Where To See The Best Chrysanthemums In Tokyo

These eye-popping exhibitions will change your opinion of those humble fall flowers forever! Here’s where to see the best chrysanthemums in Tokyo:

YUSHIMA TENJIN SHRINE

Life-sized historical figures, made from...chrysanthemums!

Life-sized historical figures, made from…chrysanthemums!

Great balls o' chrysanthemums, each of these is ONE PLANT.

Great balls o’ chrysanthemums, each of these is ONE PLANT.

Prize specimens vie for top honors. This style requires the grower to train the plant into three stalks of exactly the same height, then coax three perfect flowers to bloom at the exact same time.

Prize specimens vie for top honors. This style requires the grower to train the plant into three stalks of exactly the same height, then coax three perfect flowers to bloom at the exact same time.

The Elvis bouffant is a Thing.

The Elvis bouffant is a Thing.

The shrine bridge, with its fancy on.

The shrine bridge, with its fancy on.

Admission: Free

Dates: November 1-23

MAP & DIRECTIONS

SHINJUKU GYOUEN GARDEN

The most perfect of the perfect bigger-than-your-head blooms

The most perfect of the perfect bigger-than-your-head blooms

Yes, each of these is just ONE PLANT I'm seriously not kidding.

Yes, each of these is just ONE PLANT I’m seriously not kidding.

Elvis bouffants on parade.

Elvis bouffants on parade.

And if that isn't enough. gorgeous plantings in full bloom, throughout the garden.

And if that isn’t enough. gorgeous plantings in full bloom, throughout the garden.

Admission: ¥200

Dates: November 1-15

MAP & DIRECTIONS

KAMEIDO TENJIN SHRINE

In addition to the bouffants, balls and prize specimens, the Kameido Shrine features this model of Skytree, with the t=real thing helpfully modeling for comparison in the background.

In addition to the bouffants, balls and prize specimens, the Kameido Shrine features this model of Skytree, with the real thing helpfully standing around for comparison in the background.

Admission: Free

Dates: October 23 – November 23

MAP & DIRECTIONS

MEIJI SHRINE

What the Meiji Shrine chrysanthemums lack in artistic innovation, they make up in perfection. I dare the gods to find any flaw at all in those white ones.

What the Meiji Shrine chrysanthemums lack in artistic innovation, they make up in perfection. I dare the gods to find any flaw at all in those white ones.

Admission: Free

Dates: October 23 – November 23

MAP & DIRECTIONS

SENSO-JI TEMPLE

AsakusaChrysanthemums

You won’t see any crazy chrysanthemum shenanigans at Senso-ji, but you’ll see the most prized plants Tokyo can offer. And after you finish looking at the flowers, there’s lots of other fun stuff to see and do there.

Admission: Free

Dates: October 15 – November 15

MAP & DIRECTIONS

Nearly every big shrine (and some temples) host chrysanthemum competitions in the month of November. If you’d like to see the chrysanthemums the next time you’re in Tokyo, directions and maps to the Yushima Tenjin ShrineKameido ShrineMeiji ShrineYasukuni ShrineShinjuku Gyouen Garden and Senso-ji Temple are on my website, The Tokyo Guide I Wish I’d Had.

Jonelle Patrick is the author of the Only In Tokyo mystery series. And guess what? The first book is finally out in PAPERBACK!

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More Nightshade book goodness here, in case you think you might want to, you know, read it or something