Otaguro Park is beautiful in autumn leaves

While I’ve lived in Suginami over the years, I rarely go to Ogikubo. It’s famous for its ramen and quiet life. Many people might consider it a hub area. People live there and travel to other areas of Tokyo for work. I hardly ever go there. When I do, it is usually to take photographs at Otaguro Park. Every year from late November to early December, its autumn leaves are lit up.

I can only say it is lovely. The ground staff put lights in pieces of bamboo and behind umbrellas. They make sure the red maples get lit too. Like Rikugien Gardens at night, Otaguro becomes a playground of colors. I’m lucky it’s near my house.

The only thing that bothered me was the rule concerning tripods. They are forbidden during this event. Night-long-exposure photography there might be interesting. I’d like to capture the blurred images of people as they walk through the garden.

There was something else. While I was walking around, I glanced at the displays of some people’s smartphones. Their images were very bright. So much in the shadows was revealed. It made me feel a little jealous! But, I have access to Lightroom on my computer. I edit my photos at home.

It’s amazing how much smartphone camera technology has advanced in recent years. The way they can operate in low light is pretty incredible. But for the casual photographer, they are probably enough. Still, I would like to see some printed photographs from them.

If you go to the Otaguro Park night light-up event one day, I recommend going early. And the reason for that is its popularity.  Even before the gates were opened at 5 pm, the line outside was immense. It stretched several hundred meters. There must have been several thousand visitors on Sunday night. Once again, you might be able to avoid them by going on weeknights.

Where is Otaguro Park in Tokyo?

The park is very near Ogikubo Station. Leave from the south exit and walk for about ten minutes. Click here to see it on Google Maps.

What photo gear did I use for these photos?

  • Camera body: Fujifilm X-T3
  • Lens: Fujifilm XF 35mm f/2 R WR

Wrapping up

Otaguro Park is easy to find, and a visit there in autumn, especially at night, is highly recommended. And after you have finished you could always enjoy a drink or dinner at Ogikubo Station. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below.

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