Although technically the name of the stadium and not the area itself, most people associate this area with Tokyo Dome and all the surrounding attractions you can enjoy: screaming above Tokyo’s skyline, fleeing for your life from terrifying Yōkai, floating among the stars, and strolling through one of Japan’s oldest and most beautiful gardens. Heck, you could do it all on the same day if you wanted!
What Is It?
As mentioned above, Tokyo Dome is the stadium and not the area, and is actually in Tokyo’s Bunkyō ward— but you’re never going to hear anyone invite you to Bunkyō. They’ll either say Suidobashi (which is the station) or Tokyo Dome to refer to the neighborhood. This is because Suidobashi Station is across the street from Tokyo Dome—a massive entertainment and shopping complex, as well as the world’s largest roofed baseball stadium.
What Can You Do?
The Japanese love baseball, and there is no better place to share in their love of the game than at the Tokyo Dome Baseball Stadium. It also host various other events and sports like music concerts and kick boxing. However, if your only recollection of baseball is your brother threatening to lock you in a Boston crab if you didn’t get off the SNES so he could play Ken Griffey Jr. MLB, you can skip it entirely for Tokyo Dome City Attractions.
Attractions include the Big O! Ferris wheel with karaoke gondolas, the “ONRYOU ZASHIKI EXTREME” haunted house featuring live performers (no thanks, playa’), and the Thunder Dolphin roller coaster that weaves between the city center and gives beautiful views of the Tokyo skyline—if you can open your eyes anyway.
Other points of interests at Tokyo Dome are the LaQua Spa and Shopping Mall, the ASOBono Indoor Playground, and the TeNQ Space Museum. ASOBono is the largest indoor playground in Tokyo and is also open to all ages. TeNQ offers unique perspectives of outer space thanks to projection mapping and 4K theater systems. All of these venues are located inside the Tokyo Dome complex and make for great rainy day trips.
While all this is modern and exciting, just West of Tokyo Dome is one of the best traditional gardens in Tokyo— Koishikawa-Kōrakuen. The seventeenth century garden is one the only three surviving daimyō gardens of Edo. It was made with input from Confucian scholar Zhu Zhiyu, and thus features Japanese and Chinese aesthetic. The garden includes arched bridges, beautiful ponds, and weeping willow sakura tress. The best times to visit the garden are during sakura season and the fall foliage.
What Can You Eat?
There are dozens of options within Tokyo Dome for both Japanese (ramen, sushi, soba, tacoyaki, etc.) and Western (Shake Shack, Taco Bell, etc.) taste. You can visit their official English website for a full list of restaurants.
However, if you’d like to get away from the crowds you can find smaller and secluded restaurants in streets leading away from Tokyo Dome. Koishikawa-Kōrakuen also has Japanese sweets at rest stops within the garden, as well as a traditional tea house located near the entrance gate called Kantoku-tei.
Where Is It?
Suidobashi Station, located right across from Tokyo Dome, is served by the JR Chuo Line. There is also Kōrakuen Station located within Tokyo Dome City that is operated by Tokyo Metro and serves the Marunouchi Line and the Namboku Line. Also nearby is Kasuga Station, served by the Toei Mita Line and the Toei Ōedo Line. While you could walk to Koishikawa-Kōrakuen from any of these lines (5-10 minutes), another option is Iidabashi Station, which also serves the JR Chuo Line.