Nezu Jinja (根津神社) is a Shinto shrine not so far from Ueno or Yanaka and is near Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line Nezu Station. This shrine survived air raids in WWII and retains an Edo-era complex. For details about this shrine, see the article on Nezu Shrine. In spring, the Tsutsuji-matsuri (Azalea Festival) will be held at this shrine.
This shrine is famous for its azalea flowers which date back to the Edo period and bloom from mid-April to early May. During this period, the Tsutsuji-matsuri (つつじまつり), literally meaning "the Azalea Festival," is held, and the garden will be open to the public for 200 yen. Attractions will be performed on weekends and holidays, also.
According to legend, this Shinto was established about 1,900 years ago, but it changed its location twice, and was relocated to the present place in 1706 (most part of the present shrine complex was built on this occasion). Before that, this site used to be the residence of Tokugawa Ienobu (1662-1712), who was later to become the sixth shogun of the Tokugawa Shogunate, and the shrine's azalea garden was founded in those days. Now, there are some 3,000 azalea trees consisting of 100 cultivars in the garden, and blooms from late-April to early May.
Though this festival kicks off from mid-April, there're almost no trees that are blooming at first. Stalls are not set up as well in this period.
Azaleas start flowering from around late April.
You can enjoy the flowers from outside the garden. It's admission free in that case.
It takes 200 yen to get inside the garden. You can enter the garden only in this period of the year. Open 9am - 5:30pm.
Stalls will be set up in the shrine precincts. On weekends and holidays, some more events will be held.
Drum concerts are held during the Golden Week.
Urayasu-no-mai, a kind of Shinto dance, is dedicated to the shrine by local elementary school girls every year.
Many other performances are performed during the Golden Week.