Tokyo’s Shibuya Crossing! The World’s Busiest Intersection! Tokyo’s Amazing Subways!

Welcome To Tokyo’s Busiest Intersection!

Of the many wonders of Tokyo, perhaps the most enjoyable is a trip to the iconic “Shibuya crossing” – the world’s busiest intersection!

It’s almost impossible to capture the energy and organized chaos of crossing this street – an intersection that fills with people every two minutes all day and night in Tokyo!

us in shibuya

My wife Alex and son Jeff headed to Tokyo last year, and Ive shared many of those adventures – but I also wanted to share some pictures and video of our time in Shibuya Crossing, where crowds of people cross the street in an bit of organized mayhem that is legendary:

Shibuya crossing crowdd

As I’ve said, even though it’s amazingly crowded at all hours of the day and night, it’s not claustrophobic – and people are in great spirits everywhere you turn! We loved taking pictures and videos there, including this panorama shot at night:

One of the best spots to capture the fun is from the second story window at Starbucks, which overlooks the crossing -there’s some great movie trivia about this sport – which I will share in a moment – first, grab a seat:

From this vantage point, you can see the entire intersection – here is a look at the crossing from above, and yes, I know this nice Japanese kid’s head is in the shot but don’t worry I zoom in at some point:

I also shot some video from ground level – even though there are throngs of people, it’s quiet – Tokyo isn’t a loud city…

I also filmed at the Shibuya crossing with G4 – and Kevin Pereira and Olivia Munn danced with the “Dancing Stormtrooper” in the middle of the intersection!

You can see that story here:

For many, they saw Tokyo’s iconic Shibuya crossing up close for the first time in the great Bill Murray comedy “Lost In Translation” with Scarlett Johansson:

This is one of my favorite movies, beautifully directed by Sofia Coppola – here is some great trivia about making the movie – they “stole” the Shibuya shots!

That’s right, on the DVD, they reveal they had no permits to film, they just stole the wide shot from that Starbucks window I was at!

See more great “Lost In Translation” trivia here:

The streets are very crowded in Tokyo, but there’s no jostling or shoving – it’s an incredibly polite, organized and quiet city- but there are a lot of people!

I stood on a corner in the Shinjuku district, waiting for the light to turn green, and this is what I saw – waiting to cross the street:

Tokyo street crowds

When you see this mass of humanity headed your way, you just have to stay alert and focused – it’s part of what makes Tokyo unique. Again, everyone is polite!

And this is what a subway train looks like in rush hour:

Tokyo crowded subway

We were part of a late night mob scene in the subway at Shibuya, taking the short train ride back to the Shinjuku district…

Perhaps, like us, they were headed to the famous “Golden Gai” bar district – more than 280 tiny bars in just over three city blocks!

It was here that another magical thing happened: my son had befriended a bartender – not through talking, since they didn’t know each other’s language – but through music! That led to him grabbing his guitar and singing an original song to us! Check it out:

The Golden Gai district is amazing – see more of our adventures there by clicking on my story here:

Lots of people and lots of fun in Tokyo – let me know if you’ve crossed Shibuya yourself!

Categories: Action Films, Art, Books / Media, documentary films, Exotic Travel, Funny Pictures, Japan, Memoirs, Talent/Celebrities, Technology, Tokyo!, Travel, Travel Adventures, Travel Memoir, TV Show, Uncategorized, Wacky Food

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7 replies

  1. Ohhh my, that looks crazy! My husband and I would really like to visit Tokyo in the next couple of years, and I think if I tell him there is 280 bars in close proximity, he will be booking the tickets! Im in London most days and I assure you, that is not always so polite! thanks for sharing,

  2. Just wow! My dream is to go to Japan one day. I am eyeing Tokyo and Kyoto in particular. Now I will know what to expect. I knew Tokyo’s junctions must get busy, but I never imagined them as busy as you show! Insightful post, thank you.

  3. I enjoyed the videos, John. That sure is a busy junction. It’s a wonder the traffic gets a chance to progress through it. London’s busiest crossing is at Oxford Circus. They adopted the idea from Tokyo, to improve it. Nowhere near as busy as the Japanese capital though.
    Best wishes, Pete.

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