Sunday, December 7, 2008


basic information

Shibuya is one of the twenty-three city wards of Tokyo, but often refers to just the popular shopping and entertainment area around Shibuya Station.

Shibuya is one of Tokyo's most colorful and busy districts and birthplace to many of Japan's fashion and entertainment trends. Most of the area's large department and fashion stores belong to either Tokyu or Seibu, two competing corporations.

A prominent landmark of Shibuya is the large intersection in front of the station (Hachiko Exit), which is heavily decorated by neon advertisements and giant video screens and gets crossed by amazingly large crowds of pedestrians each time the traffic light turns green.

Below is a map and list of some of Shibuya's other major attractions:

Points of Interest:

Hachiko Statue
A statue of a loyal dog named Hachiko. According to a famous story, the dog waited for his master every day in front of Shibuya Station, and continued to do so for years even after his master had passed away. It is one of Tokyo's most popular meeting points.
Tobacco and Salt Museum
Introducing the history of tobacco and salt in Japan and throughout the world. Information in English is limited. The museum is operated by Japan Tobacco (JT), whose predecessor used to monopolize the production and sale of tobacco and salt in Japan.
Open daily 10:00 to 18:00. Closed Mondays and from December 29 to January 3 (if Monday is a national holiday the museum is open Monday and closed the following Tuesday). Admission: 100 yen.
Electric Power Museum (Denryokukan)
This museum by the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) introduces various aspects of electric energy, such as the process of power generation and the role of electricity in society and everyday life. Information in English is limited.
Open daily 10:00 to 18:00. Closed Wednesdays and New Year's Holidays (if Wednesday is a national holiday, the museum is open Wednesday and closed the following Thursday). Admission: free.
NHK Studiopark
NHK Studiopark is a part of the NHK Broadcasting Center, which is open to the public. It gives visitors a chance to look behind the scenes of television broadcasting, including the production of a live program on most days.
Open daily 10:00 to 18:00. Closed on the third Monday of each month, except in August and December. If the third Monday is a national holiday then the Studiopark is open that Monday and instead closed the following Tuesday. Closed from December 25-31. Admission: 200 yen.
National Yoyogi Stadium
Built for the 1964 Tokyo Olympics by renowned architect Tange Kenzo, the stadium hosted the olympic swimming competitions. It is now also being used for ice skating and volleyball competitions, concerts and various other events.
Love Hotel Hill
This area of Shibuya has a high concentration of love hotels, which offer couples a private room for a 2-3 hour "rest" during the day (usually around 5000 Yen) or an overnight "stay" (usually around 10000 Yen).
Located directly next to the Tokyu department store (main store), Bunkamura, lit. "culture village", consists of a concert hall, a theater, two cinemas, a museum with constantly changing exhibitions, and a few shops and restaurants.

Famous Streets:

Center Gai
The birthplace of many Japanese fashion trends, Center Gai is a busy pedestrian zone lined by stores, boutiques, game centers, night clubs and restaurants.
Koen Dori
Koen Dori, lit. "Park Street", is a popular shopping street leading from the Marui department store to Yoyogi Park. It was named after Parco department store (parco is Italian for park) and the fact that the street leads to Yoyogi Park.
Spain Slope
Spain Slope (Supeinzaka) is a narrow, approximately 100 meter long pedestrian street with stairs leading up the slope to the Parco department store. It is lined by boutiques, cafes and restaurants, and was nicknamed for resembling a Spanish street scene.

Tokyu Affiliated Shopping:

There are two Tokyu department stores in Shibuya: the main store with ten floors is located a 5-10 minute walk northwest of the station, while the Shibuya Station branch with twelve floors sits on top of the station.
Main store open daily 11:00 to 20:00 (upper floors until 19:00, restaurants until 22:30). Shibuya Station store open daily 10:00 to 21:00 (Sundays and holidays until 20:00, restaurants until 22:30).
Shibuya 109
Shibuya 109 is a trend setting fashion complex for young women with more than one hundred boutiques on ten floors. Usually pronounced "Shibuya ichi maru kyu", the complex's name can also be read as "Shibuya to kyu", identifying the complex as part of the Tokyu Group.
Open daily 10:00 to 21:00 (restaurants from 11:00 to 22:30). Closed New Year's Day.
Shibuya Mark City
Shibuya Mark City is a small city within the city, located just next to JR Shibuya Station. It consists of a wide range of stores and restaurants, the Shibuya Excel Hotel Tokyu, office space, a bus terminal and the terminal station of the Keio Inokashira Line.
Opening hours vary by shop. Most open daily 10:00 to 21:00. Restaurants open daily 11:00 to 23:00.
Tokyu Hands
Promoted as "Creative Life Store", Tokyu Hands has everything from do-it-yourself, interior, hobby, crafts, outdoors to stationery and more. The Shibuya store spans eight floors.
Open daily from 10:00 to 20:30.

Seibu Affiliated Shopping:

The Shibuya branch of the Seibu department store chain consists of nine floors, featuring mainly fashion goods and some fashion boutiques. Restaurants can be found on the top and bottom floors.
Open daily 10:00 to 20:00 (Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays until 21:00). Occasional closing days.
Loft is Seibu's answer to Tokyu Hands, also offering a large array of products related to interior, hobby, crafts and gifts, but with a slightly less strong emphasis on do-it-yourself. The Loft Shibuya branch consists of seven floors.
Open daily from 10:00 to 21:00 (until 20:00 on Sundays and public holidays). Occasional closing days.
Parco is a shopping complex with an emphasis on fashion. The complex consists of numerous buildings in the Shibuya area: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Quattro, Zero Gate and more.
Open daily 10:00 to 21:00 (from 11:00 in case of some annex buildings). Restaurants open 11:00 to midnight. Occasional closing days.

Any advice or questions? Voice them in the forum!

how to get there

Shibuya Station is one of Tokyo's busiest stations. You can get there by JR Yamanote Line, JR Saikyo Line, JR Shonan Shinjuku Line, Hanzomon Subway Line, Ginza Subway Line, Tokyu Toyoko Line, Tokyu Den-Entoshi Line and Keio Inokashira Line.

Orientation in Tokyo

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