Tokyo, The Imperial Palace – Kōkyo


The Imperial Palace (皇居, Kōkyo) is located on the former site of Edo Castle, in a large park area (Chiyoda ward), surrounded by moats and massive stone walls in the very center of Tokyo.


The famous Edo Castle used to be the seat of the Tokugawa Shogun who ruled Japan from 1603 until 1867. The shogunate was overthrown, and the capital and the Imperial Residence were moved from Kyoto to Tokyo. In 1888 the construction of the new Imperial Palace was completed. The palace was destroyed during WW2 and was rebuilt in the same style, afterwards.

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From Kokyo Gaien, the large plaza in front of the Imperial Palace, visitors can view the Nijubashi, two bridges that form the entrance to the inner palace grounds…

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To the south are the large outer gardens of the Imperial Palace, which are also a public park and contain a bronze monument to Kusunoki Masahige,  the 14th century Samurai, loyalist, tactician and strategist…

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