Flea market at the controversial
By Denis Plamondon
Every Sunday is flea market day at Yasukuni Shrine. The location continues to attract many visitors despite its controversy, and numerous vendors benefit by exhibiting their old and rare items under the shade of cherry trees.
*You will find second hand kimonos for really cheap – about 1000 yen – but you can also pay a substantial price for a couple of crystal glasses. This is a good place to acquire collection items.
You just need to sharpen your eyes and discriminate the valuable from the usual rubbish otherwise you can easily be trapped with a variety of not so great articles. Besides the Yasukuni Shrine, you can also visit the War Museum with historical artifacts.
This flea market is small and rarely advertised. In the vicinity, there is a nice park, the Kitanomaru Park, northwest of the Imperial Palace. The nearest station is Kudanshita on the Tozai line. (Tokyo metro map).
Here’s a link for flea and antique markets in Tokyo and it’s surroundings. Second link for flea markets in Tokyo and Yokohama. *
The controversy surrounding Yasukuni Shrine has arisen with frequent visits by Japanese Prime Ministers who come to pay their respects to the soldiers who died for the nation during the wars. At first glance, one can think that it’s absolutely normal for government officials to honor the soldiers who gave their life to the nation. Some neighboring countries to Japan though, perceive such a ritual as an insult since so many of their own citizens were the victims of many of these soldiers. Of the 2,466,000 men and women enshrined in the Yasukuni Shrine, some 1,068 have been convicted of war crimes by a post World War II court. I suggest you read the article in the Sacred Destination Website for supplementary information.