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Todoroki Ravine Park stretches a little more than half a mile in the southern part of Setagaya ward in Tokyo.

Todoroki Ravine Park stretches a little more than half a mile in the southern part of Setagaya ward in Tokyo. (Juan King/Stars and Stripes)

A 20-minute train ride from central Tokyo, the secluded Todoroki Valley in the southern part of Setagaya ward is a peaceful marvel away from the bustling city.

Todoroki Ravine Park stretches a little more than half a mile. My family and I walked it in over 30 minutes, including sightseeing stops.

The Yazawa River runs through the Todoroki Valley in Setagaya, Tokyo.

The Yazawa River runs through the Todoroki Valley in Setagaya, Tokyo. (Juan King/Stars and Stripes)

The Yazawa River runs through the ravine on its way to the larger Tama River. Small waterfalls roll off the steep sides of the valley, making it even more picturesque.

A modest number of visitors were on the path, making for an easy stroll along the trail paved with wooden planks and stone. Old and young alike were visiting, some there for a little exercise. On a walkway just 2 feet wide along a drop of about 8 feet into the ravine, we squeezed past other walkers passing in the opposite direction.

Todoroki Ravine Park in Setagaya, Tokyo, is known for its bamboo trees and other greenery.

Todoroki Ravine Park in Setagaya, Tokyo, is known for its bamboo trees and other greenery. (Juan King/Stars and Stripes)

Buddhist statues line the path to a small bridge we crossed to reach the Fudo-no-Taki waterfall. Two dragon heads protruding from a stone wall had water spouting from their mouths. Farther along a long, stone stairway we arrived at the Todoroki Fudosan Temple.

It was a calorie-burning climb up the slick, uneven stairs, though there were guard rails to assist us. Be careful climbing up with small children. At the top you’ll find a beautiful view over the valley and can take in the colorful details of the temple, which was established around 1100.

A 20-minute train ride from central Tokyo, the secluded Todoroki Valley in the southern part of Setagaya ward is a peaceful marvel away from the bustling city.

A 20-minute train ride from central Tokyo, the secluded Todoroki Valley in the southern part of Setagaya ward is a peaceful marvel away from the bustling city. (Juan King/Stars and Stripes)

The temple includes four ancient tombs, originating in the 7th century. The pathway leading to Todoroki Valley Tunnel Tomb No. 3 is near an ice cream shop. Next to that you can sample green tea at the small tearoom called Setsugekka.

There is outdoor seating in this area, so you can rest and enjoy some quiet time. Picnicking is also allowed in the family area there.

Todoroki Fudosan Temple in Tokyo's Setagaya ward was established around 1100.

Todoroki Fudosan Temple in Tokyo's Setagaya ward was established around 1100. (Juan King/Stars and Stripes)

After a few moments of observation and photo taking, we went back down the stairway and exited through the main entrance that leads directly to Todoroki Station.

Todoroki Ravine Park stretches a little more than half a mile in the southern part of Setagaya ward in Tokyo.

Todoroki Ravine Park stretches a little more than half a mile in the southern part of Setagaya ward in Tokyo. (Juan King/Stars and Stripes)

Location: 1-22-26 Todoroki, Setagaya city, Tokyo 158-0082

Directions: A few minutes’ walk from Todoroki Station in Setagaya, Tokyo.

Hours: Always open

Costs: Free

Food: There is a small ice cream café and a tea shop located up near the Todoroki Fudosan Temple.

Information: 03-3704-4972

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Juan King is a reporter, photographer and web editor at Yokota Air Base, Japan. He joined the U.S. Navy in 2004 and has been assigned to Stars and Stripes since 2021. His previous assignments have taken him to Afghanistan, Bahrain, Guam and Japan.

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