Chidorigafuchi Moat

Chidorigafuchi Moat is famous for its cherry trees. It is one of the most beautiful cherry-blossom-viewing spots in the city as well as a scenic and relaxing spot year-round.

This natural moat played a role in the decision to build Edo Castle in this location. Its high, sloped banks and proximity to Edo (Tokyo) Bay made for good defense and a convenient location.

Nowadays the moat is a recreational attraction. Some 140 cherry trees line the 700-meter-long Chidorigafuchi Ryokudo greenway beside the moat, creating a tunnel of blooms in early spring.

A variety of cherry trees flourish here, but the most abundant is Somei-Yoshino (Prunus × yedoensis), a hybrid species that originated in the city during the late Edo period (1603-1867). It is known for its mass of pale pink blooms and is probably the most widely planted cherry tree in Japan. The moat's name comes from the word for plover (chidori) whose shape it resembles.