Hotels in Takadanobaba

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What you should know about Takadanobaba

Takadanobaba is one of Tokyo's more lively inner suburbs, busy during the day with the to and fro of crowds of commuters, and then packed at night with the party crowd from the nearby universities. It owes this popularity to being at the crossing of 4 of Tokyo's main railway lines, as well as having 3 big universities all within a train stop of this west Tokyo district. The result is a thriving downtown area, brimming with interesting shops, buzzing restaurants, and welcoming bars.

Hotels in Takadanobaba

Accommodation in Takadanobaba is scattered far and wide across this neighborhood and adjoining areas, but does includes some real gems. Directly overlooking the train station is Hotel Sunroute Takadanobaba, a large Takadanobaba hotel much liked by reviewers for its considerate service and closeness to downtown's buzz. A different atmosphere can be found at the Ryokan Takemine in nearby Nakaochiai. This contemporary take on the ryokan (Japanese guest house) is perfectly styled, complete with tatami mats, comfortable futons and elegant minimalist furnishings. The RIHGA Royal Hotel Tokyo is another contrast. This four-star Takadanobaba hotel features sumptuous 18th-century décor, richly furnished and spacious rooms, and luxury spa facilities.

Things to see in Takadanobaba

Takadanobaba may seem like the kind of a neighborhood where you find things to do, rather than things to see, but there are some intriguing sights here nevertheless. The Ana Hachimangu Shrine is a real stand-out, a serenely elegant Shinto shrine that's said to be 1,000 years old. Standing in a wooded idyll, it's noted for its Buddha image, an interesting example of Buddhist-Shinto fusion. There's culture to be had at the Tsubouchi Memorial Theatre Museum, which is modeled on a Shakespearean theater. It tells the story of theater in Japan and across the globe. Takadanobaba played an important part in the shogun era of Japan, with legendary samurai Horibe Yasubei (one of the 47 ronin or master-less samurai) undertaking a notorious duel here in 1694. That past is remembered at the Toyama Park, where horseback archery demonstrations are held every October. The 150-foot wooded hill known as Hakone-san is also a highlight, and allegedly the tallest “mountain” in inner Tokyo.

Good for the young-at-heart and general travelers

Despite its quirky attractions and historical connections, it is Takadanobaba’s appeal as a student neighborhood that is its biggest draw. The downtown area is famed for its izakayas (after-work bars), pubs, and cheap ramen-ya (noodle restaurants). The surrounding campuses offer plenty of facilities for younger travelers too, from sports grounds to gaming arcades. But that youthful vibe isn't only reason travelers come here. Stay at a hotel in Takadanobaba and you have an affordable and pleasant base for enjoying everything the Japanese capital has to offer. Its excellent rail links mean that attractions in both central Tokyo and Takadanobaba's western neighborhoods are easy to reach.

How to get to Takadanobaba

Although it's on the western side of Tokyo—the opposite side to the city's main international airport in Narita—travel to Takadanobaba is surprisingly quick and efficient. The Skyliner express train service from Narita International usefully skirts past much of central Tokyo. So after a change at Nippori station to the JR Yamanote Line, you'll arrive at Takadanobaba Station in just over an hour. Once here, you can get back into central Tokyo on the metro's Tozai Line. Or, if you'd like to visit western attractions like Shinjuku or Yoyogi Park, you can take the JR Yamanote Line southward.

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