I thought I’d write a few practical posts here when possible of good places and parks for people with children around Kanto to go for a bit of a day out, since I’m kind of in that market at the moment.
First up: Satoyama Koen is a very pleasant park in Chigasaki, primarily aimed at children. Even though it’s ‘in Chigasaki’ it’s not too close to the station – more of a car or bike journey. There seems to be ample parking for both.
As you can see from the link, it’s quite spacious. The main attractions are: a huge roller slide, a smaller but still long roller slide for smaller children, a stream and pool for children to paddle, all concreted and quite clean. There’s also the usual jungle gyms and a large bouncy mountain. It’s quite spacious, meaning there’s plenty of walking space, woodland and open grass. Frisbee, ball sports and bicycle practice seem popular. When we went the ages of the children was roughly up to ten years old and everyone was very friendly, so everyone got a go on most things.
As the slides are rollers, many people brought bits of cardboard to slide on, which was a good idea. My well padded posterior was burning halfway down, so we invested 500yen in a plastic tray sold for the purpose at the nearby park centre.
Having a picnic seemed popular in the summer, but the only food on site is ice cream and snacks from vending machines, so it’s a walk to a convenience store if you didn’t bring anything. The same vending machines sell a selection of drinks (including Mountain Dew!), though many may not appeal to children ironically. As with all vending machines, these will be rotated by season.
It’s all free to enter, being a public run park, and no real downside, and the slide really is quite addictive for adults and children alike.