Tag Archives: playgrounds

Kamiya Park Play&Sports ground + Skateboarding | Kounosu

Ever wondered where you can skateboard legally and safely in Saitama? One place I know of is Kamiya Park in Kounosu, which has a designated skateboard park. This multi-use park has a number of sporting facilities, it even has a stadium. The best part: it also has a brand new playground and a wading river which are almost completed. Although, the park is still under construction you can use the playground freely.

The skateboarding area costs money, but for residents of Kounosu it is only 200 yen for school aged children and adults and 100 yen for preschoolers. For people who do not reside in Kounosu it costs 400 yen for adults and students and 200 yen for preschoolers. They have skateboards and helmets to rent for an additional charge. They have skateboard lessons available too. It is open from 8am all year round (except New Years holidays) until 4pm in the winter and until 6pm in the summer.  The official website for the skate park (Japanese only): http://kamiyaskatepark.com/

Other sporting facilities in the park include a stadium, baseball pitch, tennis courts, a soccer pitch, street basketball court and a multi-purpose ground. The baseball pitch, soccer pitch, multi-purpose ground and tennis courts need to be booked and there is a small fee. General facilities include a club house,  free parking, walking paths, a lawn, toilets,  vending machines, a wading river and a playground. The playground is beside the skate park and wading river.

The playground is suited to smaller children. There is something in the playground to engage my younger kids aged 5, 3 and 1. However, although my 6 year old enjoyed it the first and only time he has been, I am not sure he would find the playground as enjoyable a second time. It is best suited to preschoolers.

Information

Park Website: (Japanese only) http://www.kamiya-sk.ecnet.jp/index.html#
Skatepark Website: (Japanese only) http://kamiyaskatepark.com/

Access
Address: 707 Kamiya, Kounosu, Saitama 365-0027

Preschool playgrounds in Japan

In my experience of Gunma, Ibaraki and Saitama, most preschools in suburbia Japan, have some form of outdoor play area. Most of them have at least a slide and/or swings, and some are a full on playground with a combination of equipment.  Thankfully, our preschool is one of the latter.

The main piece of equipment in my kid’s preschool’s playground was designed and made by Dino World in Fukui prefecture, hundreds of kilometres away. It is a combination piece for kids in the preschool age range. The Dino World brand is part of the Dinosaur museum in Fukui, which is said to be one of the best dinosaur museums in the world. We have yet to visit, but at least a little part of the museum has come to us. 🙂

Apart from the Dino World combination unit, there are swings, monkey bars, horizontal bars, tunnels and a sand pit. Hours of fun guaranteed.

Has anyone a post like this for another country? I’d love to see what preschools are like around the world.  What are the playgrounds like in your kid’s preschools?

Preschool playground

Yoshimi Town Friendship Athletic Ground

We hadn’t visited Yoshimi Town Friendship Athletic Ground for a while, so I was surprised to discover some of the kids’ favourite equipment in this park has been removed. They have put in one new slide, but I am hoping that they are going to add even more new equipment.  This is what happened in Heisei No Mori park about 6 years ago; they removed an old wooden playground and replaced it with a colourful combination playground.

REMOVED EQUIPMENT

REMAINING EQUIPMENT

NEW EQUIPMENT

New slide in the cornered off playground

SEASONAL FACILITIES

In the summer the paddling pool and wading river in Yoshimi Athletic Grounds are quite nice, although I don’t think it is as well maintained as other parks.

Wading River (out of season) in Yoshimi Sports Park
Wading River (out of season) in Yoshimi Athletic Ground
Paddling pool (out of season) in Yoshimi Sports Park
Paddling pool (out of season) in Yoshimi Athletic Ground

For older children and adults there are some sports facilities, including the running track. For us the main incentive to visit Yoshimi has always been more about the wildlife than the playground equipment, so all was not lost today. We call Yoshimi Athletic Ground the “frog park”, because of the amount of frogs we have caught (and released) there.  We also regularly find praying mantis, grasshoppers, beetles… even a snake once. While 6yo searched for insects, 4yo and 3yo enjoyed picking up acorns and pine cones. This park is great for acorn collecting in particular. The pine cones were a bonus.

WILDLIFE!

Lots of wildlife in Yoshimi Sports Park
Lots of wildlife in Yoshimi Athletic Ground
Picking up acorns and pine cones in Yoshimi park
Picking up acorns and pine cones in Yoshimi Athletic Ground

While Yoshimi Athletic Ground might not be the best park around for small kids, it’s not too bad either. Another draw for us is that it is close to other points of interest, so we can make a day out of our visit to Yoshimi. Less than 5 minutes in the car is Ichigo No Sato, a  roadside station, that has a farmer’s market, stalls and booths, some of which are eateries, an Udon restaurant, a bakery and a lovely little playground. Between both parks is a strawberry picking area. And not far off you can enjoy the unusual 100 Caves of Yoshimi sightseeing spot, which is across the road from Iwamuro Kannon.

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More attractions in Yoshimi

Playground at Ichigo no Sato | Yoshimi

100 Caves of Yoshimi, Saitama

Iwamuro Kannon | YOSHIMI

Strawberry Picking in Yoshimi, Saitama