Japan’s four seasons give its scenery beautiful and distinct views all year round. We’ve all heard of spring as cherry blossom season, but autumn gives way to ‘koyo’, the tradition of autumn leaf viewing. The leaves of Japanese trees offer a particularly wide range of fiery hues, resulting in spectacular scenes during fall.

These are the some the most majestic views for autumn in Tokyo and the surrounding area

Best Places to See Fall Leaves in Tokyo

1. Yoyogi Park

Despite drawing large amounts of visitors in fall to see the leaves, Yoyogi Koen is massive enough to never feel overcrowded. The sprawling park stretches from Harajuku to Shibuya, making it easily accessible from both tourist hubs. The proximity also means that there’s a particularly casual vibe, as shoppers and other merry-makers take a quick break in nature away from the bustle of Tokyo life.

Nearest station: Harajuku or Meiji Jingu Mae

2. Rikugien

If you want more of a traditional feeling to your leaf appreciation, Tokyo also has a few Japanese style gardens to truly immerse you in the koyo experience and Rikugien is a popular example. This large park has plenty of romantic and photogenic features such as streams, bridges and even a teahouse where you can take a rest. It also has an illumination event so you can enjoy another side of the autumn colours, lit up after dark.

Nearest station: Komagome

3. Icho Namiki

Swerve parks altogether and just appreciate the colour that autumn can bring to the street. Impressive gingko trees line Icho Namiki (also known as Gingko Avenue), and explode into rich golden tones during fall.

Nearest station: Gaienmae or Aoyama-Itchome

4. Shinjuku Gyoen

One way to escape the crowds is to shell out a bit of money. It only costs a few hundred yen to enter the park but thanks to this, the park has a much quieter atmosphere, also helped along by an alcohol ban. You may see some rowdy autumn picnics in Yoyogi Park, but Shinjuku Gyoen is an oasis for those serious about appreciating autumn leaves in a contemplative manner.

Nearest station: Shinjuku Gyoen-mae

5. Meigetsuin Temple

Apart from traditional parks and gingko lined streets, another way to appreciate the colours is in the calm atmosphere of a Buddhist temple. Meigetsuin is in Kamakura, an easy daytrip from Tokyo on the coast of the neighbouring Kanagawa prefecture. The view from the round window is particularly famous and lends itself well to photography.

Nearest station: Kita-Kamakura (about an hour out of central Tokyo)

6. Mount Takao

Another excursion, this time for those who like their scenery mountainous. Views don’t get much grander than mountainsides brought to life in gorgeous fall colours. You can see scenery such as waterfalls, suspension bridges and even a monkey park. Hiking and koyo go hand-in-hand so get your walking boots on and take full advantage of glorious nature.

Nearest station: Takaosanguchi (about an hour out of central Tokyo, from there several routes can be taken to the mountain depending on hiking course)

By - Jess.