

Let’s go see thousands of koi nobori fluttering over the river at Tatebayashi

Thousands of koi nobori fish flags at Tatebayashi

Here’s something you won’t see anywhere else in the world: over four thousand colorful fish flags swimming over a river, just an easy day trip from Tokyo!

Koi nobori fish flags over the river at Tatebayashi
The Tatebayashi koi nobori festival goes on for a nice long time – from late March to early May – so you have plenty of time to catch the fish
Thousands of koi nobori carp flags over the river at Tatebayashi
As you walk along the bank, they seem to multiply, fluttering in the breeze
Koi nobori carp flags over the river at Tatebayashi
The festival spans both cherry blossom season and azalea season, so if you come early, there will be trees dressed in clouds of pale pink lining the banks, and if you come later you’ll be cheered along by pillowy hedges of magenta azaleas
Thousands of koi nobori fish flags waving in the breeze over the river at Tatebayashi
From the middle of the bridge at the end, the reflections double the effect!
Thousands of big and small koi nobori carp flags at Tatebayashi
And as you cross to the other side to walk back, you can get a closer look at the really big ones, made by local schoolchildren
Thousands of big and small koi nobori carp flags at Tatebayashi
Walking back, it’s hard to imagine a cheerier sight, and it always delivers fantastic photos, even if crowded

Open: March 25 – May 10 (2020)

Hours: Never closed

Admission: Free

For additional up-to-date information, visit the Gunma Prefecture visitor’s website in English

Here’s where Tatebayashi is:

Tatebayashi map

Here’s how to get to Tatebayashi Station from Kita-senju Station:

Train route from Kita-senju Station in Tokyo to Tatebayashi Station for koi nobori fish flags

To find the easiest way to get to Kita-senju Station from where you are by train/subway, I’d use the Japan Navigation phone app. Here’s where to get the app and how to use it, and here’s how to buy and use a Japanese transit card.

Here’s how to get to Tatebayashi Station from Kita-senju Station:

Here’s a map, showing how to get to where the koi nobori are, from Tatebayashi Station:

Map of route from Tatebayashi Station to where the koi nobori fish flags are
It’s a pleasant 20-minute walk from the station (with no hills) or a quick taxi ride

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Jonelle Patrick writes mystery novels set in Tokyo, and blogs at Only In Japan and The Tokyo Guide I Wish I’d Had

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2020, April

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