Asakusa / 淺草

Located in Taito-ku along the west bank of the Sumida-gawa River, Asakusa once thrived as a temple town for Senso-ji Temple, and now it is a downtown that rivals with the Ginza, Shijuku, Ikebukuro and Shibuya. The history of Senso-ji Temple goes back far into the past. The legend has it that fishermen brothers discovered an image of Kan’non(the goddess of mercy) in the Sumida-gawa River around 1370 years ago and they were inspired to enshrine it. Its symbol is a large red paper lantern that bears the word "Kaminari-mon", or a thunder gate. There is a constant flow of visitors and worshippers throughout the year.

Numerous shops along Nakamise-dori Street that runs in the approach way to Senso-ji Temple carry a variety of small articles made of the Japanese paper and other traditional flavored goods such as folding fans. It is a lovely shopping street that attracts many foreign visitors.

Asakusa is also known as the site for many traditional events. Sanja-matsuri is a festival of Senso-ji Temple and is famous for the palanquin parade that conveys the "Edokko Katagi", or Edoites’ spirit, which represents the traditional temperament of the townsfolk of Tokyo. Other festivals include Hozuki-ichi, or Japanese lantern plant market in summer, Tori-no-ichi, or Cock Fair at Otori-jinja Shrine in early winter and Hagoita-ichi, or ornate Japanese battledore racket market at the end of the year. The most popular event is the firework display on the Sumida-gawa River in summer. Over 1 million people throng to watch it.

位於東京都台東區、隅田川河西岸的淺草,是作爲淺草寺的寺前商業街“門前町”發展而成的,與銀座、新宿、池袋、澀谷同爲繁華街區。淺草寺的歷史很悠久,它的起源據傳是在 1370 年前,一對以捕魚爲生的兄弟倆在隅田川中發現了觀音像,就建了這座寺院供奉起來。淺草寺的象徵物是風雷神門,上面挂著寫有“雷門”兩個字的大紅燈籠,這裏每天都有前來參拜的觀光客,終年熙熙攘攘。

淺草還以舉行傳統民俗活動的場所而聞名。“三社節”是淺草神社的一項祭典活動,它作爲神轎祭典,十分出名。這項活動表現出自古以來居住在東京庶民區的人們的氣質,即所謂的“江戶人氣質”。其他祭典還有夏天的“鬼燈市”、初冬大鷲神社的“雞市”和年關的“羽子板市”等。隅田川上每年舉行的夏日焰火大會是最受人歡迎的活動,前來觀賞焰火的人都在 100 萬以上。

How to get there?

Take JR Yamanote line from Tokyo to Ueno station, then change subway Ginza line get off at Asakusa station.