Thursday, March 10, 2016

Tokyo Travel Diaries: Tokyo Skytree

During our visit to Japan, hubby and I were contemplating whether to visit the Tokyo Tower or the Skytree. In the end, we chose the Skytree since it was newer and there seemed to be more things to see and do within the building (like a shopping complex and an aquarium). Anyway, the Tokyo Skytree is the tallest building in Japan and the second tallest structure in the world at the time of its completion with a height of 634 meters.

We went on a Monday and we got there at around 10:30am. I was afraid there were going to be long lines, but surprisingly there were none! Anyway, tickets are sold on the 4th floor for the first observation deck. If there are a lot of people, you can get a Skytree Fast Ticket which is a special type of ticket available only to foreign tourists (and Japanese people accompanying foreign tourists). They are more expensive than regular tickets, but allow holders to skip the line and ascend the tower without waiting time. The tickets are sold at a separate ticket counter also on the 4th floor. A passport is required at the time of purchase.

Tickets for the first observatory cost 2060 yen each

Then we rode a very fast elevator up to the Tembo Deck, the first observation deck, which was 350 meters high.

inside the elevator
First Observation Deck
floor guide

You can get tickets for the second observation deck (450 meters high) here for an additional 1030 yen. But we didn't go anymore since we felt the view would more or less be the same.

love this interactive screen where you can zoom in on specific places around the city
view from the top
Skytree Cafe
photoshoot with anime dolls
have I told you I HATE heights? ;p
Skytree's shadow upon the city

It was also the Christmas season during the time we went, so there were lovely decorations everywhere.

There was even the cutest Christmas market outdoors. We felt like we were transported to Europe or something. So pretty!

Afterwards, we had lunch in one of the many restaurants found in the building.

Then there were still so many other things to see like displays and exhibits for free in the different floors.

super cool science and technology stuff

And this was the time Star Wars was just going to be shown so there were a lot of merchandise and displays as well.

my very own life-sized Kylo Ren ;p

We spent about 4 hours exploring, but I think you could very well spend the entire day here with the different attractions. We originally wanted to see the aquarium too, but we were already rushing since we still had to go to Asakusa after. But definitely a good experience and a great place!

Get There and Around
The entrance to the Tokyo Skytree is on the 4th floor of Tokyo Skytree Town, which spans the area between Tokyo Skytree Station (formerly known as Narihirabashi Station) on the Tobu Isesaki Line, and Oshiage Station on the Asakusa Subway Line, Hanzomon Subway Line and Keisei Oshiage Line. Alternatively, it is a 20 minute walk across the Sumida River from Asakusa.

Tokyo Skytree can also be reached by direct buses from Tokyo Station (30 minutes, 520 yen one way, 2 buses/hour), Ueno Station (30 minutes, 220 yen, 4 buses/hour), Tokyo Disney Resort (45-55 minutes, 720 yen, 1 bus/hour) and Haneda Airport (50-70 minutes, 920 yen, 1 bus/hour).

Hours and Fees
HOURS: 8:00 to 22:00 (entry until 21:00)
CLOSED: No closing days
First observatory: 2060 yen (regular), 2820 yen (fast ticket)
Second observatory: additional 1030 yen
An additional 510 yen service fee is charged for time specific advance reservations.

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