July 25, 2009


Hamamatsucho Station is probably the closest point on the Yamanote Line to Tokyo Bay, with the sea being less than half a mile away, and as a result the area you can look around is somewhat restricted.
If you head towards the sea on exiting the station though, you soon arrive at Kyu-Shiba-Rikyu Garden, which makes for a pleasant stroll and seems to be a spot that office workers in the area like to come to during their lunch break if the temperature isn't too high.

The main street leading inland from the station is lined with office buildings including the World Trade Centre Building, and most of these buildings are of a characterless, purely functional design.

The Shiba Dai-jingu is an all-concrete ultra modern shrine that seemed to attract a steady flow of office workers coming to pray for luck during their break. People work through the rope circle part way up the steps following a prescribed pattern in order to bring good luck/ward off bad luck, or something of that order.

This guy with a shoe fetish on a retro looking sign was above a shop in the area, though I forget whether or not it was actually a shoe shop.
Back on the main street and half-way between the station and Shiba Koen is Daimon, an old gate which straddles the busy road.
One of the main attractions in Shiba Koen is the big temple Zojo-ji, and here you can see the Sangedatsu-Mon entrance to the temple grounds.

This tree just inside the main gate was apparently planted by Ulysses Grant on a visit to Tokyo during the Meiji era.

Tokyo Tower viewed from the temple grounds on an overcast afternoon.

After wandering around Shiba Koen for a bit, I headed back towards the station, because there wasn't a great deal else to see to be honest.
Would love to know the story behind the naming of this wine bar.
Just as I was about to head back into the station, I noticed this airship flying past Tokyo Tower.

How can I sum up Hamamatsucho? Well, it's hardly the most vital stop on the Yamanote Line, and while it does have one or two points of interest, I found it largely devoid of local atmosphere.

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