The now iconic Rainbow Bridge was built to be a symbol of Tokyo, but who’d have thought it would do its job so well?
The bridge is famous for its nightly illumination, the colors of which change depending on the day and time. The suspension cables are lit either white, green, or coral pink, while the bridge’s towers transform seasonally (cool white in the summer and warm white in the winter). In recent years, the towers have been colored for special occasions like Breast Cancer Awareness Month (pink), World Diabetes Day (blue), and the holidays (rainbow).
The holiday illumination is the most popular. It’s the only time of the year you can see the bridge lit so brightly and it’s often accompanied by a short musical fireworks performance after sunset. It usually starts on the first Saturday in December and lasts about a month.
You can also catch great views of Tokyo from the Rainbow Promenade pedestrian walkway, which has two sides: north, with a view of the Tokyo skyline, and south, with a view of Odaiba (and Mt. Fuji on especially clear days). You must pick a side to walk on when you start, so you can’t see both views in one trip, but the walk is only about 800 meters or a 30-45 minutes stroll one way, making a round trip easy.
If you’re planning on visiting Odaiba, consider going for a bike ride around the island. While biking is prohibited on the promenade, you can push your bike across on a wooden plank to the other side.