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Ōedo Line: Kachidoki

In Japanese History, Travel in Japan on June 23, 2015 at 3:00 pm

勝どき
Kachidoki (victory war cry)

Kachidoki Bridge crossing the mouth of the Sumida River. (Click the picture to read more about this photo.)

Kachidoki Bridge crossing the mouth of the Sumida River.
(Click the picture to read more about this photo.)

Nearby Tsukishima was home to the Naval Academy of the Japanese Empire. A memorial was built – and still stands today – near an old ferry crossing. The memorial was dedicated to the Japanese victory at the Siege of Port Arthur, which was probably the most dramatic battle of the Russo-Japanese War (February 1904 – September 1905). Later a bridge replaced the ferry crossing and was called 勝鬨橋 Kachidoki-bashi Kachidoki Bridge. The area’s name is derived from the “war cry monument” and the subsequent bridge still bears that name.

You can see the monument when the ferry service was. The area is a mix of modern high rise apartments and gritty, wooden 下町 shitamachi (low city) homes. One famous high rise is Kachidoki View Tower which offers 2 viewing platforms for residents (including a party room) and boasts a view of Tōkyō Bay, Tōkyō Tower, and Tōkyō Skytree. You also have access to Tsukuda Island. Tsukuda is where the story of all of the massive man made islands in Tōkyō Bay begins. The area still retains a lot of its Edo appeal and is worth the trip for history geeks and photographers.

tsukudajima1Unless you want to go on an epic walking tour of the Tsukishima area, this station might not be high on your to-do-list. If you’re a real JapanThis! nerd, this might actually be a great place to start your walk through history. Just be sure to have GPS, you’ll be doing a lot of walking. The area is primarily residential today (it didn’t even exist in the Edo Period). But access to the monument that is the area’s namesake is limited to this station. Even if you make the trek all the way out to the end of the island, 晴海 Harumi “clear seas,” your view of the bay will still be obstructed by so much reclaimed land and development. If you want to see the open bay, your best bet is to take a bus or taxi to 若洲海浜公園 Wakasu Kaihin Kōen Wakasu Seaside Park. It’s probably the farthest place you can go in Tōkyō Bay without trespassing on shipyards and the places where they ship out Tōkyō’s garbage to some magical place that no one knows about.

Choose your battles wisely.

The history of this area is a bit complex, so if you want to know more about it, I recommend you check my earlier, much more detailed articles:

Wakasu Park is probably furthest accessible point of Tokyo Bay.

Wakasu Park is probably furthest accessible point of Tokyo Bay.

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This article is part of an ongoing series that starts here.

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