The capital city of Japan is a mix of neon lights and towering skyscrapers, decorated temples and photogenic old streets. Many can agree that Tokyo is one of the most picturesque cities in the world, but not all of us have the time to explore the entirety of this big city for picture spots. In this article, we have listed out the best 20 spots in all of Tokyo that are worthy of the ‘gram. Make sure to mark it on your maps for your next trip to Tokyo!
1. Naka Meguro River
Naka-Meguro is a little fashionable neighbourhood in the city centre, near the famous Shibuya. One of the highlights of this area is the river. In springtime, all the trees that line the sides of the river bloom pale pink cherry blossom flowers, making this spot one of the most popular sakura spots in all of Tokyo!
Location: Naka Meguro River
2. Sensoji Temple
Sensoji Temple, located at the end of Nakamise Dori, is the oldest Buddhist temple in the city. The temple grounds are huge, consisting of the main hall, a five-storey pagoda, an impressive big torii gate and streets of souvenir stalls. It does get very busy in the daytime but it gets a little quieter at night. If you prefer your Instagram shots without people in them, consider going down in the evening.
Location: Sensoji Temple
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3. Takeshita Street
Another busy but very Instagrammable spot in Tokyo is Takeshita Street in the Harajuku neighbourhood. This area used to be the home of unique Japan-born subcultures like Lolita and Gyaru, which is why you’ll be able to find stores that sell these styles of clothing. A good tip is to go off the main street and onto the narrow alleys to get away from the crowd, and get better snaps!
Location: Takeshita Street
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4. Omoide Yokocho
Omoide Yokocho translates to “Memory Lane”. It’s an alleyway consisting of a couple of food stalls and Japanese-style pubs known as izakayas. One of the best parts of this photo spot is its close proximity to Shinjuku Station, and offers the authentic atmosphere of the Japanese drinking culture
Location: Omoide Yokocho
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5. Shibuya Scramble
This next location is when it’s impossible to not get the crowd in the shot, but we definitely want a bit of crowd anyway. The Shibuya Scramble is the famous intersection you see on Instagram. This crossing is huge and you’ll realise that you’re not the only one wanting to get that shot for the gram. The crossing time is only approximately thirty seconds, so if you can’t get that shot the first time, cross a few times, for the ‘gram!
Location: Shibuya Scramble
6. Yoyogi Koen & Meiji Jingu
One of the best parts about Tokyo is that you can still escape modernity by going to a park, and Yoyogi Koen is one of the biggest parks in the whole city. Despite its size, it gets extremely crowded in spring as it’s the go-to spot for locals to go ‘hanami’ (picnic under the cherry blossoms) One of the main highlights of this park is that it is right next to Meiji Jingu, a Shinto shrine completed in 1920. This shrine is one of the most significant landmarks in all of Japan!
Location: Yoyogi Koen
7. Inokashira Park
Another great park to go to is Inokashira Park. It is slightly out of the city centre but it’s definitely worth the trip. Other than being a major cherry blossom spot, you can rent a boat and paddle in the pond. There’s also a zoo attached to it, as well as many cute cafes. You’ll definitely get your cute Instagram-worthy pictures here!
Location: Inokashira Park
8. Tokyu Plaza Harajuku
This next spot is one you’ve definitely seen on Instagram. This Tokyo Plaza outlet in Harajuku is home to stylish brands and unique cafes, but the highlight of the building is its kaleidoscope escalator entrance. You definitely need a picture here!
Location: Tokyu Plaza Harajuku
9. The Soho
A little out of the city centre is The Soho in Odaiba. It’s actually an open-concept office space, but it greatly resembles a colourful dollhouse thanks to its brightly painted doorways. We definitely recommend coming at nighttime when the building is all lit up.
Location: The Soho
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10. Roppongi Hills City View
Tokyo is full of skyscrapers. One of the best places to view the big city from high up is on the roof of Roppongi Hills. This viewpoint offers great views of landmarks including Tokyo Tower and Tokyo Skytree. You might even be lucky enough to see Mount Fuji on a clear day!
Location: Roppongi Hills
11. Imperial Palace
While the inner grounds of the Imperial Palace itself are not usually open to the public, the surrounding area is quite the sight. Formerly the location of the Edo Castle, the Imperial Palace is next to various parks and gardens. One spot called the Chidorigafuchi is one of the top sakura spots in all of Tokyo, so if you’re in Tokyo during spring, definitely pop by here for your sakura shot!
Location: Imperial Palace
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12. Tokyo Tower
Take pictures of the Tokyo Tower, and in it as well. Both offer great picture spots. Going up this tower offers amazing landscape views of the city on the observation decks, both day and night. If you want a picture of the tower in the background of your picture, there’s a park right next to it, called Shiba Koen, and it’s definitely a great location for your snap!
Location: Tokyo Tower
13. Nezu Shrine
If you can’t make it to Kyoto on this trip, don’t worry about missing out on the Fushimi Inari Taisha. Tokyo has its own version of the Nezu Shrine. You still get your row of red torii gates here and they’re very picturesque!
Location: Nezu Shrine
14. Akasaka Palace
If you find yourself in Akasaka, stop by the Akasaka Palace. Described as the “Versailles of Tokyo”, this place is now the state guest house of the Government of Japan. The building looks extremely European but with subtle details of Japanese motifs.
Location: Akasaka Palace
15. Gotokuji Temple
Extremely underrated, Gotokuji Temple is such a cute spot with lots of beckoning cat statues. It’s often called ‘the cat temple’ because of that! If you’re looking for a less crowded picture spot, this is definitely one spot you should consider!
Location: Gotokuji Temple
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Kagurazaka, a stylish neighbourhood close to Shinjuku, is a photo spot in itself. The district is known for its fancy French restaurants, aesthetic boutiques and art galleries, which might be the reason why Kagurazaka is also called Little Paris. Roam around the streets here and you’re going to have more than a few gram-worthy pictures.
17. Tsukiji Fish Market
You might think that a fish market is the last place for aesthetic pictures, but Tsukiji Fish Market is an exception. Many restaurants in the city buy their products from this market! While the inner market is closed, the outer market is still open and bustling every morning. Grab a sushi snack while you’re at it!
Location: Tsukiji Fish Market
18. Hamarikyu Gardens
Pop by Hamarikyu Gardens after the fish market — they’re both located very close to each other. This garden is spectacular all year round, offering an escape into nature amidst the modern skyscrapers. Who doesn’t like to be surrounded by flower beds, traditional tea houses and a 300-year-old pine tree?
Location: Hamarikyu Gardens
19. Tokyo Dome
You don’t need to go to an event to get great shots at Tokyo Dome. While it would be great to go in the dome itself, the surrounding attractions are really picturesque, too. There’s a small amusement park with rides like a roller coaster and Ferris wheel, and also a beautiful garden nearby, called Koishikawa Korakuen,
Location: Tokyo Dome
Last but definitely not least, you need to get a few shots in Akihabara. This district is the biggest hub of anime and otaku culture. Not only are there dozens of electronic stores and manga-themed cafes that light up the night, but there are also many cosplayers roaming around the streets. Whether you’re an anime fan or not, you have to visit this neighbourhood at least once!
As you now know, Tokyo is one of the best places in the world for your Instagram photos. There’s a great balance of old and new landscapes that will definitely spice up your feed tremendously.
Mark your favourite photo spots on your map for your next Tokyo holiday!