As the capital, and largest city in the land of the rising sun, Tokyo is a world class metropolis known for its high tech sector, eccentric style scene and rich cultural history. It also holds the title of the most populated metropolitan area in the world with over 37,800,000 people in the Greater Tokyo Area comprising 23 wards, 26 cities, 5 towns, and 8 villages. So what makes Tokyo such a special city? We combed through Instagram to find some of Tokyo’s most famous landmarks photographed by local Instagrammers.
Known as “Fujisan” to locals, the picturesque snow-capped Mount Fuji is often the subject of paintings and photographs. Located 100 km southwest of Tokyo, the iconic stratovolcano rises 3,776 meters (12,388 feet) above sea level and is sometimes visible from the Japanese capital depending on weather conditions.
Rising 634 metres (2,080 ft) above the Sumida area of Tokyo, the Tokyo Skytree is the world’s tallest freestanding tower and the world’s second tallest structure after Dubai’s Burj Khalifa. When designing the tower, architect Nikken Sekkei used an earthquake proof design technique inspired by traditional Japanese pagodas. The design consists of a cylindrical core made of reinforced concrete that is attached to the outer tower structure on the lower portion and to the frame on the upper part of the tower where oil dampers act as absorbing cushions during an earthquake.
Tokyo’s other sky high tower, shines like a beacon along the Tokyo skyline with its distinctive white and orange paint used to comply with international air safety regulations. Although it’s primarily used as a communication tower, the Tokyo Tower is also a major tourist attraction with approximately 3 million visitors annually.
Fuji TV Headquarters
Completed in 1996, the Fuji TV building in Tokyo’s Minato district boasts a unique and futuristic exterior architecture by Japanese Pritzker Prize winning architect Kenzō Tange. The building has 25 floors aboveground, 2 underground, and a series of pedestrian bridges or “sky corridors” connecting two office towers. However, it’s most eye catching feature is the spherical, space pod-like, observation platform near the top.
Tokyo Gate Bridge
Tokyo’s building’s aren’t the only structures that feature unique and eye popping designs. Spanning 2,618 meters across Tokyo Bay, the Tokyo Gate Bridge is a truss cantilever bridge nicknamed the “Dinosaur Bridge’ for its profile resembling two T-Rexs facing each other. The design was a result of the requirement for the bridge to be high enough to allow large ships to pass underneath, but low enough to accommodate air traffic to and from the nearby Haneda Airport.
Shibuya is a popular ward in Tokyo that’s famous for its scrambled pedestrian crossing. One of the busiest of its kind in the world, the crossing is often compared to New York’s Times Square for its heavy traffic, flashing LCD screens, and giant advertisements.