An Edo-period town steeped in history
Sawara, also known as Koedo or Little Edo, is a town located in the Kanto region of japan. It is one of the best places to experience Japanese history and immerse yourself in the atmosphere of the Edo period (1603-1867). With its old buildings, traditional crafts, and living history, Sawara offers a glimpse into the rich cultural heritage of Japan.
The town of Sawara is easily accessible by train from Tokyo, Chiba City, and Narita. Visitors can take the JR Sobu Line to Narita Station from Tokyo Station or Chiba Station, and then change to a local Narita Line to reach Sawara Station. Alternatively, there is an express bus service available from Tokyo Station to Sawara, which takes approximately 90 minutes.
During the Edo period, Sawara was a prosperous merchant town that served as a hub for rice shipments. Many of the businesses in Sawara have been operating continuously since that time, giving the town an authentic and nostalgic atmosphere. As you wander through the streets of Sawara, you will be surrounded by the merchants’ houses, old warehouses, and historic buildings that have stood the test of time.
One of the highlights of Sawara is its historical district, which has remained largely unchanged since the Edo period. The district is characterized by its beautiful canals and bridges, including the famous “waterfall bridge” where water flows at certain times each day. Walking along these canals and crossing the bridges is like stepping back in time and experiencing the charm of historical Japan.
To truly experience the spirit of Sawara, it is recommended to visit during the Sawara Grand Festival. This festival is held twice a year, in July and October, and features floats topped with giant dolls representing legendary warriors and heroes. The floats parade through the town, accompanied by traditional music and dance performances, creating a lively and festive atmosphere. Another recommended time to visit Sawara is during the Ayame Matsuri, which celebrates the blooming of irises in the town.
In addition to its historical and cultural attractions, Sawara is also home to the Suigo Sawara Ayame Park, a botanic garden located within the Suigo-Tsukuba Quasi-National Park. The park boasts a collection of 1.5 million irises, making it the largest iris collection in asia. Visitors can admire the vibrant colors of the irises and explore the park’s other features, such as the 300 types of lotuses and the wisteria flowers that hang from a 70-meter long tunnel. The Suigo Canal, which winds through the park, adds to the tranquil and scenic ambiance of the area.
As with any travel destination, it is important to check the official website or contact the local authorities for the latest information and updates. The COVID-19 pandemic may have affected the operating hours and accessibility of certain attractions in Sawara.
In conclusion, Sawara is a town that offers a unique and immersive experience of Japanese history and culture. Its well-preserved Edo-period buildings, traditional crafts, and festivals provide visitors with a glimpse into the past and an opportunity to appreciate the rich heritage of Japan. Whether you are interested in history, architecture, or simply want to soak in the atmosphere of old Japan, Sawara is a must-visit destination in the Kanto region.
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