Region
Kanto
Island
Honshu
Largest City
Tokyo
Population
12,059,237

Tokyo Station

From Hokkaido to Kyushu, travelers can get pretty much anywhere from Tokyo station.

Tokyo station is in the heart of Japan’s business and finance areas because of its convenient location, easy access and economical significance. Anyone passing through Japan should be familiar with this travel hub, as it is the main intercity railway in the capital city.

From Hokkaido to Kyushu, this station allows travelers to get pretty much anywhere. A major interchange for 16 different train lines, Tokyo is one of Japan’s busiest stations, with more than 3,000 trains passing through on any given day. That’s thanks, in part, to the servicing of seven different shinkansen (bullet train) lines.

The surrounding area is a landscape of office buildings, global financial institutions, shopping districts and the must-see Tokyo Imperial Palace.

Two ladies in front of the Imperial Palace, Tokyo

Tokyo Imperial Palace is just a few blocks from Tokyo Station.

Inside the station

Interestingly enough, you don’t actually need to leave the station to get your shopping fix. The interior has many high-class brand-name stores and restaurants, but that convenience will come at a cost as these in-station locations are usually quite crowded. During lunchtime and late evening hours, waiting times for restaurants can start at around 30 minutes and extending up to two hours.

The station’s underground shopping complex, located in the basement of the Yaesu North exit, contains the culturally-infused Tokyo Character Street. Whether you’re an anime lover or just looking for a cute trinket, it features more than 20 stores each themed after a well-known popular cartoon. Anime characters include those from Dragon Ball, Naruto and One Piece, as well as Snoopy, Pokemon and Hello Kitty.

Near Tokyo station

On the 23rd December, in the return up to Christmas, Japan celebrates the Emperor’s Birthday. Crowds flock from Tokyo Station to the Imperial Palace with Japanese flags in hand and many shouts of “Banzai!” Eventually, a small grandfather-figure pops out onto the balcony to a renewed round of cheers from Japanese locals and a healthy dose of visiting foreigners. Only on this day and January 2nd (when the Emperor’s New Year’s Greeting is held) can you visit the inner palace ground and see members of the Imperial Family. Even if you don’t have the chance to visit the Imperial Palace during this celebratory time, there is plenty to see and do. Built on top of what used to be Edo Castle by the Tokogawa Shoganate (which was the tallest castle ever constructed in Japan) and surrounded by beautiful grounds including some pretty fancy-looking moats, bridges and gardens; the Imperial Palace brings a slice of classical elegance to the otherwise crazy everyday goings on of the city itself. If you’re not sure to where to start and have a solid grasp of Japanese: book yourself onto a guided tour. There are offered year-round and take about 75 minutes. Advance reservations can be made in advance through the Imperial Household Agency (details below), but same-day registrations before the start of the tours are also possible at the Kikyomon Gate. Don’t worry if the only Japanese you’ve learnt is only food/drink/Pokemon related, the Imperial Palace East Gardens are wonderful to walk around whatever the weather and are open on everyday except for Mondays, Fridays or special occasions. Here you can find the ruins of Edo Castle, dating back to the great fire in 1657 that destroyed the original structure. A Japanese-style garden now stands in the place of it’s secondary circle of defence, providing a place to relax and unwind.

Outside the station

When you venture outside of the station, the Marunouchi business and shopping district should be the first stop on your list. This area offers thousands of upscale stores, restaurants and other luxuries.

Don’t leave without seeing the prestigious Imperial Palace, located a mere two blocks from the station. Surrounded by an Edo-era moat, stone walls and always-pristine gardens, the grounds are an ideal place to go for a stroll through Japanese history.

Tours of the actual palace are a bit tricky, as they are not offered seven days a week. Nevertheless, travelers are welcome to visit and take photos on the grounds daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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Trivia

On the 23rd December, in the return up to Christmas, Japan celebrates the Emperor’s Birthday. Crowds flock from Tokyo Station to the Imperial Palace with Japanese flags in hand and many shouts of “Banzai!” Eventually, a small grandfather-figure pops out onto the balcony to a renewed round of cheers from Japanese locals and a healthy dose of visiting foreigners. Only on this day and January 2nd (when the Emperor’s New Year’s Greeting is held) can you visit the inner palace ground and see members of the Imperial Family. Even if you don’t have the chance to visit the Imperial Palace during this celebratory time, there is plenty to see and do. Built on top of what used to be Edo Castle by the Tokogawa Shoganate (which was the tallest castle ever constructed in Japan) and surrounded by beautiful grounds including some pretty fancy-looking moats, bridges and gardens; the Imperial Palace brings a slice of classical elegance to the otherwise crazy everyday goings on of the city itself. If you’re not sure to where to start and have a solid grasp of Japanese: book yourself onto a guided tour. There are offered year-round and take about 75 minutes. Advance reservations can be made in advance through the Imperial Household Agency (details below), but same-day registrations before the start of the tours are also possible at the Kikyomon Gate. Don’t worry if the only Japanese you’ve learnt is only food/drink/Pokemon related, the Imperial Palace East Gardens are wonderful to walk around whatever the weather and are open on everyday except for Mondays, Fridays or special occasions. Here you can find the ruins of Edo Castle, dating back to the great fire in 1657 that destroyed the original structure. A Japanese-style garden now stands in the place of it’s secondary circle of defence, providing a place to relax and unwind.

Near Tokyo station

Read more: https://travel.gaijinpot.com/tokyo-imperial-palace/

How To Get There

Address

Japan, 〒100-0005 Tōkyō-to, Chiyoda-ku, Marunouchi, 1 Chome−9−1

By train

Tokyo station is accessible via 16 train lines that run through central Tokyo.

That includes the Yamanote, Keihin-Tohoku, Chuo, Tokaido, Yokosuka, Sobu , Keiyo and Musashino lines, plus seven different Shinkansen (bullet trains) and the Tokyo Metro Marunouchi line.

Where To Stay

The Tokyo Station Hotel
  • Marunouchi 1-9-1 Chiyoda-Ku, Tokyo 100-0005
  • 9.3/10
  • 0.1 km
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Marunouchi Hotel
  • Marunouchi 1-6-3 Chiyoda-Ku, Tokyo 100-0005
  • 8.9/10
  • 0.2 km
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Oakwood Premier Tokyo
  • Marunouchi 1-8-2 Chiyoda-Ku, Tokyo 100-0005
  • 9.1/10
  • 0.2 km
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Shangri-La Hotel, Tokyo
  • Marunouchi Trust Tower Main 1-8-3 Marunouchi 100-8283
  • 9.2/10
  • 0.2 km
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