In the Western area of Nishi Ward, aka the hydrangea town, Saitama City there are dozens of hydrangea spots. According to this article I found tonight the residents of Nishi Ward elected the hydrangea as the ward flower in 2011. Reportedly since then they have promoting hydrangea in the ward. I also found some material from 2015 when Nishi Ward ran a PR Campaign to try and promote Nishi Ward as a “hydrangea town”. I don’t know if the idea stuck. Until I started zealously exploring Nishi Ward during the pandemic, I personally didn’t have an image of it being an hydrangea town. But after years of uncovering hydrangea spots in the area, I feel that the description of “hydrangea town” is merited…
Previously I introduced Sashiogi Hikawa Shrine as an hydrangea shrine in Saitama City. But there is at least one other: Adachi Shrine. Also, located in the western area of Nishi Ward. The hydrangea at Adachi Shrine tend to bloom later than at Sashiogi Hikawa Shrine. In fact, of all the hydrangea spots I’ve been to in Nishi Ward, I think Adachi Shrine’s are the latest overall. Today, there were very few blooming, but in nearby Aobaen they are in full bloom and at Sashiogi Shrine there were more in bloom than not.
The Adachi shrine, in the Iida area of Nishi Ward, was founded during the Heian period (794 – 1185AD). Adachi Shrine has an hydrangea garden on one side of the precincts. Azalea also grow in the garden. The haiden (front building) is natural wood and the honden (main sanctuary) is beautiful red. Both create a beautiful backdrop, as does the roof of the water font and a smaller shrine on the precincts.
In the past, Adachi Shrine had a two day hydrangea festival during the period of bloom. It was usually the week after the one at Sashiogi Hikawa Shrine, around the end of June. There is currently no information available for a festival at the shrine in 2023.
There are literally dozens of places to see hydrangea in Nishi Ward. In the Western area of the ward, I particularly like the religious locations for hydrangea viewing. Sashiogi Hikawa Shrine, Aobaen and Adachi Shrine make a nice trifecta. If you are travelling by car, they are all very close to each other, with Aobaen in the center. On foot, it would be a long walk to do all three, particularly as Adachi Shrine is quite a distance to the nearest station, but not impossible either.
Event: Hydrangea season at Adachi Shrine 足立神社のあじさい
Hours: the precincts are open 24 hours, but there is no lighting at night and the parking lot maybe closed off.
Cost: A donation in the prayer box
Venue: Adachi Shrine, 54 Iida, Nishi Ward, Saitama, 331-0058. View on Google Maps.
Parking is very limited at the shrine. There is only parking for about four or five cars (the spots aren’t marked out, so if people don’t park compactly only four cars can fit). Unfortunately, the shrine is also quite far from the nearest station. It would be about a 45 minute walk from Omiya Station. Its a very direct walk though, straight from the West exit of the station for about 3.5 kilometers. Its also about a 45 minute walk from Nishi Omiya station.
No official website, but there is a web page on Saitama shrine directory.