Visit of the General Public to the Palace for His Majesty's Birthday

The visit of the General Public to the Imperial Palace grounds on February 23, 2020 to celebrate His Majesty the Emperor’s Birthday was canceled due to various reasons. Both the Appearances in the morning and the Signing of the Visitors’ Book in the afternoon were canceled.

Photo Description
Visit of the General Public to the Palace
for His Majesty's Birthday
(Photo:Imperial Household Agency)
  • Date:
    • February 23, 2020
  • Entrance:
    • Main Gate (Nijubashi)
      (9:30 a.m. - 11:20 a.m.)
  • Exits:
    • Sakashita-mon Gate, Kikyo-mon Gate, Ote-mon Gate, Hirakawa-mon Gate, Kitahanebashi-mon Gate.
  • Appearances:
    • His Majesty the Emperor together with Her Majesty the Empress, Their Imperial Highnesses Crown Prince and Crown Princess Akishino, Her Imperial Highness Princess Mako of Akishino and Her Imperial Highness Princess Kako of Akishino.
    • First Appearance: Around 10:20 a.m.
    • Second Appearance: Around 11:00 a.m.
    • Third Appearance: Around 11:40 a.m.
Signing of the Greeting Book
(Photo:Imperial Household Agency)

Signing of the Greeting Book

On the occasion of the Emperor's Birthday, the Greeting Book is open for the well-wishers from 0:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. in front of the Imperial Household Agency Building.

The Greeting Book will be duly forwarded to its highest destination as the expression of your warm congratulations.

The well-wishers are requested to write their full name and the name of prefecture (country of origin: in case of foreigner) on the Greeting Book. The stationery is prepared at the desk.

  • Entrance:
    • Sakashita-mon Gate
  • Exits:
    • Kikyo-mon Gate, Ote-mon Gate, Hirakawa-mon Gate, Kitahanebashi-mon Gate.
    • (Exit Gates Close at 4:00 p.m.)

The entrance gate for the visitors will close at 11:20 a.m. in the morning and at 3:30 p.m. in the afternoon. Please arrive well in advance of closing times, as there will be baggage inspection at the gate. It may take more than 1 hour to get to the Main Gate from the Front Plaza of Imperial Palace due to a large turnout. Latecomers for the Imperial appearances in the morning may have to be referred to the Visitors’ books in the afternoon. We ask for your cooperation with the guidance issued on the spot in view of the closing times.

The visit of the General Public to the Imperial Palace grounds on February 23, 2020 to celebrate His Majesty the Emperor’s Birthday will be conducted as follows:

  • 1.Appearances in the morning

    His Majesty the Emperor together with Her Majesty the Empress, Their Imperial Highnesses Crown Prince and Crown Princess Akishino, Her Imperial Highness Princess Mako of Akishino and Her Imperial Highness Princess Kako of Akishino will appear at the balcony of the Chowa-Den Hall to greet the visitors gathered in the Totei (East Court) three times in the morning.

    • First Appearance: Around 10:20 a.m.
    • Second Appearance: Around 11:00 a.m.
    • Third Appearance: Around 11:40 a.m.

    Entrance Gate

    • Main Gate (Nijubashi)(9:30 a.m. - 11:20 a.m.)

    Exit Gates:

    • Sakashita-mon Gate, Kikyo-mon Gate, Ote-mon Gate, Hirakawa-mon Gate,Kitahanebashi-mon Gate.
  • 2.Visitors’ books in the afternoon

    Because of the celebration functions inside the Palace, there will be no Imperial appearance at the balcony for the public in the afternoon. The visitors will be welcome to enter their full names (and their prefecture or country) in a congratulatory book, or to leave their name cards at a specially designated tent equipped with writing tools in front of the Imperial Household Agency building from 12:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

    Entrance Gate:

    • Sakashita-mon Gate

    Exit Gates:

    • Kikyo-mon Gate, Ote-mon Gate, Hirakawa-mon Gate, Kitahanebashi-mon Gate.
    • (Exit Gates close at 4:00 p.m.)
  • 3.The East Gardens of the Imperial Palace are closed on the day. However the departing visitors may walk through the East Gardens and exit from Ote-mon Gate, Hirakawa-mon Gate or Kitahanebashi-mon Gate.

  • 4. A large number of visitors are expected to come to the Imperial Palace grounds on the Emperor's Birthday. Please bear in mind the following points:
    • (1)The entrance gate for the visitors will close at 11:20 a.m. in the morning and at 3:30 p.m. in the afternoon. Please arrive well in advance of closing times, as there will be baggage inspection at the gate. It may take more than 1 hour to get to the Main Gate from the Front Plaza of Imperial Palace due to a large turnout. Latecomers for the Imperial appearances in the morning may have to be referred to the Visitors’ books in the afternoon. We ask for your cooperation with the guidance issued on the spot in view of the closing times.
    • (2)Visitors will to enter the Imperial Palace grounds in lines, to be formed before passing the entrance gate: visitors are asked to stay in line and not to hold up procession.
    • (3)In order to lessen congestion and prevent possible danger, bag inspection and security check will be conducted. Please keep your personal belongings to a minimum by leaving your carry-on bags and other large items in station lockers, etc. Your cooperation is appreciated.
    • (4)As there are slopes inside the Imperial Palace grounds, please be careful not to trip in the crowd, especially, when wearing high-heeled shoes or sandals.
    • (5)Entrance is not allowed from gates designated as exits neither in the morning nor in the afternoon.
  • 5.Entrance is not allowed at the gate for those who:

    bring an animal with them (except for guide dogs);

    carry dangerous objects, flagstaffs, small unmanned aircrafts (drones), large items of luggage that could impede the progress of the event or any other item that could harm or disturb other people; or

    behave in any other ways deemed harmful to the management of the event.

  • 6.Visitors who conduct any of the following acts in the Imperial Palace grounds may be asked to leave the site:
    • (1)Enter into off-limit zones;
    • (2)Pose a risk of fire, such as smoking;
    • (3)Destroy or remove Palace facilities and other objects;
    • (4)Use photo tools, such as selfie sticks, tripods, and stepladders, which can disturb other people, or take photograph or movie for commercial purposes;
    • (5)Organize an assembly or stage a demonstration;
    • (6)Affix a poster, or distribute or disperse fliers; or
    • (7)Commit any other acts deemed harmful to the management of the event, such as violating order or discipline in the Imperial Palace grounds.
  • 7.Miscellaneous
    • (1)In case of severe weather conditions, members of the Imperial Family might refrain from appearing at the balcony.
    • (2)No parking space is available at the site. As stopping/parking of vehicles is prohibited on the streets around the Imperial Palace grounds, please refrain from parking on the roadside or boarding/alighting from vehicles along the streets. Please use public transportation because parking facilities around the Imperial Palace grounds could be crowded on the day.
    • (3)There are special designated spaces available for wheelchair users.
    • (4)However, there is no rental wheelchair available, so visitors should bring one, if necessary.
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