Kawagoe - cozy traditional shopping district

Kawagoe (川 越) is an ancient city, which has partially preserved buildings from the Edo period (1603-1867). The city is half an by train from Tokyo, and you can get there by several train lines (see bottom of page). 

First impressions 

The main street consists of a large number of old houses, which still have walls of clay. These houses help to provide a retro-like atmosphere. In the past, Kawagoe was known as "Little Edo". As you walk on the main street, you'll experience hundreds of different fragrances from the many food stalls selling traditional (contemporary as well as original) food and sweets. Especially the sweets "from back then" is quite special and can make the most suckling happy. 
Take a walk down the many side streets where you will find shops, cafes, food, candy and of course - like everywhere else in Japan - temples! 
Kawagoe is easily accessible and can easily be done for a full day or half-day trip. 

As any other place in Japan there are temples to see. I just didn't pay much attention to it, as I was on a somewhat tight schedule.

How to get there?  Use your JR Pass

If you are in Tokyo, you can reach Kawagoe with 3 train lines, either via JR (Japan Rails) or one of the two private lines Tobu and Seibu. 
With JR you can come from Shinjuku Station to Omiaya and then on to Kawagoe Station. This trip is covered by your JR Railpass 
The easiest way to Kawagoe comes with Tobu, across Ikebukuro Station; a walk of about 30 min. It costs around 470 Yen per day. luck, so for a round of 50s you come home and home quite cheaply. Subsequently, it has come to my attention that there is a discount card for tourists called "Kawagoe Discount Pass" - a discount card, thus providing a return trip between Ikebukuro Station and Kawagoe. Wherever you are in Tokyo, it's easy to get to Ikebukuro, where you can start your journey with the discount card. The card provides a discount for some people and other places in Kawagoe - but is only valid on the date of issue. 
With Seibu you can, just like the JR line, come to Kawagoe from Shinjuku station. However, this journey takes about one hour each way.

Roland Vogt