A week after our previous report from Tokyo, I returned to the city to find out that the autumn colors have not reached their peak yet.

Most of the colors I observed were still somewhat muted - especially in contrast to yesterday's vibrant displays in Kyoto - and I expect the peak in Tokyo to take place in early - and possibly into mid - December.

Jingu Gaien Ginkgo Avenue

Peak Color

Usually changing colors a little bit ahead of maple trees, many ginkgo trees along the Jingu Gaien Ginkgo Avenue (a short walk from Aoyama-Itchome Station) have reached the peak of the seasonal beauty, except some prominent greener ones near the start of the road. Lots of tourists and locals were present to enjoy the vibrant golden colors. Almost no leaves have fallen yet, and I expect the peak to continue for about a week into December.

Inui-dori Street

Approaching Peak

Inui-dori Street runs through an area of the Tokyo Imperial Palace, which is usually closed to the public. It gets opened to commoners only for short periods during the cherry blossom and autumn color seasons. In autumn 2023, the street is open daily from November 25 to December 3 between 9:00 and 15:30 (entry until 15:00), and I went to check the state of the colors. Admission is free.

Visitors enter through the Sakashita-mon Gate near Tokyo Station, where they have to undergo a security check, and leave through the Inui-mon Gate across from the Kitanomaru Park, not far from Takebashi Station along the Tozai Subway Line.

The number of colorful trees along Inui-dori is modest, but the opportunity to access the usually closed-off area of the imperial palace adds additional excitement. The colors of the trees along the approximately 750 meter long street still felt a little muted. I expect them to become more vibrant over the next few days, but much of the peak may fall into the period after December 3, when the road will be closed again.

Koishikawa Korakuen Garden

Approaching Peak

Similarly, the colors at Koishikawa Korakuen, one of Tokyo's prettiest traditional landscape gardens, were still developing today. They should reach a more fiery state in early December, and I would not be overly surprised if some parts of the garden remained worth an autumn color visit into mid December.