Tokyo Skytree has always been something I looked at from far away. 1 in 8 Japanese have visited within the first 100 days of it being open. That’s an incredible number of people isn’t it? This time I headed there on a rental bicycle.
Leaving the hustle and bustle to cycle to Skytree
After renting a bicycle at Asakusa station, I headed to Tokyo Skytree. Even if you aren’t familiar with the lay of the land don’t fret, just look for the world’s largest antenna building.
Skytree usually is something we see from far away, but as you get close your heart starts beating from the excitement and anticipation as it grows in your field of view.
The image above is Tokyo Skytree from Sumida Park. There are about 700 cherry blossom trees and in spring you can observe Tokyo Skytree peaking out from the clouds in a sea of cherry blossoms which is definitely a sight to remember.
Taito ward rental cycle 6am to 8pm Fee: 200 JPY per day Sumida Park Bicycle parking lot TX Asakusa Station south bicycle parking lot Shin Okachimachi Station bicycle parking lot Naka Okachimachi Station bicycle parking lot
The sky looks higher than usual
I lazily arrive at the base of the Tokyo Skytree, this morning of my day off. When I look up its size is definitely impressive to say the least.
It opens at 8am and I got here at 8:06 but there already is a 40 minute wait! I thought I would be first in by getting up early and was a bit shocked but apparently a 40 minute wait is short comparatively.
Talking about the fact that Tokyo Skytree was built using the 5 tier pagoda for inspiration in its quake handling architecture or that the elevator is so smooth you can stand a 500 JPY coin on its edge and it won’t fall, the wait disappeared.
While waiting for 40 minutes those with reserved tickets and group tours kept passing us by. If you don’t like lines its probably best to reserve entrance tickets prior to getting here. The reserved tickets are only 500 JPY for adults.
(up to the first observation deck) Day of entrance fee Adults 2000 JPY, middle and high school 1500 JPY, elementary 900 JPY, toddlers 600 JPY
Reserved fees Adults 2500 JPY, middle and high school 2000 JPY, elementary 1400 JPY, toddlers 1100 JPY
(up to the second observation deck) Only day of entrance Adults 1000 JPY, middle and high school 800 JPY, elementary 500 JPY, toddlers 300 JPY
Cars below are toy sized
Piling into the high tech elevator the ride is only a short 50 seconds, and you’re at the first observation deck. Looking out at the scenery below cars are only matchbox car sized at best. It’s breathtaking and you are completely removed from the reality of life below.
You can fully experience how flat Kanto region is. While looking out you cant but help try to look for your house. I couldn’t find mine though.
Look for the glass floor
The First observation deck is on three levels from 350m, 345m, and 340m above the street level. Even with only 5m difference it makes a world of difference. On the 340m level there is a glass floor, don’t miss it. Standing on glass and looking down you start to catch vertigo. The trains passing below also look small and toy like.
The second observation deck line has a 1.5 hour wait sign, but maybe some people give up or maybe just timing but that occaisionally changes to 1 hour or 40 minutes suddenly. When it hits the shortest time by chance definitely give it a try.
Coming back down from with the first group in you can watch as the parking lot fills with group tour buses. Saying sayonara to a crowded Skytree we go cycling.
Riding around this area you find Skytree in the most random places. The “Red Skytree” in the McDonalds sign near Oshiage station, or the famous “Upside down Skytree” from the Jikkenbashi on the Kita Jikkengawa river.
The image below shows the “Golden Skytree”. You can see this reflection when going toward Asakusa in the Asahi Beer corporate building which is designed to look like a mug of beer. I’ve went approved it as my own version of Skytree because it seems like it would bring me financial luck.
Tokyo Skytree is still a newborn in the world of famous Japanese towers. Finding your own versions of it while exploring the old town on a bicycle might be something to look forward to. Why not try it out during these clear autumn days.
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