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Tokyo Tower Still Proudly Watches Over the City

Post: Thursday February 4, 2016

Throughout Tokyo, there are many notable wonders that await the avid seeker, and among the myriad of marvels is one that towers high above most others. There is certainly much to be said about “Tokyo’s Eiffel Tower,” which it is so appropriately named, as an iconic landmark notable for its views both inside and out. Let’s look at all the reasons why Tokyo Tower still stands the test of time.

Tokyo Tower Article

Tokyo Tower’s Cultural Significance

What’s 320 meters tall? If you guessed Tokyo Tower, you’d be sorely disappointed. In fact, that number actually represents the height of the Eiffel Tower, putting it 13 meters shorter than Tokyo Tower’s 333 looming meters. From 1958 to the 2012 construction of Tokyo Skytree, it was Japan’s largest steel structure. However, depending on whom you ask, Tokyo Tower’s reduced stature in the face of a newer generation doesn’t diminish either its allure or its importance. Tokyo Tower is a postwar symbol of rebirth and economic prosperity—a self-sustaining steel beacon to the world. In addition to representing a resurgence of Japanese vitality, it still also serves as a broadcasting transmission tower.

Experiencing the Panoramic Tokyo Tower View

Furnishing some of the city’s most breathtaking vistas, the view from Tokyo Tower leaves little to want from any other vantage point in Tokyo. Peppered with the twinkle of lights from the city skyline, Tokyo Tower’s observatory windows boast full panoramic views compared to the narrow view from Skytree. One of the most glorious views is of the world-famous Mt. Fuji, whose beautifully snowcapped peak is best captured during the daytime in winter, when it protrudes above the clouds, slightly kissing the heavens.

Tokyo Tower Observatory Information

Tokyo Tower width=

Photo by IQRemix by Flickr 

The main Tokyo Tower observatory has two floors, and there is a special observation deck. The first floor of the observation deck is sure to give a real sense of height since it has portions of glass flooring leading one’s eyes directly to 145 meters below. Going to the second floor of the observation deck provides even more expansive views. However, things really take off on the special observation deck, where paying just a little more provides you with panoptic views from 250 meters high—100 meters higher than the main observation deck. Come in the evening for a truly impactful visit, when glowing city lights and LED illuminated windows give the special observation deck a futuristic feel that imparts a sense of weightlessness.

Tokyo Tower Price Guide and Hours

The observatories are open year round. Do note that there is a special discount for large groups. Although a basic Tokyo Tower price guide is provided here, please refer to the home website for additional information concerning Tokyo Tower tickets.

Observatory FloorAdmissionFee
Main Observatory Adults, senior high school student or older 900 yen
Children, primary school students to junior high school students 500 yen
Children, 4 years old and older 400 yen
Special Observatory Adults, senior high school student or older 700 yen*
Children, primary school students to junior high school students 500 yen*
Children, 4 years old and older 400 yen*

* The Special Observatory fee must be paid in addition to the Main Observatory fee.

Tokyo Tower at Night

Tokyo Night View L

If you are interested in visiting Tokyo Tower at night, then please keep in mind that light shows are not limited to the special observation deck. In fact, during one of three seasonal Tokyo Tower illumination themes, both the atmosphere and the decorations throughout the tower change, so that you are very likely to have a uniquely different experience depending on when you visit.

Tokyo Warm Light

Dates: April to May, varies yearly

Location: Main Observatory, 1F

Tokyo Warm Light was designed to blend luminously into the night sky, creating the perfect ambiance for visitors in search of an environment that embraces the spring season.

The Milky Way Illumination

Dates: The beginning of June to July 10th

Location: Main Observatory, 1F

In the dazzling showcase of this illumination, shooting stars form an optical representation of the separation of two famous lovers, Vega and Altair.

Christmas Illumination

Dates: November 3rd to December 25th

Location: Front Entrance

This popular Tokyo Tower illumination features a 15-meter Christmas tree as the centerpiece of a lightshow. Accompanied by periodic music and Christmas displays that welcome festive families and cuddling couples.


Foot Town and One Piece Tower

While the top half of Tokyo Tower houses cafés and souvenir shops, too, the base of Tokyo Tower is an entertainment hub called Foot Town. Spanning five full floors, Foot Town provides plenty to do for those not wishing to traverse to the top. On the first floor is an amusement park based on the famous One Piece series, complete with games and puzzles of sorts—the entrance fee for adults and children is ¥3,200 yen and ¥1,600 yen, respectively. The fourth and fifth floors are dedicated to the One Piece Tower, and there’s also a One Piece memorabilia shop for those who want to take home memories of the beloved manga and anime hit.

If One Piece isn’t your pace, have a bite at the buffet restaurant where children three and under may eat for free, or stop by the café or cola bar before visiting the aquarium also located on the first floor. The second floor is a food court complete with cafés, an ice cream shop, quick-serve restaurants, and sit-down style restaurants. A third-floor gallery rounds off the list of Tokyo Tower attractions.

Views of Tokyo Tower


Photo by Kyle Hasegawa on Flickr

If you simply can’t get enough of Tokyo Tower, scurry to one of the many locations around the city that keep Tokyo Tower in their sights.

Prince Park Tower Tokyo Hotel

Observe Tokyo Tower from afar, such as from the highly regarded Prince Park Tower Tokyo hotel. The views from this luxurious establishment, already resplendent with illuminated fountains and manicured seasonal gardens that serenely contrast with the surrounding urban landscape, are enhanced even more by the warm glow of Tokyo Tower in the background. To ensure a perfect view, you can purchase a special package that guarantees a view of Tokyo Tower from your hotel room; you can also become a Premium Member, thus claiming the hotel lounge and its windows your oyster. Those hoping for a more affordable option can go to the hotel bar—and soak up the sights along with a posh drink or two.

Sekai Boueki Building (World Trade Center)

In Hamamatsucho, near the station, lies another fantastic, towering building that provides panoramic views of the city: The Sekai Boueki Building, also known as the World Trade Center, which happens to align well enough with Tokyo Tower to get a great view of it. After you have taken in the view of one awesome building from another, catch something to eat at one of the many affordable restaurants at the base of the building. Dinner is highly recommended, as you can catch Tokyo Tower in the evening, lit up for all to see.

Make a Twilight Rendezvous with Tokyo Tower

Wherever you choose to view the tower from, the spectacle of Tokyo Tower at night has already been mentioned—obviously, dinner is highly recommended. From dusk until midnight, Tokyo Tower is illuminated with colored floodlights. It is lit in orange from October to July, and in white from July to October, with color changes according to special occasions. So whether you’re searching for the perfect date spot, looking to entertain your family or simply want to witness a piece of Japan’s storied history, Tokyo Tower truly soars above the rest.

For more activities in and around Tokyo, we invite you to read through our Travel, Recreation and Parks articles available on our Tokyo Guide for Expats.

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