Kiba Koen 木場公園
Kiba Park is a large, multi-purpose park in Tokyo's Koto ward. Mostly wide open space, it is occupied by families strolling and boys throwing baseballs.
"Kiba" literally means 'wood place', and it was here, beginning in the Edo era (1603-1868), that timber was brought into Tokyo for construction. The area was designated as parkland in 1977 to commemorate fifty years of the reign of Emperor Hirohito. However, it was not until 1992 that Kiba Park was developed in its present form.
Kiba Park is 24 hectares (almost 60 acres) in size. It is divided into two blocks, north and south, divided by the small Sendai-bori River.
At the northern end of the northern block is the Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo. The northern block has six tennis courts, and a general sport/event space.
The southern block has a large lawned area, a barbecue area, an athletics track and on the western side, i.e., the side nearest Mitsume-dori Avenue, it has has a network of paths through botanical gardens, offering the kind of privacy ideal for picnics, or just lying there relaxing. There is a dedicated barbecue area at the northern end of the main field that takes up most of the southern block. However, as with most parks in Tokyo, setting up a barbecue requires making a reservation. Call the park administration at 03-5245-1770.
From inside Kiba Park, towards the north-east is the prominent concrete frame of a suspension bridge. Across this bridge and to the right (i.e. north-east) is a small playground (or 'Adventure Park') for kids. Hidden among the trees it is easy to miss. In summer, from 1 July to 31 August (except on Mondays when it is closed), it has splashing/swimming facilities for kids from 10am to 3.45pm.
Open 24 hours, 365 days.
Access - getting to Kiba Park
From Kiba station (Tozai subway line), exit 3, 5 minutes.
From Kiyosumi-shirakawa station (Oedo subway line), exit 1, 15 minutes.
Kiba Park Service Center
4-6-1 Hirano, Koto-ku, Tokyo 135-0023
Tel. 03 5245 1770