Shibuya Scramble Square: Tokyo’s Newest Rooftop Observation Deck

Location, location, location. It should come as no surprise that this classic real estate adage also applies to skyscraper rooftop observation decks. Shibuya Scramble Square, the newest addition to Tokyo’s ever-evolving skyline, is no exception.
With so many available vantage points from which to gaze down upon Tokyo’s endless sprawl, I was admittedly skeptical that Shibuya Scramble Square could offer a new experience. Thankfully, I was proven wrong. If you don’t mind spending up to 2,000 yen for a unique, breathtaking view of Japan’s capital, look no further than Shibuya Scramble Square.

2020-07-13   Visit: Modern Japan, Tokyo,


What to expect

A small dining area on the 46th floor of Shibuya Scramble Square

Completed on November 1, 2019, Shibuya Scramble Square is a mixed-use skyscraper over five years in the making. Floors 1 to 13 consist of your typical collection of high-end shops and restaurants and most of the remaining floors are filled out with office space. Check out the floor guide to see if there’s anything that might pique your interests while you’re in the neighborhood.

Strolling through the Sky Gallery on the 46th floor

The real fun begins on the14th floor, directly accessible via an express elevator just outside of the East Exit of JR Shibuya Station. This transition floor marks the beginning of your adventure, where you can purchase a ticket or use your pre-purchased ticket to gain access to the express elevators going to the 45th and 46th floors as well as the rooftop.

The experience

Looking down on the world-famous Shibuya (Scramble) Crossing

Unlike Shinjuku, Marunouchi, and Roppongi, Shibuya isn’t known for having an instantly recognizable skyline. However, this fact, along with its central location, actually makes Shibuya a prime place for a 230-meter-high rooftop observation deck.  

Shibuya Scramble Square offers the most comprehensive view of Nishi-Shinjuku in all of Tokyo.

On a clear day you can stand in the center of a panoramic view that includes highlights such as Roppongi Hills, Tokyo Tower, the Nishi-Shinjuku skyscraper district, Tokyo Skytree, and more. Additionally, from this height, you can gaze all the way to the mountainous western edge of Tokyo Prefecture and beyond, including the majestic Mt. Fuji. This is also one of the few observation decks with an unobstructed view of the iconic saddle-shaped peaks of Mt. Tsukuba, located northeast of Tokyo in Ibaraki Prefecture.

A landmark-filled shot including the Akasaka Palace (center-right), the New National (Olympic) Stadium (left), and Mt. Tsukuba in the distance

Tips for making the most of your visit

  • Consider purchasing your ticket online. Not only can you get a 200-yen discount, but you can also select a timeslot for your visit. The number of daily visitors is limited, and you don’t want to show up on a crowded day just to be turned away. However you buy your tickets, be sure to arrive about 20 minutes early. The staff will process your tickets and get you lined up well before the scheduled time for your rooftop session.
  • Read the rules beforehand. As an open-air observation deck, security and safety is taken extremely seriously. Shutterbugs and Instagrammers should pay close attention to the rules regarding cameras and camera equipment. Prepare accordingly.
  • Business hours can change due to external circumstances. In fact, if weather conditions are poor, the rooftop may be closed entirely. If you are planning to visit Shibuya Scramble Square without a reservation, it might be a good idea to call ahead to make sure the observation deck is open.

Is Shibuya Scramble Square worth your time?

Roppongi Hills (left) and Tokyo Tower

With so many things to do in Tokyo, including plenty of observation decks, is Shibuya Scramble Square worth the trouble? If you’re into urban vistas and don’t mind parting with up to 2,000 yen, then Shibuya Scramble Square will impress.

First of all, it’s one of only two observation decks that offer unrestricted rooftop access. Its closest rival, the Roppongi Hill’s Sky Deck costs up to 500 yen more for an arguably inferior view. The rest of the city’s observation decks are enclosed with views partially obstructed by other buildings.

Tokyo Skytree as viewed from the rooftop of Shibuya Scramble Square.

Of course, nothing rivals the sheer height of Tokyo Skytree, however, to reach that 450-meter-high observatory, you’ll have to pay much more. So, if you are looking for the perfect place in Tokyo to get a lay of the land, look no further than Shibuya Scramble Square. 

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AUTHOR

Anthony

Anthony

Writer / Translator

Originally from Riverside, California, I've been living, working, and writing in Japan since 2009. Japan has become my second home, and I'm especially fond of Shinjuku, Tokyo. That being said, I also love getting out into the countryside and exploring the entire country. Through Tadaima Japan, I hope to share the wonders of Japan with a wider, international audience. Check out my articles if you enjoy exploring on foot, convenient cafes, and affordable dining.

Information

Address 2 Chome-24-12 Shibuya, Shibuya City, Tokyo 150-0002
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Hours 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Price 2,000 yen (1,800 for advance tickets)
Close NA (observation deck may be closed during inclement weather)
Access One-minute walk from the East Exit of JR Shibuya Station.
Phone 03-4221-4280
Language Japanese
English
Website https://www.shibuya-scramble-square.com/