Ashikaga is a city in Tochigi Prefecture, Japan. It is 80 km (50 mi) north of Tokyo.
As of April 1, 2011, the city has an estimated population of 153,766, with a household number of 59,219, and a density of 864.73 persons per km². The total area is 177.82 km².
The city was founded on January 1, 1921.During the Heian Period, Ashikaga was developed by Minamoto no Yoshikuni, whose descendants later became the Ashikaga clan.
Ashikaga has long been noted for its textile industry, but in recent years it has also become known as an industrial and commercial city producing various aluminum, machine metal works and products.Ashikaga is home to Ashikaga Kogyō Daigaku Fuzoku High School for boys, as well as Ashikaga Tanki Daigaku Fuzoku High School for girls. These are notable due to a 19-year standing foreign exchange program with Elk Grove High School, in Elk Grove Village, Illinois. The city was also recently named a special area for English education by the Japanese government, as all the junior high schools have native English-speaking ALTs, one hailing from Ashikaga's sister City, Springfield, United States.The Watarase River Fireworks display, which takes places on the first Saturday of August attracts thousands of people from around the Kantō area.The Watarase River Fireworks display, which takes places on the first Saturday of August attracts thousands of people from around the Kantō area.
The foothills on the outskirts of town are home to Coco Farm & Winery. Founded around 1950, the vineyards are tended by adults with special needs and staff members living in community. During the third weekend of November, a harvest festival is held with live music and wine-tasting. Thousands of visitors attend every year.