A little piece of Paris in Tokyo, this 333 metre-high landmark offers fantastic views over the city and is a striking part of the skyline.
From the ground, Tokyo Tower in southern Tokyo is an unmissable landmark. Inspired by Paris’s Eiffel Tower, but nine metres taller, it was built during the reconstruction of Tokyo after World War II both as a broadcasting tower and as a symbol of Japan’s growing economic power. When it was finished in 1958, it was the tallest tower in the world. Since then, more than 150 million people have visited the tower and continue to flock here every year.
Standing at 333 metres above the streets of Tokyo, the ‘international orange’ and white steel beams make a striking contrast against the grey and white buildings nearby. At night its girders are illuminated throughout the year in different patterns of colours – white in the summer to help cool over-heated minds, and orange for warmth in winter.
At the base of the tower in the four-storey building known as Foot Town there’s another of the world’s largest: one of the most extensive aquariums ever built, boasting more than 50,000 fish from almost a thousand species. Inside Foot Town, there are plenty of places to buy Japanese food or takeaways, as well as a children’s amusement park, souvenir shops and a waxwork museum.
One of the most popular features of Foot Town are of course the express elevators to the Main Observatory at 145 metres up. From this vantage point, you can watch the life of the city happening all around you while enjoying refreshments in the café or listening to live music. Not for the fainthearted, ‘look down’ windows let you see the ground far below. By taking a second elevator up to the Special Observatory over 100 metres higher, you have the perfect place to orient yourself before returning to explore the rest of the city.
The nearest subway is Akabanebashi, but many of the bus routes, monorail and other subway lines have stops close by.