The Imperial Palace
The Imperial Palace was built in 1590 during the reign of Ieyasu, the first shogun from the Tokugawa dynasty. For centuries, the palace was growing, steadily becoming the biggest palace in the world. The inner courtyard of the palace is open to the public only two days a year - on January 2, the New Year day, and on December 23, the birthday of the Emperor. Do not forget to pay attention to Nijibashi, a double stone arch bridge, which once was the main entrance to the palace. During the Second World War, the palace was destroyed, but later, in 1968, it was rebuilt. The walls and moats that remained from the Edo castle of the Tokugawa shogun period were integrated into the design of the present palace. Currently, the royal family still lives in the western part of the palace.
The East Garden of the Imperial Palace is the location of an old castle of the Edo period. Many years ago the castle belonged to shoguns. Nowadays, this is the only part of the Imperial Palace that is open to public. Otemon Gates serve as the entrance to the beautiful, gently laid out garden. Centuries ago these gates were the entrance to the castle. The garden, which is partially surrounded by the former moat, is the place where inner walls and gatehouses of the castle are located. Besides this, the territory of the garden is home to a tea house, a pond and a waterfall.
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