The Tsutsujigaoka Park Festival is the event you should not miss when you plan to visit Tatebayashi city. It takes place between April 15th and May 15th every year boasting its beautiful 10,000 azaleas in more than 50 different kinds. Among them are the very rare 800 year-old tree and 5-meter high tree. You can’t help holding your breath while walking among these azaleas. Late April is the best time to visit, but the turnout will be overwhelming especially during Golden Week.
Tatebayashi Flower Town Project is being promoted to attract visitors. Various kinds of flowers come into bloom one after another almost throughout the year - cherry blossoms in March and April, moss pinks, which are pretty popular these days, in May and June, irises in May and June, lotus flowers in July and August, cluster-amaryllises in September, mums in October and November. You’d never feel hungry if you were a bee.
In April, The Tatebayashi Cherry Blossoms & World’s Largest Flying Carp Festival takes place in four sites in the city. The number of its carp streamers – some 5,000 – was recorded on the Guinness Book of World Records in 2005. Visit the sites by early April to enjoy both cherry blossoms and the Koi Nobori carp streamers.
Koi Nobori display...
began in the Edo Period (17C – 19C) among warrior families to pray for their sons’ success. People have displayed Koi Nobori carp streamers made of paper, fabric or non-woven fabric on the pole in their garden.
The Morin-ji Temple famous as a raccoon temple welcomes you with its 22 raccoon statutes. At the Mukai Chiaki Children’s Science Museum, you can experience moon-walking. Would like to enjoy the rare handheld fireworks? Come to the Jonuma Stadium (on Saturday, July 25 in 2009). They begin lighting fireworks in their hands at 7:30pm.
You wouldn’t want to plan any trip without considering good local delicacies, would you? Tatebayashi Udon noodles are made with quality flour and water to create a good taste. Enjoy the river fish, especially the fried catfish, too if you’ve not tried one before.
Just a one-hour drive from Tokyo via Tohoku Expressway or a one-hour Ryomo express train ride on the Tobu-Isesaki Line brings you to Tatebayashi, where many local charms are ready to attract you.
For more information on Tatebayashi, visit http://www.city.tatebayashi.gunma.jp/kanko/index.html (In Japanese only).