The area known to local ex-pats as the “East End” begins in busy Shinsakae and follows the Higashiyama subway line through Imaike, Chikusa, Ikeshita, Kakuozan and Motoyama to Higashiyama Park. The city thins out as you travel east, making way for peaceful residential areas and tree-lined streets. This is one of the most verdant and liveable – not to mention affluent – parts of Nagoya.
The Higashiyama Park [Higashiyama Koen] complex includes the Zoo, Botanical Gardens and Sky Tower, and makes for a fun day out with friends or family. Just up the road, Heiwa Park (MAP)is a nice getaway from the hustle and bustle of the city. the park has some great walking and biking trails.
The area is also home to some of Nagoya’s smaller, but still historically significant, temples and shrines. Toganji in Motoyama was originally built in the 16th century, and houses Nagoya’s Big Buddha statue. Nittaiji Temple, in Kakuozan, has an attractive five-storey pagoda and grounds for strolling, and holds a popular outdoor market on the 21st of each month.
Another interesting spot to visit, the Furukawa Art Museum, houses the intriguing Tamesaburo Memorial Museum, a restored residence, featuring a beautiful Japanese garden that drops into a wooded hillside. The landscaping was supervised by master landscape artist Takayuki Inoue and is replete with small streams and tiny teahouses.
Imaike is the best place to go for entertainment. The long-running Tokuzo hosts concerts by well-known and underground artists, both Japanese and international; The Bottom Line is frequented by veteran jazz, blues and world music acts; up-and-coming (and/or terminally obscure) acts generally end up at Huck Finn, near Daiei. Cinema buffs will enjoy the arthouse movie theaters around the station. Clubbers should head to Club Mago or Club Buddha, both in Shinsakae.
There are a number of friendly hangouts in the area, catering to foreign and Japanese residents.The warmly romantic Kakuozan Bar [Kakuozan Exit#2] mixes the traditional with open air ambience, In Shinsakae. Desperados offers some truly mouth-watering Mexican grub.