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Spectacular Snaps! Top Spots to See Tokyo's Skyline

Spectacular Snaps! Top Spots to See Tokyo's Skyline

Update: 11 September 2018

Photographers can find many great spots from which they can take photos of the Tokyo skyline. The unique architecture, sprawling parks and bays, and neon lights of our fair city can turn any shot into a great memento of your trip.
With so many to choose from, it’s easy to make a list of great Tokyo skyline spots. But where’s the fun in that? Instead, take our skyline speed challenge and visit several great viewpoints in one day! Within 24 hours, you can see (and take pictures of) Tokyo from many angles.

Tokyo Skytree

Tokyo Skytree

The Skytree is the tallest and best-known spot to see the Tokyo skyline. So why go there first? Well, because it’s the tallest and best-known spot. The lines here are going to get long throughout the day, and you want to avoid that if you’re going to complete your one-day tour.

Start at 7:15 a.m. at Shibuya Station. You’re going get on the Tokyo Metro Hanzōmon Line, platform 2 and get off at Oshiage Station (32 minutes). From Oshiage Station, it is a five-minute walk to the Skytree from exit B3. You will arrive just as the observation decks open at 8:00 a.m.

Start at 7:15 a.m. at Shibuya Station. You’re going get on the Tokyo Metro Hanzōmon Line, platform 2 and get off at Oshiage Station (32 minutes). From Oshiage Station, it is a five-minute walk to the Skytree from exit B3. You will arrive just as the observation decks open at 8:00 a.m.

Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building Observatory

Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building Observatory

Once you’re finished at the Skytree, make the five-minute walk back to Oshiage Station and take the Toei Asakusa Line to Daimon Station (15 minutes). There, you will change trains to the Toei Ōedo Line bound for Tochomae and get off at Tochomae Station (18 minutes). From here, it is a three-minute walk to the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building.
This building serves as the headquarters of the Tokyo city government. To get to the Observation Decks, use the Observatory Elevator on the 1st Floor of Main Building No. 1.

Admission fee: Free
Hours of Operation: North tower (9:30 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.), South Tower (9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., until 11:00 p.m. when North tower is closed). Closed December 29th to January 3rd (except January 1st). The North Observation Deck is closed on the 2nd and 4th Mondays each month, and the South Observation Deck is closed on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday each month.
Height: Observation Decks at 202 meters (45th floor).
Views: Mt. Fuji in the southwest, no high-rise buildings to the west. Skyscrapers in the east and a great view of Shinjuku.

Tokyo City View and Sky Deck at Mori Tower

Tokyo City View and Sky Deck at Mori Tower

From the Dentsu Building, take the 4-minute walk back to Shiodome Station and take the Toei Ōedo Line for Daimon/Roppongi from platform 2 to Roppongi Station (9 minutes). Roppongi Hills and Mori Tower are a four-minute walk from Exit 3. The Mori Tower Sky Deck is one of the few observation decks open to sky. Besides the observatory, Mori Tower houses an art museum, stores, restaurants and more.

Admission fee: 1800 yen for adults (500 yen for Sky Deck), 1200 yen for students (300 yen for Sky Deck)
Hours of Operation: Monday to Thursday, Sunday and the National Holiday (10:00 - 23:00, Last entry at 22:30) Friday, Saturday, and the day before the National Holiday (10:00 - 25:00, Last entry at 24:00).
Height: 238 meters.
Views: Aoyama Cemetery to the northwest, Aoyama Park to the west, and Tokyo Tower to the east.

  • Mori Art Museum
    • Address 6-10-1, Roppongi Roppongi Hills forest tower 53F, Minato-ku, Tokyo, 106-6153
      View Map
    • Nearest Station Roppongi Station (Tokyo Metro Hibiya Line / Toei Oedo Line)
    • Phone Number 03-5777-8600

Tokyo Tower

Tokyo Tower

From Mori Tower, go back to Roppongi Station and take the Toei Ōedo Line back towards Tochomae to Akabanebashi Station (3 minutes). Tokyo Tower is a 5-minute walk from the station’s Akabanebashi Gate. Tokyo Tower was built for television and radio broadcast services in 1957, and opened to the public in 1958. It is currently the second tallest structure in Japan after the Skytree, and has two observatories.

Admission fee: 1420 yen for adults (Main + Special Observatory), or 900 yen for adults (Main Observatory only).
Hours of Operation: Monday to Sunday, 9:00 - 23:00 (Last entry at 22:30).
Height: Main observatory at 150m, Special observatory at 250m.
Views: Rainbow Bridge and Shiba Park to the southeast, and Zojo-ji to the east..

Odaiba Seaside Park

Odaiba Seaside Park

From Tokyo Tower, go back to Akabanebashi Station’s platform 1 and take the Toei Ōedo Line back towards Tochomae to Shiodome Station (4 minutes). Change to the Yurikamome headed for Toyosu, and get off at Odaiba-kaihinkoen Station (12 minutes). Odaiba Seaside Park is a 3-minute walk away.

Odaiba Seaside Park offers a view of the (video-game famous) Rainbow Bridge and a replica of the Statue of Liberty. You can walk along the beach and take in the fantastic view of Tokyo across the water.

Admission fee: Free admission
Hours of Operation: Open 24 hours
Views: Tokyo skyline with the Rainbow Bridge to the northwest, and the Fuji TV Building and Joypolis to the southeast.

  • Odaiba Seaside Park
    お台場海浜公園
    • Address 1-4-1, Daiba, Minato-ku, Tokyo

The World Trade Center

The World Trade Center

From Odaiba-kaihinkoen Station, take the Yurikamome to Shimbashi Station (14 minutes), then switch to the JR Yamanote Line at platform 4 going towards Shinagawa. Get off at Hamamatsucho Station (2 minutes) for the World Trade Center.

The World Trade Center is the grand finale of our one-day Tokyo skyline tour. From here, a photographer can get the best views of Tokyo Bay and much of the city as well. The best time to visit is after sunset, when the city lights turn on. Be forewarned—the observation deck gets crowded during sunsets, so be sure to get there early and get a spot! The World Trade Center also has many restaurants and shops, which makes for a good way to cap off a day spent exploring the skyline.

Admission fee: 620 yen for adults
Hours of Operation: Monday through Sunday, 10:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. (Last entry at 8:00 p.m.)
Height: 158 meters tall, 152 meters at the observation deck (40th floor)

And there you have it! There are many places from where you can see the Tokyo skyline, but this route will help you find all the major ones in a single day. Have fun, shop, see the sights, and don’t forget to charge your camera!

*This information is from the time of this article's publication.

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