The Palace Gardens can only be viewed by a Guided Tour. It is open to residents and tourists who attend a designated area outside the gates, several hours prior to the tour time. It can take many hours to wait and you could miss out. Not what I expected in such a well run and ordered place like Tokyo. I am told that the Palace has many rules and that it has been done this way for a long time, so the process is unlikely to change. It is easy to see that the Palace lives in a different century. You only see the gardens in the tour, not the inside of the Palace. Good luck to you, if you have seen it. I guess I never will. The only thing you can surely do is walk around the outside, next to the moat. It seemed possible to have a quiet walk around the walkways, until you find out that it is a popular jogging track, with joggers generally running anticlockwise around the Palace walls. Careful, not just joggers also bicycles, prams, delivery vehicles, repair men and roadworks. I think that the occupants of the Palace are happy that they have large walls to keep the noise out. Nevertheless, a visit to the Palace and a walk around the moat is highly recommended.
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