Yoyogi National Stadium, which was built to house the swimming and diving events at the 1964 Olympics, marks the entrance to the park. Just past the stadium is an opportune spot for vendors to sell food, drink and souvenirs.
Yoyogi Park was the spot of the first powered aircraft flight in Japan, although at the time it wasn't a park yet. It housed the US military barracks for officers during the Allied invastion in World War II. And it was used to hold the athletes village during the 1964 Olympics. It became a park in 1967 and is a popular spot for clubs, hobby groups, and cosplayers. We were there on a brisk February day and we saw joggers, walkers and a group meeting.
One of the things we saw in the park was a video shoot - or at least, that's what we thought it was. There was a girl dressed in Harajaku style dancing and singing over and over to a song played on a boom box. A man was playing the music and watching the girl (the director?) and there were people in the background. It must've been a popular song and dance because people walking in the park came up and performed it with her - behind the scenes of course!
I did mention it was cold out, right? She must have been freezing!
The park is especially popular during Cherry Blossom viewing time, or hanami as it's known in Japan. We didn't' get to experience any Cherry Blossoms but there's always a reason to go back!
Doing our own video shoot!
One of the most famous things about Yoyogi Park are the Yoyogi Park Rockabilly dancers. Mainly men, these dancers dressed in 1950's rockabilly style, perform every Sunday at the Harajaku entrance to the park. Unfortunately, we didn't get to see them perform (another reason to go back!) as it was to be later in the day but we did watch them set up a little bit.
I'm so unhappy that I missed this! You can watch a short youtube video of them performing here. Hopefully this works but if not you can search for them on youtube - there's lots of videos out there with them performing.
I like to visit a city park when I travel - and it was especially nice here in Tokyo. To get out of the urban jungle - so to speak - and see some nature. But I also like seeing the slice of daily life going on that you don't get to see behind the closed doors of city apartment buildings.
Have you ever been to Yoyogi Park?
I'm linking up with : Travel Photo Thursday at Budget Travelers Sandbox, Weekend Travel Inspiration at Reflections Enroute, The Weekly Postcard at Travel Notes & Beyond and Weekend Wanderlust at A Brit and A Southerner!