車いすで観光 皇居東御苑

Field Work on a Wheelchair at the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace

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こんにちは。車いすユーザーのYUKORINです。2019年3月17日、私たちアクセシブルのメンバーは皇居東御苑にて今年初めのバリアフリー調査を行いました。皇居とは江戸時代に建設された江戸城の史跡であり、現在の天皇皇后両陛下のお住まいです。皇居東御苑は皇居附属庭園として無料で一般公開されています。

Hi! I’m YUKORIN. I am a wheelchair user. On March 17th, our Accessible members carried out our first wheelchair accessibility review in 2019 at the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace. The Imperial Palace was built on the historical site of the former Edo Palace which was constructed in the Edo Period. Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress now reside in the Imperial Palace. The East Gardens of the Imperial Palace is open to the public as the gardens belonging to the palace.

皇居
The Imperial Palace

東京駅丸の内側の向かいにあるビルで集合した私たち。東京駅丸の内前広場を通り過ぎ、皇居東御苑へ向かいます。

We met at a building located across the avenue from the Marunouchi side of Tokyo Station. Passing by the Marunouchi Central Square, we headed for the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace.

東京駅
Tokyo Station

途中、かつては東京駅へ向かう皇室の馬車専用道だったという行幸通りを通りました。広くて車いすで歩きやすかったです。

We walked on the Gyoko-dori Avenue that was once the exclusive avenue for horse carriages of the Imperial family which went to Tokyo Station. I found it easy to walk along the very wide avenue on a wheelchair.

行幸通り
The Gyoko-dori Avenue

和田倉噴水公園
Wadakura Fountain Park

東京駅丸の内側から徒歩約10分、皇居外苑にある和田倉噴水公園に到着しました。最初のバリアフリー調査のスポットです。立派な噴水ですね。

We arrived at the Wadakura Fountain Park. It is located within 10 minutes’ walk from the Marunouchi side of Tokyo Station. This park is the first spot of our wheelchair accessibility review. A splendid fountain!

和田倉噴水公園
The Wadakura Fountain Park

私たちは行幸通りから入園しましたが、和田倉橋を渡っての入園もできます。
We entered the park from the Gyoko-dori Avenue. But you can also enter by crossing the Wadakura bridge.

和田倉橋
The Wadakura bridge

緩やかなスロープが設置されていました。
A gentle ramp is installed at the park.

公園内のスロープ
The ramp at the park

多目的トイレをチェック。広さは十分だけど、あまりきれいじゃないですね・・・。
We checked a multipurpose restroom. It is not so clean in spite of being spacious enough.

和田倉噴水公園の多目的トイレ
The multipurpose restroom at the Wadakura Fountain Park

せっかくだから和田倉橋も渡ってみましょう。公園と和田倉橋の間は砂利道ですが、アスファルトのように砂利が固められている箇所があり、車いすで通れました。

Let me try to cross the Wadakura bridge just because we visited the park. Although the path between the park and the bridge is covered with gravel, I could walk along part of the gravel path which is firmly fixed on the ground like asphalt.

1カ所固められた砂利道
The part of the gravel path is firmly fixed on the ground.

砂利の敷かれた和田倉橋。でも、細かぁ~い砂利なので車いすで問題なく渡れます。
The ground of the Wadakura bridge is covered with gravel too. However, wheelchair users have no problem in crossing the bridge as the gravel is minuscule.

和田倉橋の地面
The ground of the Wadakura bridge

公園に戻りました。噴水から流れる池に橋が架かっていて、段差のところはスロープになっています。
I got back to the park. There is a bridge across a canal from the fountain rivers. And ramps are built on both sides of the bridge.

橋のスロープ
One ramp on one side of the bridge

この辺で公園の調査は切り上げにして東御苑へ行きましょう。
Finish conducting our accessibility check at the park and going right to the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace.

東御苑へ向かいます。
Going to the East Gardens.

皇居東御苑
The East Gardens of the Imperial Palace

道すがら、皇居東御苑の門の1つである桔梗門がありました。
On the way to the garden, there is the Kikyo-mon Gate that is one of the gates of the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace.

桔梗門
The Kikyo-mon Gate

桔梗門前の公衆トイレに多目的トイレを発見。うん、ここはきれいで設備が整っています。
We found a multipurpose restroom at the public restrooms near the Kikyo-mon Gate. It is quite clean and well-equipped. Good!

桔梗門付近にある多目的トイレ
The multipurpose restroom near the Kikyo-mon Gate

いよいよ皇居東御苑の大手門に到着です! 和田倉噴水公園を通り過ぎるだけにして、東京駅丸の内側から直接行けばここまで15分くらいでしょうか。

At last we arrived at the Ote-mon Gate of the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace. It would take about 15 minutes to go directly to the garden from the Marunouchi side of Tokyo Station just passing through the Wadakura Fountain Park.

皇居東御苑の看板
A signboard of the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace

私たちが入園した大手門は、高麗門と渡櫓門を合わせて大手門と呼び、こちらは高麗門です。
The gate we entered is called the “Ote-mon Gate” which includes the Korai-mon Gate and the Watariyagura-mon Gate. Here is the Korai-mon Gate.

高麗門
The Korai-mon Gate

手荷物検査がありました。
We had a security check.

手荷物検査
The security check

外国人観光客のための多言語音声ガイドアプリの標識を見付けました。来園者には海外から来られる方々も多いそうです。
We found a signboard of a multi-language audio guide app for foreign tourists. Many visitors to the garden seem to be tourists from overseas.

多言語音声ガイドアプリの標識
The signboard of the multi-language audio guide app

こちらが渡櫓門です。重厚な造りですね。
Here is the Watariyagura-mon Gate. A substantial structure.

渡櫓門
The Watariyagura-mon Gate

渡櫓門をくぐると発券所がありました。なお、この御苑は基本的に月曜日と金曜日がお休みです。月曜日が祝日の場合は開園となり、その代わりに火曜日になることがあるので、来園の際には事前に休園日をチェックしておくとよいでしょう。また、大手門では3台の車いすを無料で借りることができ、平川門でも1台の車いすを借りることができます。(但し、予約は行っておらず先着順)

You get to the ticket office after going through the Watariyagura-mon Gate. By the way, this garden is basically closed on Mondays and Fridays. However, it is open in case a national holiday falls on Monday and it is closed instead on the next day that is Tuesday. You might want to check the closed days in advance of your visit. Also, you can rent up to three wheelchairs free of charge at the Ote-mon Gate and one wheelchair at the Hirakawa-mon Gate respectively. You can rent them on a first come first served basis but you cannot make a booking for them.

発券所
The ticket office
発券所の標識
A signboard of the ticket office

ここで入園票をもらいます。これは退園のときに各門でお返しします。これを無くしたら大変面倒なことになるそうなので、無くさないようにお気を付けくださいね。

You receive the admission ticket to enter the garden. You need to return it at the gate where you leave the garden. Please make sure to keep it. Losing it will put you in a very troublesome situation.

入園票
The admission ticket

まず、入ってみたのは三の丸尚蔵館です。展示品は定期的に入れ替えますが、今回は天皇皇后両陛下の御歌などが展示されていました。

The first place we visited was the Museum of the Imperial Collections named San-no-maru Sho-zo-kan in Japanese. The exhibits are regularly changed on various themes. The poems of Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress were displayed on the day.

三の丸尚蔵館
The Museum of the Imperial Collections

入口にはちゃんとスロープがついています
There is an access ramp at the entrance of the museum.

三の丸尚蔵館入口のスロープ
The ramp at the entrance of the Museum of the Imperial Collection

三の丸尚蔵館付近にある多目的トイレです。設備が整っており、公園のお手洗いとしてはきれいです。
Here is a multipurpose restroom near the Museum of the Imperial Collection. I found it well-equipped and relatively clean as a restroom in gardens.

三の丸尚蔵館付近の多目的トイレ
The multipurpose restroom near the Museum of the Imperial Collection

大手休憩所に立ち寄りました。ここでは飲み物やアイスクリームが売っています。出入口は3つあり、正面の出入口のみが自動ドアーでした。

We dropped by a resting place with a Kiosk. You can buy soft drinks and soft ice creams here. There are three entrances and an automatic door is equipped only at the main entrance.

大手休憩所
The resting place with a Kiosk

休憩所、同心番所を過ぎ、右折して二の丸庭園に向かいます。園内は全体的にこのような感じの広い道が続いていました。

Leaving behind the resting place and the Doshin-bansho Guardhouse, we turned right and followed the walkway to the Ninomaru Garden. The most part of walkway in the garden is broad as you can see below.

園内の道
The broad walkway

アスファルトの道を外れて入ったのは二の丸雑木林です。お庭っぽい雰囲気になってきましたね。
We went off the asphalt walkway and then entered the Ninomaru Grove. The atmosphere became like a natural garden.

二の丸雑木林
The Ninomaru Grove

雑木林を抜けると二の丸庭園が広がっていました。風情溢れる日本庭園ですね。天皇皇后両陛下も時折この庭園をご散策されるそうです。

When we got out of the grove, the scenery of the Ninomaru Garden was laid out before our eyes. The Japanese garden is filled with an ambience of refined elegance of nature. Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress sometimes enjoy taking a walk around the garden.

二の丸庭園
The Ninomaru Garden

岩の階段がありましたが、緩やかだし、上っちゃえ!!
There are rock stairs. I’m going to try to climb up as the stairs are pretty gentle!

車いすで階段を上っちゃいます!
I’m climbing the stairs on a wheelchair!

高い所からだとやっぱり見晴らしが違いますねー! 感動でした。
I could admire the panoramic view that I would not able to admire at the lower place. I was impressed with the beautiful scenery.

高い所から見た庭園風景
The panoramic view of the garden

二の丸庭園を出た私たち。途中で車いす走行禁止の汐見坂の前を通りました。確かに、この坂は急過ぎて車いすで上り下りは難しそうです。

Getting out of the Ninomaru Garden, we passed in front of the Shiomi-zaka slope where wheelchair users have to refrain from going up. This slope is so steep that wheelchair users would not be able to go up and down.

汐見坂
the Shiomi-zaka slope
車いす走行禁止の標識
A signboard saying the slope is too steep for wheelchairs

江戸時代には100人の警備員の詰所であった百人番所です。歴史に詳しいYama-chanのお話によると、江戸時代初期は忍者が番をしていたとか。

This is the Hyaku-nin-bansho Guardhouse where 100 guards were stationed in the house in the Edo period. Yama-chan who is one of our members and is familiar with history told us that Ninjas, martial art spies, were stationed there in the early Edo period.

百人番所
The Hyaku-nin-bansho Guardhouse
隣にある植込みが建物と同じ形に刈ってありました。何だかお茶目。
The evergreen shrub located next is trimmed into the same shape as the guardhouse. Somewhat cute.
百人番所のかたちをした植込み
The evergreen shrub trimmed into the same shape as the guardhouse.

防御施設である富士見櫓の近くに、ユニバーサルデザインのベンチがありました。座るときや立ち上がるときに捕まれる手すりが付いています。
There are several universally designed benches near the Fujimi-yagura which was a defense tower. You can hold the handrails attached to the bench when you sit down or stand up.

手すり付きのベンチ
The bench with handrails

本丸広場の西側にある茶畑。また車いす走行禁止の標識です。きっとこの急な勾配とカーブが車いすには危険なのでしょう。

Here is the Tea Garden located west of the Honmaru O-shibafu Lawn. We found a signboard saying that the slope is too steep for wheelchairs. I assumed that it would be too dangerous for wheelchair users to walk along the sharp curve on the steep slope.

茶畑での車いす走行禁止の標識
The signboard at the Tea Garden which says the slope is too steep for wheelchairs

本丸広場に寒緋桜が咲いていました! 冬に咲く桜、素敵ですね。
Prunus campanulate which is also called Taiwan cherry was in bloom around the Honmaru O-shibafu Lawn. A kind of cherry trees blooming in the winter. Fantastic!

寒緋桜
Prunus campanulate

本丸休憩所に隣接した多目的トイレです。適当な広さと先ず先ずの設備。日本の公園によくある公衆トイレといった感じですね。

We checked a multipurpose restroom located next to a resting place near the Honmaru O-shibafu Lawn. It is appropriately spacious and the equipment is okay. I often see this type of multipurpose restroom at public restrooms of parks in Japan.

本丸休憩所の多目的トイレ
The multipurpose restroom located next to the resting place

本丸休憩所を少し行ったところに天守台がありました。ここもけっこう急な坂なのに、車いす走行禁止の標識はなかったんですよね。今回は時間の関係で上がりませんでしたが、また来るチャンスがあったら上ってみようかな。

The Tenshu-dai Base of the Main Tower is located within a minute walk from the resting place. Although we would need to climb the quite steep slope to the deck, we found no signboards saying that the slope is too steep for wheelchairs. We didn’t go up to the deck since we didn’t have enough time. But I look forward to trying to go up if I can have a chance to come here again.

天守台
The Tenshu-dai Base of the Main Tower

観光も兼ねた皇居東御苑の調査はここで終了です。私たちは御苑の北西側にある北桔橋門から外に出ました。写真の左側に小屋が写っていますが、ここへ入園票をお返しくださいね。

Getting out from the Kita-hane-bashi-mon Gate located northwest of the garden, we wrapped up our wheelchair accessibility review and sightseeing at the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace. You can see a hut on the left side in the picture below. You need to return the admission ticket to a staffer who is stationed in the hut.

北桔橋門
The Kita-hane-bashi-mon Gate

退園後、お堀の周りをお散歩しました。壮大なお堀。お城ならではの景色ですよね。
We took a walk around the Imperial Palace moat after going out of the garden. A massive moat. We enjoyed the magnificent view where the palace is surrounded with the huge moat.

皇居のお堀
The Imperial Palace moat

将門塚
The grave of Taira no Masakado

北桔橋門から歩いて10~15分、最後に将門塚を訪れました。平将門は、平安時代の中期、939年の天慶の乱で関東を制圧し、新天皇を名乗った武将です。

The last place we visited was the grave of Taira no Masakado. It took 10 to 15 minutes from the Kita-hane-bashi-mon Gate on foot. Taira no Masakado was a samurai who claimed the title of a new emperor by conquering the Kanto region at the Tengyo battle in 939 during the middle of the Heian period of Japanese history.

将門塚の石碑
The monument of Masakado’s grave

お墓までは階段だったので、メンバーに車いすを持ち上げてもらいました。
There are some stairs to the grave. Our members lifted my wheelchair to the upper ground.

階段ではメンバーがお手伝いしてくれます。
Our members help me take the stairs.


1,000年以上たった今でも、私たちのようにこうしてお参りに来る人々がいるのですね。歴史を感じながら、偉大な武将の墓前で手を合わせてきました。

More than 1,000 years has passed since his death. Even today ordinary people like us pay a visit to his grave to trace the history. Feeling the significance of history, I paid reverence toward the great samurai in front of his grave.

平将門のお墓
The grave of Taira no Masakado
寒緋桜さん、寒い中で咲いてくれてありがとう。
Dear prunus campanulate, thank you for blooming in the cold weather.


日本では今年2019年4月30日の天皇陛下のご退位に伴い、5月1日から新しい元号になります。幸いにも、平成の最後という歴史の節目に、私たちは皇室の庭園とも言える皇居東御苑へ訪れることができました。東御苑は東京駅から徒歩で行ける距離にありながら、静かな雰囲気の中で日本の文化や歴史、自然を感じられるところです。バリアフリー面でも特に問題はないため、車いすユーザーの方々にもお勧めの観光スポットです。これから春は様々な花々が咲くことでしょう。あなたも都心のオアシスのような皇居東御苑を訪れて、ほっと一息つきませんか?

His Majesty the Emperor will abdicate on the 30th of April 2019 and a new imperial era will begin on the 1st of May. Fortunately, we had a chance to visit the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace, which is also the gardens for the Imperial family, when the turning point is coming to put an end of the Heisei imperial era and open a new chapter in Japanese history. Although you can reach the gardens from Tokyo Station within some minutes’ walk, you can feel Japanese culture, history and nature in a tranquil atmosphere. Finding no problems in walking around, I recommend wheelchair users the gardens as a wheelchair accessible sightseeing spot. Various kinds of flowers are going to bloom as spring is coming around. Would you like to have a rest at the East Gardens of the Imperial Palace where you can feel as if you were in an oasis far away from busy Tokyo?

車いすで観光 東京都庁展望室
Field Work on a Wheelchair at
車いすで観光 鎌倉駅周辺エリア
Field Work on a Wheelchair at
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