Greetings~! 大石神社_(横浜市)境内の常夜燈.jpg

It's officially autumn, which means it's a wonderful time to curl up with a good book after cooking up some of the season's most delicious, hearty foods; or wander out to see the latest exhibits at art galleries before cheering on your favorite rugby team at one of the many match venues. Autumn in general is thought to be the best season for sports in Japan ever since the Tokyo Olympics of 1964! Whatever your preference, we hope you're enjoying this crisp, colorful time of the year.

This month, we feature Nagatsuta: an area with many wonderful spots to discover, from shops to shrines and sports centers to beautiful mountainous terrain. It is conveniently located four minutes from Suzukakedai and 30 minutes from Shibuya.

Connected to the station is a wonderful, bustling shoutengai, or shopping street, where you can find Asian and Western restaurants, greengrocers, butcher shops, electronics shops, and more. During the Edo Period, Nagatsuta served as a "post station" - a resting place for travelers on their journey around the country. As such, some of the stores in the shoutengai may date back more than a hundred years!

About ten minutes from the station, you will find two shrines - Oishi Jinja and Ouji Jinja - considered special and cherished as they enshrine tutelary deities that served as protectors of the old village. Three hundred year-old fir trees surround the ancient structures, further heightening the historic quality of the shrines and the area in general.

Also nearby is the Nagatsuta district center, which houses a playroom for infants, a library, and a gymnasium where you can play badminton and ping-pong. There is also a variety of lectures and events held at the center, in which everyone is welcome to participate. 飯縄神社.jpg

Ever heard of "the other Mount Takao", the one that sits adjacent to Suzukakedai Campus? Not to be confused with its more famous namesake in Hachioji, this lesser-known mountain is the highest in Midori Ward, Yokohama, where many go to see Mount Fuji on a fine day. At the summit is a shrine for Izuna, the god of sericulture, as this practice of raising silk worms and silk farming for products and materials once flourished in Nagatsuta.

On the east side of Suzukakedai Campus is Genkaida Park. 玄海田公園,_Genkaida_Park_-_panoramio.jpgMore than just a regular park, it also contains a special sanctuary for fireflies called "Hotaru Sawa". Entrance to this area is not permitted except for special events during which many gather to marvel at these amazing creatures and their bioluminescent glow. This park also has athletic grounds for soccer and baseball lovers, vast lawn space for those who want to sit and relax, and a barbecue area where they supply you with everything you need if you make reservation. A short walk away is APITA Nagatsuta, a huge commercial complex with some 60 shops, restaurants, health clinics, and others.

If you prefer a stroll after sunset, then check out Nagatsuta Minami-dai Park. We highly recommend its lovely starlit nighttime views.

The shrines and parks introduced to you today were taken from the Nagatsuta Jukkei - "Ten spots in Nagatsuta surrounded by rich nature and history" - chosen by the City of Yokohama. Visit their website for a sightseeing map containing tidbits on the town's history. The map can be the perfect travel companion while checking out Nagatsuta on a fine autumn day!

Nagatsuta map (Japanese)

Nagatsuta district center (Japanese)

Oishi, Ouji, and Izuna Shrines (Japanese)

Genkaida Park (Japanese)


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