Have you ever heard of the Tokyo neighbourhood, Tachikawa? Are you thinking about visiting this unique area of Tokyo or even staying in Tachikawa, and wondering what are some things to do, places to visit and restaurants to check out?
There are so many neighbourhoods and areas in Tokyo. Besides the famous towns like Shinjuku, Shibuya and Harajuku, there are many incredible places and spots in Tokyo that are worth a visit. If you’re looking to visit a local neighbourhood and check out some hidden gems, Tachikawa might be a great place to check out. In this Tachikawa area guide, let’s have a look at what to do in Tachikawa, where to eat and drink in Tachikawa, where to stay in Tachikawa and some hidden gems in the area.
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What is Tachikawa?
Tachikawa City is a local area in west Tokyo. It is full of shopping and sightseeing, with large commercial facilities, parks rich in nature and historical sights. Tachikawa is the gateway to the town and you can access this area with multiple train lines as well as the Tama Monorail. There is also a full range of bus routes that connect the surrounding cities. If you use the JR Chuo Main Line, you can access it from Shinjuku Station with just one line, so it is great for many people to come and visit.
If you walk a little from the central city area of Tachikawa, you can see the vast greenery of Showa Kinen Park and multiple rivers flowing around the city. Tachikawa is convenient and lively, offering a comfortable living environment for its residents.
Things to do in Tachikawa
Showa Kinen Park
A national park full of greenery with a large site equivalent to 39 Tokyo Domes. In addition to enjoying the seasonal flowers in a large panorama, you can also enjoy barbecue, cycling, and boating, and in the summer, you can enjoy the largest pool in the metropolitan area.
Showa Kinen Park is a national park located across Tachikawa and Akishima. You can enjoy various beautiful flowers in the park, which boasts a scale of about 35 Tokyo Domes.
One of the features is that you can see seasonal flowers regardless of the season, such as cherry blossoms, camellias, daffodils, tulips in spring, hydrangea and sunflowers in summer, cosmos in autumn, and southern ka in winter. Seasonal events such as fireworks festivals in the summer and illuminations in the winter are held.
Since the park is quite big, you can enjoy renting a bicycle to get around or riding their park train to get around the park. Both of them are offered at a reasonable price for visitors. You can also ride a low boat or cycle boat at Waterfowl Pond. For families, there are areas where children can move their bodies as much as they want, such as Children’s Playground and Children’s Forest.
Although there is a free area and a paid area of the park, nearly all of the park’s area falls under the paid area. You can buy an admission ticket at various entrances of the park.
Showa Kinen Park entrance
- Adult: 450yen
- Elderlies (over 65 years old): 210yen
- Junior high school and under: Free
Free admission on these days
- 4/29 (Sunday / Holiday) National Holiday (Showa Day)
- 5/20 (Sun) Spring Urban Greening Promotion Campaign
- Free for visitors after 18:00 on 7/28 (Sat.) * In case of rain, the next day
- 9/17 (Mon./holiday) National holiday (Respect for the Aged Day) * Free for people aged 65 and over
- October 21 (Sun) Autumn Urban Greening Month
- 10/28 (Sun) Autumn Urban Greening Month
- Adults (15 years old and over): 3 hours: 420 yen (70 yen every 30 minutes)
- 1-day ticket: 530 yen
- Children (junior high school students and younger) 3 hours: 260 yen (30 yen every 30 minutes), 1-day ticket: 320 yen
- One ride- Adult (15 years old and over): 310yen, Children (4 years old and over, junior high school students and under): 160 yen
- One-day pass ticket (all-you-can-ride for one day)- 4 years old and over: 520 yen
- Silver pass ticket (elderlies over 65 years old): 400 yen
Tama Zoological Park
The zoo is divided into four zones: Asia, Africa, Australia and insects. The insect garden where many butterflies dance is popular. The orangutan skywalk is also popular (cancelled in winter and rain).
The Emperor Showa Memorial Museum
The Emperor Showa Memorial Museum was set up as part of the Showa Emperor’s 50th anniversary as a commemorative project. It is built in the Hanamidori Cultural Centre of the Showa Kinen Park. There are exhibits that relate to the Showa Emperor. Their aim is to be able to show people what life was like back in the Showa era as well as the 87year long life of Emperor Showa. When there is an upcoming anniversary, the museum always hosts special exhibitions so be sure to check their website to see if there are any during your visit to Tachikawa!
- Adult: 510yen
- University & High school students: 300yen
- Elementary & Junior high school: 100yen
- Elderlies (over 65 years old): 410yen
Opening hours March 1st-October 31st 9: 30-17: 00
From November 1st to the end of February 9: 30-16: 30
* Admission is 30 minutes before closing time.
Closed: Monday & Friday (If Monday or Friday is a holiday, the weekday immediately after is closed)
Set ticket for Showa Kinen Park and the Emperor Showa Memorial Museum
- Adult: 760yen
- University & High school students: 630yen
- Elementary & Junior high school: 100円 (only fee at the Emperor Showa Memorial Museum)
- Elderlies (over 65 years old): 520円
The popular furniture chain “IKEA” originated in Sweden, where you can easily purchase Scandinavian interiors. About a 12-minute walk from “Tachikawa Station” on the JR Chuo Main Line, “IKEA Tachikawa” is IKEA’s first store in Tokyo. It is easily accessible from major areas in Tokyo and is the largest in Tokyo.
The spacious store is lined with furniture, miscellaneous goods, and textiles that give you a taste of authentic Sweden. Just looking at the interior along the route should make you excited.
There is also a restaurant inside the restaurant where you can enjoy traditional Scandinavian cuisine, which is perfect for lunch. There is also a drink bar with coffee, tea and juice, which can be enjoyed by adults and children alike. If you are a family member, you can use the drink bar for free!
“Ramen Square” opened in 2005 in the commercial building “Arearea2” directly connected to “Tachikawa Station”. The facility is based on the concept of the cityscape of Manhattan, USA, and is lined with popular ramen shops carefully selected from all over the country, where you can enjoy eating and comparing exquisite ramen from all over the country.
Currently, there are eight stores, “Asayo” in Hokkaido, “Menya Gosei” in Niigata, “Menya Kokoro” in Tokyo, “Toriton” in Kyushu, and “Gokujoe” in Wakayama. There are various types of ramen such as lightly flavoured soy sauce ramen, rich tonkotsu ramen, and Taiwan mazesoba, so the point is that you can enjoy it with people who have different tastes for ramen.
In addition to irregular store changes, seasonal ramen may appear, so it is recommended to check the menu you want to eat in advance before visiting.
LaLaport Tachikawa Tachihi
Lalaport Tachikawa Tachihi is a shopping mall directly connected to the Tama Monorail “Tachihi Station”. From JR “Tachikawa Station”, you can change trains from the Tama Monorail “Tachikawa-Kita Station”, but it is a popular spot that can be reached on foot in about 23 minutes.
The three-story building is lined with various stores such as apparel fashion, interior goods, outdoor goods and kids’ goods. There is a food court “sora PICNIC” on the 3rd floor, where you can enjoy popular gourmet food while looking out at the monorail and Mt. Fuji from the large windows.
In addition, on the 2nd floor, there is an event plaza with fluffy artificial turf and “Gorion Park” where you can enjoy playing equipment of gorillas and lions, and children can move their bodies in an open space. There is also a “pop jet” in the event plaza where a fountain comes out according to the light and sound, so it is recommended to enjoy playing in the water in the summer!
Polar Science Museum
At the “Antarctic and Arctic Science Museum” operated by the National Institute of Polar Research, you can see and experience various exhibits related to Antarctica and the Arctic.
The exhibits are the observation equipment and specimens actually used in the Antarctic Research Expedition. The snowmobile that ran a round trip distance of 5,200 km to the Antarctic point in 1968 is exhibited almost as it was at that time, and you can feel the state of the Antarctic observation at that time realistically.
At the “TACHIHI Aurora Theater”, you can enjoy the images of the aurora observed in Antarctica and the Arctic on the all-sky dome screen with a diameter of 4 m, and also watch the images of the observation base “Showa Station” on East Ongul Island in the Antarctic area live. At “Syowa Station”, you can watch the images of the aurora in Antarctica in real-time! Adults and children should be excited about the mysterious images that cannot be seen in Japan.
The building was designed as a place to create a new lifestyle unique to this area while balancing the bustle of JR Tachikawa Station with the lush nature of the Showa Kinen Park area. Local “Tama wood” is used for the ceiling of about 5,000 squared metres of commercial facilities. By using local Tama products, the goal is to support the healthy maintenance and circulation of forests in the Tama area.
Green Springs is a new district that opened on April 10, 2020. This district includes nine buildings including the multipurpose hall Tachikawa Stage Garden, Sorano Hotel and different shops and store areas.
TACHIKAWA STAGE GARDEN だんだんテラス
Tachikawa Stage Garden is the biggest multi-purpose hall in all of Tachikawa. It has 2,500 seats and can hold up to 3,000 people when standing. This hall can be used for private uses or to host different events. The goal of Tachikawa Stage Garden is to become the most open theatre in Japan, different to the traditional closed theatre. It aims to bring people in the city together and create a space where people can meet and create unforgettable memories.
Genbuzan Fusaiji Temple
The temple was said to have been founded in 1353 during the Bunwa era. It is one of the most famous temples in the Rinsai sector. During the Meji era, a royal villa was set up in the temple and the imperial family visited the Fusaiji Temple often. However, in 1995 the temple was arsoned and most of the temple was burned down. As a result, a ‘Fusaiji Temple Reconstruction Committee was created and now we are left with how the temple stands today. There are annual events that take place at this temple, there is a timetable on the website so if you are in the area be sure to check out if there are any special occasions!
PLAY! Is an art museum with the motto, ‘Everyone from adults to children can enjoy.’ There are two main annual exhibitions each year as well as a ‘special exhibition’ which features artists and special themes from cool and unique perspectives. It is a cool experience that is highly recommended to visit to step into a world of wonderful art.
As well as the museum PLAY! Is home to a readymade playground with lots of quirky equipment and toys. The theme is ‘Encountering the Unknown.’ The creators of this playground try to make the equipment ambiguous, with no instructions on how to use or play with the equipment the children get to use their imagination freely and use their initiative. There are 7 different zones such as ‘kitchen’ and ‘gallery’ where they hold unique programs where children can learn about food and sounds in fun interactive ways.
Suwa Shrine 諏訪神社
Located about a 10-minute walk from “Tachikawa Station”, Suwa Shrine is a shrine with a history of 1200 years, which is said to have been built at the current location by Emperor Saga during the Heian period.
It is a shrine enshrined in Suwa Taisha Shrine in Nagano, and enshrines Takeminakata God. Takeminakata God is a god of hunting and farming that appears in Kojiki and is popular because it is said to have benefits such as prosperous business and prayer for victory.
There are different events happening here throughout the year, such as the Year-end Festival on New Year’s Day, the Kokukokusai in February, the Grand Festival in August, and the Autumn Festival in September.
The festival held in late August is especially famous when lion dances and sumo wrestling take place in Suwa Shrine. The lion Dance of Suwa Shrine is an intangible folk cultural property of Tachikawa City. The lion dance is dedicated to praying for a good harvest and the safety of the hometown before the autumn harvest. The origin of the lion dance is said to be the Genroku era, and it has a tradition of about 300 years. This dance has been passed down through generations. In 1963, the “Suwa Shrine Lion Dance Preservation Society” was established to preserve and inherit the lion dance.
In the shrine, you will find lion dance heads and they have been designated as an “intangible folk cultural property” in Tachikawa City. These are two male lion heads and one female lion head and they were produced around Genroku. It was used in the lion dance that has been handed down in Shibasaki-cho and Fujimi-cho.
Azusami Tenjinja is a shrine nicknamed “Cat Return Shrine”. The nickname “Cat Return Shrine” seems to have taken root from the episode when the cat of world-famous jazz pianist Yosuke Yamashita went missing, he made a request at this shrine and came back the next day.
At the “Kokagejinja” shrine in the precincts, cats are considered to be the guardian deities, and it is also known as a shrine that many cat lovers visit to pray for the safety and health of their cats. In addition to the cute stone statue of a cat “Tadaima Neko” installed in the precincts, there is also a “cat votive tablet” depicting the appearance of a cat. It is said that your wish will come true if you stroke the cat’s head or hang a votive tablet. If you have a cat, this is a must-visit spot.
“Kawagoe-do Ryokuchi Kominkaen” is a facility where you can visit the old folk house “Kobayashi Family Residence” designated as “Tachikawa City Cultural Property”. In a private house with a thatched roof built at the end of the Edo period, the hearth is cooked with fire every day, and you can still feel the life and taste of that time.
The main building is a “six-room type” consisting of six rooms except for the dirt floor and is characterized by high technology and excellent materials. In particular, the “Oku no Ma” located in the northwest is equipped with a tokonoma, a different shelf, a shoin, etc., which are as high as the samurai houses of the time.
In addition, the surrounding area is surrounded by nature such as cherry blossom trees, so it is also attractive to forget the hustle and bustle of the city and spend a quiet time. Why don’t you enjoy a nostalgic time that reminds you of the life of those days?
Restaurants in Tachikawa
Rainbow Spice is a well-known authentic curry speciality store located a 2-minute walk from Tachikawa Station. The interior is bright in colour and has 8 counter seats. Instead of using flour, onions, tomatoes, and homemade yoghurt are added to slowly stew and thicken. The spice blend used for each type of curry is different, and the aroma is enhanced with homemade Garam masala. It is a taste that cannot be tasted anywhere else. For the double curry, you can choose 2 types from several types of roux, and at lunch, it costs 890 yen with coffee or lassi. Rice is free to refill. If you want to eat authentic curry, this is the place you want to go first.
3 minutes walk from JR Tachikawa station, Tempura Wakayama is a tempura specialty store. Seasonal ingredients are used to create these tempuras. There are counter seats and private rooms in the store, which can accommodate up to 4 to 15 people. You can enjoy the sound and taste of tempura while relaxing in a calm atmosphere. For lunch, you can get different set menus starting from 1,000yen. There are the options of getting tempura bowls, tempura ochazuke, tempura sets and others. For dinner, you can get the course meal starting from 5,000yen or order individual dishes. You can even order fugu here.
Rakkan is known as one of the best soy sauce ramen restaurants in Japan. Rakkan started in 2011 as a small, four-seater ramen bar and has now expanded to multiple locations around Tokyo and a few shops in the states. The soup is light and it is made from soybean, wheat and salt, all of which are simple and natural raw materials made in Japan. The soup is combined with straight thin noodles, along with thick and chewy char siu. It is topped with spinach that refreshes the taste with the shredded menma. The onions floating in the soup also bring a nice accent.
Besides the signature menus, there are also seasonal menus that are updated from time to time on social media like their Twitter.
Hinatakanata is a popular izakaya in Tachikawa. Hinatakanata opened in 2007 and the interior reminds you of the atmosphere of the Showa period. Some of the popular dishes here include wagyu beef sirloin and Miyazazaki Hyuga chicken which are prepared on the lava grill that is made of lava from Mt. Fuji. Another popular item on the menu is their karaage. They are known for their juiciness and huge volume. They offer a few incredible and affordable lunch menus, including sashimi bowl, loco-moco, karaage bowl and other dishes. For dinner, they offer a wide range of dishes as well as courses. All of their courses include all-you-can-eat karaage, their signature dish.
This shop focuses on sake. The menu changes twice a month so that you can drink as many types of sake as possible and find your favourite sake. Every day, they offer 4 or more types of sake selected by the manager for an affordable price of 550 yen. Besides sake, you can also try out the wide variety of highballs.
Pizzeria napoletana CANTERA
Pizzeria napoletana CANTERA is an Italian restaurant. With the motif of a foreign bar, antique items such as chandeliers and decorations are on display here. The restaurant uses organic and seasonal ingredients that are sourced directly from the producer. All of the pizzas are cooked using firewood, with the outside being crispy and the inside is soft and moist. More than 10 kinds of wines that match well with the seasons are available here, showcasing different regions and flavours. For lunch, you can get pizza lunch or pasta lunch here, and they come with salad, drink and dolce with your main.
The Dragonfly BAR
The Dragonfly BAR is a hideaway BAR in Green Springs after going up the cascade. This place offers a panoramic view of Showa Kinen Park. Spend an elegant time here with nature-themed food and wine. Inside the bar, there is also a Bösendorfer Piano, which is said to be the treasure of Vienna. They serve a wide range of food including hot dogs, sandwiches, pasta, cakes, tarts, parfaits and drinks including coffee, tea, beers, wine and cocktails. The cocktails here are unique, using different local and international liquors.
Good Sound Coffee Tachikawa
Good Sound Coffee is known for its sound system with a collaboration with Avex. 60 speakers and 12 channel surround sound system are set up in a 3D acoustic space surrounded by 360 ° sound. In this calm store, you can experience a completely different style of coffee shop. Here at this coffee shop, you can get different food such as Focaccia with different flavours, homemade muffins, cheese tarts and more. Besides different organic blend coffee and decaf coffee, they also serve different teas, smoothies, such as mango and pineapple smoothies, and frappes like espresso frappe.
Adam’s Awesome Pie
As the name suggests, Adam’s Awesome Pie serves all kinds of pies, but besides pies, they offer different food items as well as course menus. Their signature menu here is their apple pies. They use plenty of apples from Nagano prefecture and offer freshly baked apples every morning. It is a very popular product that sells out depending on the time of day. Besides this pie, they also have Chicago pizzas with plenty of cheese in the puff pastry. Besides pies, they also offer dishes like salad, burgers, chicken, fish and chips and more.
For weekday dinners, they have a special all-you-can-eat menu that’s loved by many people. For 60 minutes, you can eat as much pie as you want. Although the menu might change sometimes, the typical pies you can get here include Adam’s original apple pie, banana cream pie, pecan nut pie, chocolate pie, cream cheese pie, chorizo and mixed beans chilli con Carne pie, spinach and bacon quiche, meat pie with onions and beef and cream pie with chicken and broccoli. If you want all-you-can-eat, make sure to reserve in advance.
Monroe is a local izakaya that offers cheap deals and is visited by many local residents and people that come for their fresh sashimi. They have a dinner system, where you’re charged 500yen and you get to eat all the different side dishes lined up at the counter. There are usually 5 or more dishes lined up here like chirashizushi, deep-fried tuna and others.
If you order alcohol like shochu and umeshu, they allow you to pour the drinks yourself so you will likely get more bang for your buck. Every Tuesday is ladies’ day and they hold special events that they share on Twitter.
For both lunch and dinner, you can get sashimi bowls here. The fish is sourced directly from Toyosu dish market and they have a wide variety of sashimi to offer here. The volume is also quite massive and truly looks like the advertisements that they put up. Although it might not be top-notch quality, for the price that you’re paying, it is incredible.
Keep in mind that this restaurant only has 9 counter seats so it tends to fill up quite quickly.
Bistro Flatcafe is a wine bistro in Tachikawa. They offer Classic French cuisines such as pate en Clute and Rossini with beef fillet and foie gras. Depending on the season, you can find all kinds of unique dishes here. The chef also creates fusion dishes mixing seasonal French and Japanese ingredients. The staff is friendly and is happy to explain the food and wine pairing, so you can take your time and decide the food and wine you would like to get here. At lunch, they offer a course with an appetizer platter, main course and dessert.
Rumon is a bistro that has nearly 60 years of history. Based on different ingredients, sauces, bread and wine, the restaurant creates different types of dishes for you to enjoy till the very end of the meal. They also offer wines from all over the world on a monthly basis. Each wine is unique, allowing you to experiment and try out different flavours.
One dish that they are known for is their zabuton. It is a very rare part of the cow that can only be taken from a part of the shoulder loin. This is carefully prepared and cooked here and you can enjoy the umami of fat and meat. To go along with this dish, you can also try out their salad, made with fresh vegetables sent directly from a local farm You can enjoy the different textures of the ingredients in the salad.
Hotels in Tachikawa
Hotel Nikko Tachikawa Tokyo
Renovated and reopened in November 2015, Hotel Nikko Tachikawa Tokyo offers an on-site restaurant and free WiFi throughout the property. Private parking is available on site. JR Tachikawa Station is a 7-minute walk from the hotel.
Every room includes a flat-screen TV. Each room has a private bathroom fitted with a bath. For your comfort, you will find slippers and free toiletries.
There is a 24-hour front desk at the property. A trouser press and air purifier are available upon request.
Guests can enjoy continental and Japanese cuisines at the on-site restaurant.
The nearest airport is Haneda Airport, 35 km from Hotel Nikko Tachikawa Tokyo.
Address: 190-0022 Tokyo-to, Tachikawa, Nishiki-cho 1-12-1, Japan
Hotel Emisia Tokyo Tachikawa
Just a 5-minute walk from JR Tachikawa Station, Tachikawa Grand Hotel offers free WiFi in all room. The property is a 10-minute walk away from Showa Kinen Park, and JR Shinjuku Station is 23 minutes by train.
Rooms are fitted with air conditioning. Amenities include a TV, electric kettle, refrigerator and slippers. An en suite bathroom comes with a bath, hairdryer and toothbrushes.
Hotel Emisia Tokyo Tachikawa serves a buffet spread for breakfast, lunch and dinner. You will find a 24-hour front desk and drinks vending machine on site.
Tama Zoo is 16 minutes by monorail from Tachikawa-Kita Monorail Station, while Sanrio Puroland can be reached via a 24-minute monorail ride. The nearest airport is Tokyo Haneda International Airport, 36 km from the property.
Address: 190-0012 Tokyo-to, Tachikawa, Akebono-cho 2-14-16, Japan
Tachikawa is one of the most popular cities for people to visit and hang out in, especially in Western Tokyo. There are so many incredible places for you to visit, especially with the recent developments in the city. Come to Tachikawa for a day or more and indulge yourself in nature, food & drinks, art and culture. Enjoy your adventure around Tachikawa, and refer back to this guide whenever you need to! If you have any questions, feel free to reach out anytime!