Bell Tower, Candy Alley and Warehouse District
Kawagoe is a historical town, which retains the culture and atmosphere of the Edo Period. There’s lots to see and eat making this a definite must visit. Kawagoe is also known as ‘Little Edo’ thanks to the Kurazukuri (Clay Walled Warehouse Style) buildings in the main street, of which most are traditional home decoration shops and restaurants.
Another famous, historical spot is the Bell Tower which chimes four times a day (6:00, 12:00, 15:00 and 18:00). The tower was destroyed during the Great Kawagoe Fire in 1893 and was rebuilt in 1894.
One of my favorite spots in Kawagoe is Candy Alley (Kashiya Yokocho, 菓子屋横丁), a street close to the Warehouse District, filled with about 22 traditional Japanese candy shops. They sell all different kinds of candy, rice crackers, cakes and sweets often made of red bean paste and sweet potato. The street is decorated with candy strings in the tree branches, which creates a bit of magical atmosphere. The shops are opened daily between 10:00 – 17:00.
Kawagoe is located 30 minutes from central Tokyo and makes a great day trip. From Ikebukuro you can take the Tobu Tojo Line and from Shinjuku the Seibu Shinjuku Line or the JR Kawagoe Line to Kawagoe Station. The sightseeing spots are all in walking distance of Kawagoe station and are easy to find if you follow the signs.
For more information about tourist sights and access, visit their official website (in English): http://www.koedo.or.jp/foreign/english/