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- Seaside Sightseeing Spot - Odaiba
A popular sightseeing destination featuring lovely open skies and sea breezes, and fun for groups and families too. Great access from both the central city and Haneda Airport. Let's take a walk in Tokyo's new hot spot full of things 'only found here'.
A place full of things "only found here"
Sending out the latest trends from the bright and refreshing Tokyo Bay area, Odaiba is a staple of Tokyo's sightseeing spots. Lined with many huge shopping malls, food courts featuring Tokyo's famous restaurants and more, Odaiba is filled with shops and stores to visit. Like the Gundam Front, where you can experience the world of Gundam, and the Toyota MEGA WEB, where you can see the latest Toyota vehicles, Odaiba is full of attractions that can only be found here. There's so much you'll need more than a day to make the most of everything.
The resort hotel of Odaiba. Since it has good access to both Tokyo city and Haneda airport, it is a great hotel for sightseeing not just for Odaiba but also for Tokyo as well. With views of Rainbow Bridge and Palette Town from the guest rooms, the view at night is especially stunning.
From Haneda Airport it's just 20-40 minutes to the Odaiba Area. It connects you directly with the major spots of Odaiba. Since you can even fit your large suitcases and there are many services scheduled, it's very convenient for transferring from the airport. (There's also a convenient free shuttle bus service that connects the main facilities within Odaiba)
Tokyo's new hot spot features many unique shops
Designed with the concept of a "Theatrical City Space", Odaiba's latest sightseeing attraction opened in April 2012. Featuring a shopping zone lined with brands that are popular both in Japan and overseas, restaurants themed as being 'enjoyable for the five senses' and more, there are a wide variety of unique shops available.
The world of the popular Japanese anime Gundam has been recreated for a unique theme park. A major draw is the "SHOT-G" exhibit, where you can actually have a 3D photo taken of you riding in a 1:1 scale Strike Freedom Gundam. The gift shop is stocked with limited merchandise only available at Gundam Front Tokyo.
At Hello Kitty Japan, there are many original goods and souvenirs only available here. Starting with popular local Kitty goods, there are also freshly baked Hello Kitty treats and more sold at this Sanrio character specialist shop.
The face of Odaiba - Palette Town
Palette Town is Odaiba's representative shopping mall and theme park. Considered to be its symbol is the 115m tall Giant Sky Wheel, from which offers beautiful views that will surely become unforgettable memories of your Odaiba sightseeing experience. It is a large complex that also houses the MEGA WEB, where you can experience the latest of Toyota's technologies, VenusFort, a shopping area that also contains outlet stores and more, so families, couples, everyone can enjoy a complete day here.
See and test drive Toyota's latest models before anywhere else at this car theme park. You can also enjoy experiencing historical cars of the world, Toyota's technologies and more. Popular attractions include 'RIDE ONE', where you can test drive Toyota vehicles within the facility, and 'Personal Mobility' which showcases potential vehicles for the future.
Resembling 17-18th century Europe, VenusFort is a shopping mall that features over 170 restaurants and shops selling fashion, jewelry, accessories and other miscellaneous goods. On the 3rd Floor is Tokyo's first outlet mall, where you can buy products of brands that are popular both in Japan and overseas.
The major attractions of the science museum are the Geo-Cosmos, which is a realistic high resolution display of the Earth shining in space utilizing over 10 million pixels, and the live performances of ASIMO, a robot that can walk on two legs. The hands-on exhibits and friendly staff invite visitors to experience the world of cutting edge science.
Creator of various famous TV programs, Fuji Television is another of Odaiba's representative sightseeing spots. You can take commemorative photos on popular program sets, so try and recreate some famous scenes from the dramas. Doubling as the symbol of Fuji Television, the view from the spherical observation room known as 'Hachitama' is fantastic, and looking out onto the city skyline gives you the feeling of being a celebrity. And, if you're lucky, you'll get to see the filming of TV programs at first hand.
An Edo town recreated as an onsen theme parkOoedo Onsen Monogatari is one of Japan's largest onsen (hot springs) theme parks. You can fully enjoy a natural onsen in Odaiba featuring natural spring water that comes up slowly from 1400m underground, a foot bath that men and women can enjoy together and a sand bath. The central Hirokoji area is a recreation of an Edo era street, lined with restaurants and festivities. Upon entering the facilities, all visitors are lent yukata to wear, fully completing the Edo town image so you can truly feel like you've taken a trip back in time.
On the 4th floor of Odaiba's gateway DECKS Tokyo Beach, a Showa era streetscape appears! With its traditional toys and retro games, older generations will feel nostalgic, while younger generations will feel a sense of discovery. On the weekends, events are held where you can experience story telling, spinning tops and more.
Observing the Odaiba scenery from the water on a Yakatabune (Japanese houseboat) is another sophisticated pastime. Although it's available only on charter in principle, the Yakatabune that leave from Aomi can be boarded with fellow passengers. While savoring culinary delights like tempura, you can enjoy gazing out at Odaiba.
The shrine to Japanese pop culture - Comiket
Located in Odaiba is Tokyo's representative exhibition hall, Tokyo International Exhibition Center (Tokyo Big Sight). Among the many events held, the one that boasts the biggest draw is "Comic Market (Comiket)" which is held twice a year in August and in December, and it's the world's largest market for fan created fiction with tens of thousands of participants each time. With fan fiction and gorgeous costumes, it's a movement that doesn't just stop at nerd culture. The long long line that begins in the early morning of opening day is one of Odaiba's characteristic sights. It might be fun to take a peek at such a passionate event which you can't find anywhere else.
*Image: Comic Market pre-meeting
16 services a day (bound for Tokyo Big Sight)/ 20 services a day (bound for Haneda Airport)
Haneda Airport to Grand Nikko Tokyo Daiba / Fuji Television 520 yen
Haneda Airport to Tokyo Teleport Railway Station / Palette Town 580 yen
Haneda Airport to Tokyo Big Sight 620 yen
A ticket system is in use on buses from Haneda Airport. Please use the airport bus passenger counter or the vending machines at the bus stops.
When travelling to Haneda Airport, please put your money/ticket into the fare box.
Call "Keikyu Highway Bus Reservation Center"
※ "Hotel Grand Pacific LE DAIBA" changed to "Grand Nikko Tokyo Daiba" on July 1st, 2016.
Phone:03-3743-0022 (9:00 a.m.-6:30 p.m.)
English, Chinese (Mandarin) and Korean operators available.
This article was published in April 2013
Former Yokohama-sightseeing ambassador Sae Kitazawa will guide us through Tokyo's popular sightseeing spot, Odaiba.