All Places

  • Kyoto Tower

    Kyoto Tower offers views of the ancient capital that are worth seeing and adaptations to the old building have made it relatively wheelchair accessible. Background Information Kyoto Tower was planned to be constructed and completed in time for the 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, but was completed closer to the Read more [...]

  • Kappabashi Street

    Kappabashi Street is the largest street devoted to restaurant supplies in Japan and a good place to buy food samples, knives and lacquer ware. While not every store is accessible, many are partly or fully wheelchair accessible. Background Information Located between Ueno and Asakusa, Kappabashi Street (or Kappabashi Dougu Street) Read more [...]

  • Kameido Tenjin Shrine

    Kameido Tenjin Shrine is hidden gem in Tokyo with a beautiful wisteria festival and is mostly accessible. BACKGROUND INFORMATION Komeido Tenjin Shrine is dedicated to Sugawara no Michizane. A political and intellectual during the Heian period, Michizane was demoted and expelled from Kyoto when Emperor Daigo came to the thrown. Read more [...]

  • Yasaka Shrine

    Yasaka Shrine, or Yasaka Jinja, is one of Kyoto’s most famous shrines and home of the Gion Matsuri. While it doesn’t appear wheelchair accessible at first glance, it is possible to enter via a rear entrance. BACKGROUND INFORMATION Yasaka Shrine, once known as Gion Shrine, is one of Kyoto’s most Read more [...]

  • Samurai Museum

    The Samurai Museum is a small but popular museum located in Shinjuku’s Kabukicho area. The museum offers a glimpse into the armor and weaponry used by the samurai through tours aimed at foreign visitors. Unfortunately, it is not very wheelchair accessible. General Information The Samurai Museum is located in Kabukicho Read more [...]

  • Nakano Broadway

    Nakano Broadway is a paradise for lovers of anime and manga that is less visited than the busy streets of Akihabara, but no less rich in otaku culture. While being part of a shopping mall benefits the accessibility, the aging building and small stores certainly have accessibility challenges. Background Information Read more [...]

  • Arashiyama Bamboo Grove

    Smooth, paved paths through the Arashiyama Bamboo Grove ensures that those in wheelchairs or other mobility aides can also enjoy the ancient atmosphere of Kyoto. BACKGROUND INFORMATION Situated in the foothills off the main tourist area in Arashiyama, this famous bamboo grove is one of Kyoto’s most visited locations. The Read more [...]

  • Nishiki Market

    Nishiki Market is a great place to find seasonal foods and Kyoto’s local specialties. The narrow street has much to see and lots of flavors, but it is also very crowded and can be difficult to move around for those with mobility disabilities. General Information Known as “Kyoto’s Kitchen”, Nishiki Market specializes Read more [...]

  • Philosopher’s Walk

    The Philosophers Walk, or Philosophers Path, is a heavily photographed pedestrian path located in Kyoto. This pedestrian path is lined with cherry trees and located along the side of a canal that runs between Nanzenji and Ginkakuji. The name of the Philosophers Walk was taken directly from an influential Japanese Read more [...]

  • Harajuku

    Sandwiched between Shinjuku and Shibuya, Harajuku is a great place to see youth culture up close.  Named after the area around Harakuju Station, and brought to many people’s attention by Gwen Stafani’s Harajuku Girls backup dancers, Harajuku not only offers the latest in youth fashion, but is also close to Read more [...]

  • Kenninji Temple

    Kenninji is one of the five great Zen temples of Kyoto but does not have much to offer for wheelchair users or others with mobility difficulties. BACKGROUND INFORMATION Located just south of the Gion geisha district, Kenninji temple serves as one of the head temples of the Rinzai Sect of Read more [...]

  • Gion District

    Gion in Kyoto is a great place to catch a glimpse of a geisha and see traditional architecture. While the streets and many shops are accessible, the majority of tea houses and traditional restaurants are inaccessible to those in wheelchairs. BACKGROUND INFORMATION Gion, located around Shijo Avenue between Yasaka Shrine Read more [...]

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    Toyosu Fish Market

    Toyosu Market is the largest wholesale fish and seafood market in the world and is fully wheelchair accessible. However, walking distances may be challenging for those who tire easily. Background Information The Toyosu Market took over the role of the main wholesale fish market in October 2018 after the inner Read more [...]

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    Roppongi

    Roppongi’s mixture of art galleries, nightlife and corporate offices make it an interesting place to visit, and while Roppongi Hills and Tokyo Midtown are accessible, much of the nightlife is not. Background Information The area known as Roppongi, or “six trees”, was first mentioned in the late 1600s. The origin Read more [...]

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    Osaka Castle

    Osaka Castle is a popular attraction in Osaka with an fascinating history. The castle keep is wheelchair accessible, but slow walkers may find the distances a challenge. Background Information Osaka Castle is one of Japan’s most famous landmarks as it played a major role in the final days of the Read more [...]

  • Kagurazaka

    Known for its traditional atmosphere and haute cuisine, Kagurazaka offers a side of Tokyo often missed by tourists.  Visitors with mobility challenges should be ready to deal with a large hill and many inaccessible restaurants. Background Information Kagurazaka has a long history and became very prosperous during the Edo Period.  Read more [...]

  • Yasukuni Shrine

    Yasukuni Shrine is home to Tokyo’s representative cherry tree and is mostly wheelchair accessible. Background Information Yasukuni Shrine was established in 1869 by Emperor Meiji to commemorate those who died in service of Japan during the Boshin War of 1868–1869 helping to build the foundation for a peaceful Japan. Those Read more [...]

  • Nanzenji Temple

    Nanzenji Temple is a very beautiful temple complex which is home to many historically significant structures and gardens. However it is only partially wheelchair accessible. Background Information There’s a lot to see in the Nanzenji area situated in the eastern foothills of Kyoto’s Higashiyama Mountains. Several subtemples and gardens are Read more [...]

  • Sanjusangendo

    Sanjusangendo and the 1000 golden statues of Kannon, the Buddhist goddess of mercy and compassion, is fully wheelchair accessible and not to be missed. Background Information Sanjusangendo is hands down one of the most impressive sights in Kyoto, and it’s unbelievable and unfortunate how many tourists skip this one. Luckily, Read more [...]

  • Fushimi Inari Shrine

    Fushimi Inari Shrine is an iconic site in Kyoto with thousands of torii gates that wind up a forested mountain. With a bit of effort, visitors in wheelchairs can see the first stretch of the path and the first two shrines. Background Information Founded in the early 700s and covering Read more [...]

  • Kawagoe

    Visiting Kawagoe makes for a great day trip from Tokyo where you can enjoy a glimpse of the Edo Period. Many of the attractions in the area are wheelchair accessible. Background Information Located under an hour by train from the Tokyo area, Kawagoe can make an excellent trip out of Read more [...]

  • Sengakuji Temple

    Sengakuji Temple is famous as the final resting place of the 47 Ronin who gave their lives to protect their lord’s honor. The grave site and museum are wheelchair accessible. Background Information Located near Shinagawa Station, Sengakuji is a small temple that was originally built by the Shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu Read more [...]

  • Ise Grand Shrine

    Japan’s most sacred site, the Ise Grand Shrine, is located about 1.5 hours south of Nagoya and a beautiful place to visit. While a few key locations are not wheelchair accessible, the shrine has put an effort into helping visitors with disabilities through accessible route maps and rental wheelchairs. Background Read more [...]

  • Daikanyama

    Daikanyama is often referred to as Tokyo’s Brooklyn and features high-end fashion boutiques and trendy cafes. Unfortunately, a large majority of the smaller shops are not wheelchair accessible. Background Information Part of Shibuya Ward, Daikanyama fits in well with other high-end retail neighborhoods like the nearby Nakameguro and Ebisu. The Read more [...]

  • Kasai Rinkai Park

    Kasai Rinkai Park is the second largest park in Tokyo and will be one of the venues for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics. It is a great, accessible option for enjoying nature within Tokyo. Background Information Located in the Edogawa Ward of Tokyo, Kasai Rinkai Park is the second-largest Read more [...]

  • Zenyoji Temple

    Zenyoji Temple is a small temple in Tokyo that is home to Yogo no Matsu,  Japan’s widest pine tree – and it is incredibly wheelchair accessible. Background Information Zenyoji is a Shingon Buddhist temple which was founded in 1527 and located in Tokyo’s Edogawa ward. The main hall, is dedicated Read more [...]

  • Nagoya Castle

    Nagoya Castle is the prominent symbol of Nagoya and a popular tourist attraction. The castle keep is being reconstructed, but Honmaru Palace and the grounds are a fully accessible and a great way to spend an afternoon. Background Information Nagoya Castle and surrounding Honmaru Palace and grounds are one of Read more [...]

  • Hirosaki Castle

    Home to over 2500 cherry blossom trees and listed as one of Japan’s top 100 castles, Hirosaki Castle and the surrounding Hirosaki Park are mostly wheelchair accessible and make for a memorable visit to Japan’s north. Background Information Hirosaki Castle was completed in 1611 but in 1627, the 5-story tenshu Read more [...]

  • Hanazono Shrine

    Literally surrounded by the tall buildings that make up Shinjuku, Hanazono Shrine is a great example of the ancient and modern mixing in Japan. While the main hall is not accessible, the grounds are easy to see for wheelchair users. Background Information Hanazono Shrine was constructed in the Edo period Read more [...]

  • Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine

    Tsuragaoka Hachimangu is one of Kamakura’s defining landmarks, and while it is mostly not wheelchair accessible, it is still worth seeing. Background Information Tsurugaoka Hachimangu is the most important Shinto shrine in the city of Kamakura, and is at the geographical and cultural center of the city of Kamakura. It Read more [...]

  • Enoshima

    Located just off the coast near Kamakura, Enoshima is a small island that offers good seafood and views of Mount Fuji but very limited wheelchair accessibility. Background Information Believed to have created by Benten – goddess of good fortune, wealth, music and knowledge – before subduing a five headed dragon Read more [...]

  • Shirotori Garden

    While Nagoya is well-known as the industrial center of Japan, it also has a number of cultural attractions. The traditional Shirotori Garden is wheelchair accessible and offers some picturesque views and a chance to relax near the central part of the city. BACKGROUND INFORMATION Shirotori Garden is a Japanese-style garden Read more [...]

  • Zojoji Temple

      Zojoji Temple is one of Tokyo’s most important temples. While it may not look wheelchair accessible, a large part of the temple grounds can be accessed by wheelchair users and those with mobility needs. BACKGROUND INFORMATION Zojoji Temple (Formally San’en-zan Zōjō-ji 三縁山増上寺) is a Buddhist temple located in the Read more [...]

  • Tsukiji Honganji Temple

    Located next to Tsukiji Fish Market, Tsukiji Honganji Temple is a completely wheelchair accessible temple that blends many different types of architectural styles. BACKGROUND INFORMATION The original Tsukiji Honganji Temple was built in 1617 near Asakusa and was first known as Edo-Asakusa Gobo. After burning down in a great fire Read more [...]

  • Heian Shrine

    Heian Shrine is a popular stop for visitors to Kyoto and has some beautiful architecture, however, it is not very accessible to those in wheelchairs or with other mobility challenges. BACKGROUND INFORMATION Despite the name, Heian Shrine does not date back to the Heian Period (794-1185). The shrine was built Read more [...]

  • MRJ Museum and Aichi Museum of Flight

    The MRJ Museum opened in 2017 near Nagoya Airport and is one of three airplane facilities in the world that offer factory tours.  Once on the property, the tour is completely wheelchair accessible. General Information The museum is located on the property of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries where they are currently Read more [...]

  • SCMaglev and Railway Park

    A great place to spend an afternoon out of the hot sun or rain. JR (Japan Rail) has brought many trains out of storage to show the history of train travel in Japan over the last century, right up to the Maglev train. The scale of the museum is outstanding Read more [...]

  • Shinjuku Gyoen

    Shinjuku Gyoen is one of Tokyo’s biggest parks and a great place to enjoy the yearly cherry blossoms. Though there are some accessibility issues to be aware of, the park has created some excellent resources for people with disabilities. Background Information Located just a short walk from Shinjuku Station, Shinjuku Read more [...]

  • Tokyo National Museum

    The Tokyo National Museum is not only Japan’s largest museum, it is also incredibly wheelchair accessible. With over 110,000 items on display it is a great place to learn about the history of Japan. Background Information The Tokyo National Museum is the largest museum in Japan an one of the Read more [...]

  • Hakone

    The Hakone Round Course is a popular day trip from Tokyo that allows travelers to enjoy Lake Ashi, lush forest mountains, and a fantastic view of Mount Fuji on clear days. Despite the mountainous location, the Hakone Round Course itself is wheelchair accessible. However, deviating from the course is very Read more [...]

  • Kiyosumi Garden

    Kiyosumi Garden (or Kiyosumi Teien) is a traditional Japanese garden located in Tokyo. While beautiful, less than half of the garden is wheelchair accessible. Background Information Kiyosumi Garden is a tradional garden in Tokyo designed with classical principles for strolling along paths around a central pond. Originally part of the Read more [...]

  • 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art

    21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art in Kanazawa is fully wheelchair accessible and a great example of the artistic culture of Kanazawa. Background Information Located in the center of Kanazawa, near Kenrokuen Garden, the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art is focused on works produced since 1980 that “propose new Read more [...]

  • D. T. Suzuki Museum

    The D. T. Suzuki Museum is intended to let visitors learn about the philosophy of D. T. Suzuki and engage in their own contemplation as they move through the wings and gardens. Though a bit far from the bus stop, it is wheelchair accessible. Background Information Daisetsu Teitaro Suzuki (1870 Read more [...]

  • Higashi Chaya District

    Higashi Chaya District is the largest teahouse district in Kanazawa and has many beautiful buildings to enjoy. However, they are mostly inaccessible to wheelchair users due to steps. Background Information In the Edo period, teahouses were exclusive restaurants where geisha would perform songs and dances for guests, usually in designated districts Read more [...]

  • Kenrokuen Garden

    Kenrokuen Garden in Kanazawa is considered one of the Three Great Gardens of Japan and is conveniently located next to Kanazawa Castle. While it is a great place to enjoy a Japanese garden, there certainly are limitations for those with wheelchairs or other mobility challenges. Background Information Kenrokuen, “Six Attributes Read more [...]

  • Kanazawa Castle

    Kanazawa Castle is one of Japan’s many famous Edo-era castles and is mostly accessible to visitors with disabilities. Background Information During the Sengoku Period, over 250 fuedal lords ruled over the many regional domains across Japan. In the 1500s, Maeda Toshie, the fourth son of a minor samurai family entered Read more [...]

  • The Ghibli Museum

    The Ghibli Museum is a must-see for fans of Japan’s most famous animation studio, Studio Ghibli. Exhibits on the animation process, famous productions, and a small theater are all contained within the quaint museum which is mostly wheelchair accessible. BACKGROUND INFORMATION Opened on October 1, 2001, the Ghibli Museum is Read more [...]

  • Ginza

    Though it was formerly rejected by foreigners for being “too Western,” the high-end shopping center of Ginza is now a popular place to visit. with its expensive department buildings and flagship stores. The shopping experience is mostly accessible to those with disabilities. BACKGROUND INFORMATION Originally a swamp, the Ginza area was Read more [...]

  • Tsukiji Fish Market

      Tsukiji Fish Market, was biggest wholesale fish and seafood market in the world, is full of energy and delicious food. However, it can be overwhelming and possibly dangerous for those with disabilities. GENERAL INFORMATION The first market in Tokyo was established by Tokugawa Ieyasu (1543 – 1616) during the Read more [...]

  • Kinkakuji (Golden Pavilion)

    Kinkakuji, or the Golden Pavilion, is one of the top stops for anyone visiting Kyoto, and one of Japan’s most popular buildings. Originally a shogun’s estate, it is now a Buddhist temple and is part of the Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto UNESCO World Heritage site.  The site near the Read more [...]

  • Universal Studios Japan

    Universal Studios Japan is one of the most popular attractions in Osaka and offers excitement, famous characters, rides, shows and more. While it is fairly accessible in general, some of the most popular rides – including Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey – are not accessible to guests with mobility difficulties. GENERAL Read more [...]

  • Kiyomizu-dera

    Kiyomizu-dera, officially Otowa-san Kiyomizu-dera, is a famous Buddhist temple in eastern Kyoto and is often featured in tourist information due to its unique wooden stage that juts out from the main temple building. The temple is part of the Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto UNESCO World Heritage site. While there Read more [...]

  • Rikugien Gardens

    Rikugien Garden is ranked as one of the most beautiful traditional gardens in Tokyo. It represents the best of Edo Period gardens with a large pond, man-made hills, and tea houses for contemplation. Unfortunately, much of it is inaccessible to wheelchair users – including the most scenic spots. BACKGROUND Rikugien’s name Read more [...]

  • Ueno Park

    Ueno Park is a public park in the Ueno district of Tokyo.  The park is famous for its many museums and art galleries, as well as for being a very popular location for cherry blossom viewing in the spring.  The atmosphere is very upbeat and lively with many street performers, Read more [...]

  • Odaiba

    Odaiba is a shopping and leisure area built atop artificial islands in Tokyo Bay. It has great wheelchair accessibility including many accessible toilets and a wheelchair-friendly monorail. Getting from area to area can be a bit difficult if you tire easily, but it is definitely a place to unwind and have Read more [...]

  • Kyoto Imperial Palace

    Once the residence of the Emperor of Japan, Kyoto Imperial Palace and the surrounding park are now open to the public and is a great way for visitors to enjoy nature and history in one place. While wheelchair accessible toilets are available, the gravel paths and large distances may cause a lot of Read more [...]

  • Ginkakuji (Silver Pavilion)

    Ginkakuji, or the Silver Pavilion, is nestled in Kyoto’s eastern mountains and is a popular stop for many visitors to Japan’s ancient capital. While the site has done the best with what it has, a part of the temple grounds are not wheelchair accessible.  The moss garden, sand gardens, and Read more [...]

  • Nijo Castle

    Nijo Castle is one of the historic sites listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Site Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto.  The facility has done an excellent job of maintaining the original buildings while working to provide accessibility to those in wheelchairs and other disabilities. General Information In 1601, Tokugawa Ieyasu, Read more [...]

  • Tokyo Tower

    The distinct shape and bright colors of Tokyo Tower make it stand out in Tokyo’s cluttered skyline whether night or day.  Originally a broadcasting tower, Tokyo Tower is also a tourist attraction and a symbol of Japan’s post-war resurgence.  Unfortunately, being built in the 1950s, it is not as wheelchair Read more [...]

  • Shinjuku

    Shinjuku is an economic hub of Tokyo and sees more than 2 million passengers go through Shinjuku Station every day. This means that there are hundreds of restaurants, bars, and shops to explore and enjoy.  It is also home to Tokyo’s largest entertainment(/red light) district, Kabukicho.  Many hotels are located Read more [...]

  • Shibuya

    Known as a center for youth fashion and culture, Shibuya is a popular shopping and entertainment area that is full of lights, shopping, and crowds. As Shibuya is a large area, accessibility can of course vary with location. Many shops are accessible, but some are not. However, despite the crowds, Read more [...]

  • Hama Rikyu Gardens

    The Hama Rikyu Gardens is a public park located at the mouth of the Sumida River on Tokyo Bay. Though nestled amongst the skyscrapers of the Shiodome district, Hama Rikyu Gardens is a quiet oasis where visitors can enjoy nature and tea in a sculpted Japanese garden. While much of Read more [...]

  • Tokyo Skytree

    Opening to the public in May 2012, Tokyo Skytree is the world’s tallest tower and second tallest building. With its excellent accessibility features for disabled guests, it is also home to the world’s highest accessible toilets! Background Tokyo Skytree is a broadcasting, restaurant, and observation tower in Sumida, Tokyo, and Read more [...]

  • Akihabara

    Akihabara, or Akiba, has gained worldwide recognition as the heart of Japan’s high-tech and otaku (ie nerd/geek) culture. Almost everyone who comes to Japan wants to visit it to shop, find anime/manga, go to a maid cafe, or see AKB 48. However exciting it is, it is not terribly wheelchair Read more [...]

  • Meiji Shrine

    The Meiji Shrine, or Meiji Jingu, is an essential stop for anyone visiting Japan.  It is a great way to see some Japanese culture, enjoy a walk through the woods, and – if lucky – see a traditional Japanese wedding.  The accessibility is a bit of a mixed bag, though.  Read more [...]

  • Kyu-Yasuda Teien Gardens

    Located a stone’s throw from both the Sumo Museum and the Edo-Tokyo Musum, the Kyu-Yasuda Teien Gardens can help you continue your history kick in Tokyo. Unfortunately, if you are in a wheelchair, you can only enjoy half of it. But, that is enough likely. Check out the review below. Read more [...]

  • Sumo Museum

    The Sumo Museum is wheelchair accessible, and can be an interesting place to pop into while visiting the Edo-Tokyo Museum next door – but, being very small, is not something that should be a destination on its own. The museum is located on the first floor of the Ryogoku Kokugikan Read more [...]

  • Edo-Tokyo Museum

    Though settlements have existed in the Tokyo area since 3000 BCE, things really started in the 12th century CE when Edo Shigenaga, the military governor of a large Kanto province, erected his castle in present day Tokyo, calling it Edojuku.  Celebrating Tokyo’s long past, the Edo-Tokyo Museum is an excellent Read more [...]

  • The National Art Center, Tokyo

    Feel like taking in something highbrow in Tokyo?  Why not some art! The National Art Center (Kokuritsu Shin-Bijutsukan), Tokyo is an art museum located in the upscale Roppongi district.  Opening on January 21, 2007, it is a unique and innovative art exhibition facility: instead of maintaining a permanent collection, it Read more [...]

  • Imperial Palace

    After the end of the shogunate and the Meiji Restoration, the shogun and inhabitants of Edo castle were required to leave. The emperor arrived from Kyoto at the Edo Castle to make it to his new residence and renamed it to Tokei Castle (at this time Tokyo had also been Read more [...]

  • Nippon Budokan & Kitanomaru Park

    Live at the Budokan! While the Budokan is famous abroad for hosting acts like the Beatles, Cheap Trick, and Bob Dylan, it was originaly built to house the judo events for the 1964 Summer Olympics and is officially called the Nippon Budokan (“Japan Martial Arts Hall”). Though many opposed the Read more [...]

  • Sensoji Temple

    Sensoji (Sensō-ji) is an ancient Buddhist temple located in Tokyo’s cultural capital, Asakusa. Not only is Sensoji Tokyo’s oldest temple, it is one of the most significant.  The area is very wheelchair accessible and definitely a must-visit! The temple is dedicated to the bodhisattva Kannon (Goddess of mercy and compassion). Read more [...]