Our Tokyo adventure starts here, the entrance to Arisugawa-no-miya Memorial Park, which features a beautiful woodland ravine.
A fanciful mural at the Taro Okamoto Memorial Museum. (Cooperation by Taro Okamoto Memorial Museum)
A monument in the garden of the Taro Okamoto Memorial Museum. (Cooperation by Taro Okamoto Memorial Museum)
Prada Boutique Aoyama, with its unusual curved-glass exterior.
One of Taro Okamotoï¿½s monuments on display at the Childrenï¿½s Castle.
Childrenï¿½s Castle - with fun artworks even next to the parking lot.
The starting point for our adventure is the north entrance to Arisugawa-no-miya Memorial Park. The park has several entrances, so make sure you start from the right one. As you begin, go out of the parkï¿½s north entrance and immediately turn right. There will be an intersection and a koban (police box) in front of you. Turn left at the intersection and follow the street. This is a narrow downhill road, so watch your speed!
When you reach the end of the road, turn right. Then, when you reach a wide street called Roppongi Street, go to the large intersection on your right (the Nishi-azabu intersection) and cross Roppongi Street at that intersection. After you cross the intersection, go left along Roppongi Street and then turn right at the second alley. Go down the alley. This part of the journey is a bit of an uphill climb. Pedal hard and hang in there!
When you reach the school ground in front of Seinan Elementary School, stop, catch your breath, and take a look around. Nearby here you will find a museum dedicated to the artist Okamoto Taro. He made lots of dramatic works of art and is famous for the phrase, ï¿½Art is an explosion.ï¿½ This museum used to be Okamotoï¿½s real home and studio, so there is no big sign in front.
To get to the museum from Seinan Elementary School, go left at the intersection immediately before the school ground and go straight down that street. You will see a publishing company on your left. Turn left into the alley that runs next to the publishing company. When you see a unique mural and imaginative monuments, you can be sure that you have found the museum.
After you leave the Taro Okamoto Memorial Museum, go back to the intersection in front of Seinan Elementary School. Turn left at that intersection and you will be on From First Street, which has lots of designer boutiques. One building that really stands out on this street is the Prada Boutique Aoyama with its unusual exterior covered with curved glass.
Continue along From First Street. When you come to the large Omotesando intersection, cross it and turn left. Go along Aoyama Street. When you see Taro Okamotoï¿½s monument Tree of Children, you are right outside the Childrenï¿½s Castle. This place has lots of fun things you can do, including two theaters and a computer room. The roof of the theater, called Fushigi-gaoka (Mystery Hill), has an amazing sloped surface made of mirror glass.