Michael Taylor was flown to Tokyo, Japan, by United Airlines. This is the fifth in a travelogue series based on his trip to the Japanese capital.
Hama Rikyu is now a municipal park that is open to the public. It is also the site of a pier with water buses taking passengers to Tokyo's Asakusa district, one of the Japanese capital's historic districts. The price is 720 yen, and the trip takes about 45 minutes.
Conrad Tokyo Hotel
While staying at the Conrad Tokyo, I had a beautiful view of Hama Rikyu from my hotel room. On my first full day in Tokyo, I decided to take one the sightseeing tours recommended by the hotel. It commenced in Hama Rikyu Park.
As I walked from my hotel to the park, I discovered that Hama Rikyu was surrounded by a moat, which was rather putrid smelling. It was, after all, mid summer, and Tokyo's summers are not for the faint of heart.
Inside the park, I walked directly to the pier to exchange a coupon issued by the hotel for a boat ticket. I had just missed the boat – quite literally. The next one was due in about 40 minutes – just enough time to explore the park.
During my walk, I discovered flower beds, lawns, pine trees, a teahouse, and a small number of ponds, all of which depend on seawater from Edo Bay. I was totally fascinated by the mechanical locks that let water into and out of the ponds based (I presume) on the tides.
It was a lovely park, and I'm grateful that I had such a nice view of it from my hotel room window.
Hopefully I can visit it again some day, preferably in cooler weather, and enjoy tea at the beautiful teahouse that I only had time enough to walk past – but not enter – on the shores of one of the ponds.
To Be Continued
For More on My Adventure in Tokyo, Japan