Shibuya, you know you’ve seen this crazy crosswalk in tv and movies.
It’s an iconic location it Tokyo. The shops, fashion, food and entertainment make Shibuya is a must see destination during any trip to Tokyo.
The following lines stop at Shibuya
- Yamanote Line
- Saikyo Line
- Shonan-Shinjuku Line
- Tokyo Metro Ginza Line
- Keio Inokashira Line
- Hanzomon Line
- Fukutoshin Line
- Den-en-toshi Line
- Toyoko Line
After arriving at the station, you’ll want to exit through the Hachiko gate. This exit will bring you out in front of the iconic statue of Hachiko, the Akita dog, known for his dedication to his owner.
The story goes that Hachiko would wait at the station everyday for his owner to return from work. They would walk home together from there. One day his owner passed away before returning to the station. Hachiko continued waiting at the station everyday for the next nine years for his owner to return.
It’s such a sad, yet beautiful story of love and dedication. Today there is a statue of Hachiko at the station, and you can wait with him to meet the people in your life. Not surprisingly this is one of the most popular meeting places in Tokyo.
From here, you need to cross Shibuya intersection. This intersection doesn’t just let one direction go. Once all traffic is notified to stop for pedestrians, the street is flooded with people walking in any direction they want. It is quite a scene to observe from within the torrent of people. I’m always amazed more people don’t run into each other.
I’d recommend going straight to Center Gai, a pedestrian street flanked on both sides with shops and areas to explore. You will discover restaurants, boutiques, bars and karaoke. At night, the streets light up and people gather to socialize.
After exploring Center Gai, I’d suggest finding either a local cafe or the Starbucks near the intersection. From here you can observe the streets through the observation windows. After you’ve had your coffee, it’s time to go shopping. Shibuya has an abundance of department stores that must be visited.
Start off with either Shibuya 109 or Seibu. It is hard to go wrong with either one of these department stores. Shibuya 109 is geared strictly towards women’s fashion with 10 floors and 120 shops. There is also a Shibuya 109 Men nearby for men’s fashion. Seibu is a department store option that has a little bit of everything in one location.
Lastly, visit Shibuya Loft. Loft in Japan is a lifestyle store which includes home decor and accessories. The Shibuya location spans 7 floors. This is an amazing place to pick up a souvenir, I picked up a glass soy dispenser I use everyday. There is something for everyone at Loft. I’ve always been impressed with design of their goods.
So we’ve explored a little bit of Shibuya but really this is only a sliver of all it has to offer. Because of this, you could easily spend a day or two. So, prioritize your sights because Tokyo is huge!