Planning a trip to Japan
This is where the fun begins. I’ve meet friends in Japan who took me to some great shops near and far. I’ve stumbled across shops and walked passed shops too. Don’t be conservative and don’t be afraid to boldly go where no one has gone before to get a new Godzilla. I seem to have a six sense when it comes to collectible shops. I can just tell where toy shops are located. But you don’t need to rely on this sense. There is sightseeing, then there is shopping. On the following pages are sights and shops in Tokyo, Nagoya, Karuizawa, Kyoto, and Osaka. Throughout this cities you will find a myriad of shops not provided below. If you have a hunch about a place, then check it out. There are many chain stores that you should frequent: Animate, BOX OFF, HMV, LABI, Mandarake, Toys-R-Us, Yama Denki, book and manga shops (Kinokuniya). In addition to these shops, stop in the department stores, otaku & hobby shops, and temple shops. You will be surprised where you find Godzilla. There are many more shops on the Tokyo Google map below than I’ve listed.
The map below identifies five important locations for Godzilla sightseeing:
1. Ginza Wako Building and the Godzilla Statue
Japan, 〒100-0006 Tokyo, Chiyoda, Yurakucho, 1 Chome−3−2 TOHO シネマズシャンテ１・２・３日比谷シャンテ
The most convenient stations for accessing the Ginza district are Ginza Station on the Hibiya, Marunouchi and Ginza Subway Lines and Yurakucho Station on the JR Yamanote Line, JR Keihin-Tohoku Line and Yurakucho Subway Line.
2. Japan National Diet Building
1 Chome-7-1 Nagatacho, Chiyoda, Tokyo 100-0014, Japan
A 3-minute walk from Nagata-cho Station on Tokyo Metro subway and a 5-minute walk from Kokkai-gijidomae Station
3. Tokyo Tower
4 Chome-2-8 Shibakoen, Minato, Tokyo 105-0011, Japan
The closest subway stations to Tokyo Tower are Onarimon Station on the Mita Subway Line, Akabanebashi Station on the Oedo Subway Line and Kamiyacho on the Hibiya Subway Line, which are all about a 5-10 minute walk from the tower. About a 15-20 minute walk from Hamamatsucho Station on the JR Yamanote Line or Daimon Station on the Asakusa or Oedo subway lines.
4. Shinjuku and Hotel Gracery
Japan, 〒160-8466 Tokyo, Shinjuku, Kabukichō, 1 Chome−19, 歌舞伎町1丁目19−1 JR Yamanote line and get off at Shinjuku Station
5. Toho Studios
1-4-1 Seijo, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo, 157-8561 10 minute walk from Seijo-Gakuen-mae station on Odakyu line. Exit from South exit. TohoStudio.jp
The map above marks major districts for Godzilla shopping: Nakano, Shibuya, Harajuku, Chiyoda, and Ikebukuro. In each of these districts there is plenty to see and an abundance of shops. Getting around to these places will require more than one day. Here is a Google map of my favorite places and a short list of shops in these major Tokyo districts.
Nakano Mandarake and Nakano Broadway Closest station: Nakano 〒164-0001 東京都中野区中野５丁目５２−１５ There are dozens of toy shops in this four-story complex, including Mandarake, OneUp, Bow Wow, Robot Robot, showcase shops, etc. The shopping complex is a short walk from Nakano Station, which is five minute train ride from Shinjuku via the JR Chuo Line.
Gojira-ya Closest station: Koenji 東京都杉並区高円寺南3-67-1 http://www1.plala.or.jp/GODZILLAYA/ Hours: 2PM – 9 PM (Closed Tues + Wed) A short walk from the Koenji station
Shibuya Mandarake Closest Station: Shibuya http://www.fewmany.com/index2.htm 東京都渋谷区宇田川町31-2 渋谷BEAM B2 Store hours: 12:00-8:00 (open 7 days/week)
HARAJUKU KIDDY LAND
Harajuku Kiddy Land 6 Chome-14-2 Jingūmae, Shibuya-ku, Tōkyō-to 150-0001, Japan
3-min. walk from Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line / Fukutoshin Line Meiji-jingumae (Harajuku) Station; 10-min. walk from Tokyo Metro Ginza Line / Chiyoda Line / Hanzomon Line Omotesando Station; 7-min. walk from JR Yamanote Line Harajuku Station
Yodobashi 1-1 Kanda Hanaoka-Cho, Chiyoda-ku yodobashi-akiba.com Open daily 9.30am-10pm Yodobashi is located on the east side of Akihabara Station.
IKEBUKURO SUNSHINE CITY
Sunshine City サンシャインシティ 170-8440 Tokyo Prefecture, Toshima-ku, Higashiikebukuro 3-1-5, Japan
Toy-R-Us and the sight of Ultraman Festivals. 3 minutes on foot from Higashi-Ikebukuro Station (Tokyo Metro Yurakucho Line). 8 minutes on foot from Ikebukuro Station (JR, Tokyo Metro, Seibu Line, Tobu Line). 4 minutes on foot from Higashi-Ikebukuro 4-Chome Station (Toden Arakawa Line)
Below is a more exhaustive map of Tokyo shops. Other important shops to check out include Yamada Denki, LABi, Book Off, Toys-R-Us, and anywhere anime and otaku items are sold. Tokyo is amazing but exhausting. There is too much to see and never enough time. Get ready to ride the subway and to walk the streets. Give yourself time and get plenty of rest.