Odaiba at a glance
Odaiba is built on reclaimed land that was originally constructed in 1853 to strengthen the city’s defenses and protect it from a sea attack by Mathew Perry’s Black Ships. The word daiba means fort or battery, and comes from the cannon installations that were placed on the island. The area was expanded in the 1980’s during Japan’s bubble economy, but sat empty and lifeless when the bubble burst in the early 1990’s.
Major development began again at the end of the 20th century and Odaiba has been transformed into a large residential, commercial and amusement district.Today, Odaiba is the most popular leisure destination in Tokyo and is home to some of the city’s most futuristic architecture. With shopping and entertainment centers, parks, beaches, museums, theme parks, and one of the worlds largest ferris wheels (115 meters tall), the area has something for everyone.
Odaiba is located in Tokyo Bay, across the waters from central Tokyo. Traffic travels to and from the city via the Rainbow Bridge. The island is also connected by the Yurikamome – an automated elevated train that look like something out of a science fiction movie. The Yurikamome runs from Shimbashi Station to most of Odaiba’s attractions, also stopping at Toyosu Station on the subway’s Yurakucho Line.Tokyo’s main hub for ferries, Ariake Ferry Terminal, is located next to Odaiba.
How to get to Odiaba
Odaiba can be reached from Tokyo by train, bridge, tunnel, and boat. The Yurikamome transit system has service to Odaiba from Shimbashi and Toyosu, while the underground Rinkai Line connects the island with Shibuya, Shinjuku, and Ikebukuro. Suijo Bus ferries service Odaiba via Hinode Pier and Asakusa. Pedestrians can also walk over the Rainbow Bridge, though the heavy traffic leaves you smelling foul air for the 40 minute trip.