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The Imperial Palace in Tokyo first opened the doors for ordinary visitors.
The Imperial Palace in Tokyo first opened the doors for ordinary visitors in honor of Emperor Akihito’s 80 anniversary. The film crew of the NHK state television company was allowed to cover this event.
Out of 65 thousand people wishing to see the palace with their own eyes, two groups of 47 people were selected by lottery sampling. First, the group visited the Shunjun-no-ma hall, where state awards and orders are presented. Then the visitors were able to see the most impressive hall of the palace - "Homeiden". Its area is 915 square meters; receptions of the highest state level are held here. The main table, at which the imperial couple and state guests of Japan are located during banquets, and one of the options for the solemn table setting were presented to the attention of visitors.
The excursion was completed by the most historically significant and famous hall "Seiden matsu-no-ma". Here are the ceremony of accession to the throne of Japanese emperors, the approval of the prime minister and the government of Japan by the monarch, and foreign ambassadors present their credentials to the emperor in the same hall. However, visitors were able to inspect the hall from the door without crossing the threshold.
Today, the palace was visited by another group of guests. The second stage of the demonstration of the interior of the palace will be held in October. A set of people who want to see the residence of the emperor with their own eyes will begin in the summer.
Usually, not only the palace itself, but also the vast territory adjacent to it is closed for inspection. Tourists can freely explore only the imperial garden. Ordinary visitors can get to the guarded castle territory and see the palace outside twice a year: on the birthday of Emperor 23 December and 2 January in honor of the New Year. At this time, the monarch and his family appear several times a day on the glassed-in balcony to greet their subjects in the courtyard square.