Bell of hope at marigold hill Honjo City Saitama Prefecture north of Tokyo near bullet train waseda

Marigolds, night illumination, Moss phlox, sunflowers and other seasonal blooms at the scenic Marigold Hill in Honjo City, Northern Saitama.

Marigold Hill (no Oka)

The eponymous marigold of marigold hill Honjo

Marigold no Oka, aka Marigold Hill, is a small park in Honjo City. Like really small. You can walk around the circumference of the park in five minutes. However, the attraction of it is in its seasonal blooms and illumination (winter). The seasonal flower field is about 4000 m². It is a hill it can be seen for miles around. Thus, the seasonal blooms look particularly picturesque. Moreover, it has beautiful trees right in the middle of the park that offset the blooms. The park is named for the marigold that grow there in autumn.

Bell of hope at marigold hill Honjo City Saitama Prefecture north of Tokyo near bullet train waseda

The other main feature of the park is the “Bell of Hope”. There is no playground. However, there are toilets and two vending machines. There are some picnic benches and benches in the park. Unless you were picnicking at the park, you wouldn’t need a lot of time here. It is a really lovely place to picnic though, with a view of the flowers and a view of Mt Akagi and Mt Haruna in Gunma on a clear day. There is a shopping center across the road with a Beisia where you can buy bento, sandwiches and a choice of take away food.

Seasonal Blooms at Marigold Hill

  • March – Cherry blossoms
  • Golden Week – Moss Phlox
  • June – Hydrangea
  • July / August – Sunflowers
  • October /November – Marigold
  • Winter – Night illumination
hydrangea at marigold hill
Some hydrangea at Marigold Hill in Honjo City, Saitama Prefecture

More photos and information for the Marigold and the Moss Phlox below:


Approximately 11,000 of the eponymous flower bloom in Autumn. Normally, you can see them in October and November. However, like almost every flower in Saitama Prefecture in 2021, they were early to bloom and are already at peak and have been since the end of September. From what I can tell, that is about 3 weeks earlier than normal. Thus it is likely, just like the moss phlox earlier in the year, they will be gone much earlier than normal too and you probably won’t be able to see them in November in 2021.

Moss Phlox / Shibazakura

The other flower I have kind-of-seen at the park is moss phlox! Like the marigold they were weeks earlier than normal and by the time I visited at the end of April, they were pretty much gone. There were just two small sections of moss phlox (shibazakura) left. It was right before Golden week when I visited in spring and normally prime viewing is bang smack in the middle of Golden Week. This would make a good alternative to the famous (and always crowded) moss phlox aka shibazakura of Hitsujiyama Park as it is off the beaten path. However, the day I visited for the pink phlox there were literally hundreds of people there. But they were altogether though on some sort of field trip!:

bell of hope marigold hill
Can you see all the people!?

Go Go Halloween

For one year only, in 2021, Kita-Kanto’s largest Halloween event “GO GO Halloween” was held at Marigold Hill. This year, 2022, its back at its pre-pandemic location: Ginza Shopping Street near Honjo Station:

Night illumination

Popular and pretty Night illumination in Northern Saitama by the shinkansen Waseda Station in Honjo
From the official event post in 2021

One of Saitama’s top ten locations for night illumination, Marigold Hill’s night illumination will start on Saturday November 26th 2022. On the first night only the illumination will be switched on at 4.30 pm. There will be some kitchen cars (food vans / trucks) in the park for the occasion. They will also have a hand bell performance and they will count down to lights on. After that, the illumination is on daily from 5 to 10 pm until Sunday January 29th 2023. They use approximately 60,000 lights in the display. This is a free event. Official event post here.

Marigold Hill Information

Address:1-13 Wasedanomori, Honjo, Saitama 367-0030
Hours:24 hours, but the car park is only open from 9 am to 5 pm except during winter illumination.
Online:Official web page on the Honjo City website


The park is about 2.5 kilometers from the Honjo-Kodama Interchange of the Kanetsu Expressway. There is free parking for 36 cars. The car park is at the top of the hill, not the bottom where Google directs you to! The two spaces at the bottom of the hill are priority parking for people with lower mobility.

JR Takasaki Line’s Honjo station is about a 30 minute walk away (three kilometers). The Joetsu Shinkansen Honjo Waseda station is right by the park.


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