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Asia > East Asia > Japan > Kanto > Tokyo (prefecture) > Tokyo > Tokyo/Minato

Tokyo/Minato

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Location of Minato-ku

Minato (港区) is a ward in central Tokyo. The name means "port", referring to its seaside location, although due to reclamation many areas in the district are quite far from the sea these days.

Understand[edit]

Minato is a fairly sprawling ward with no single center. It is known as a very wealthy part of Tokyo and home to most of Tokyo's foreign embassies, many of its large multinational corporations and a number of prestigious universities.

The following parts of Minato have their own articles:

  • Akasaka - a business district and nightlife area near the government center
  • Odaiba - the Tokyo of the future built on reclaimed land in Tokyo Bay
  • Roppongi - Tokyo's hub for contemporary art and nightlife
  • Shiodome - a still-growing cluster of brand new skyscrapers
  • Shinbashi - an older business and commercial district

Get in[edit]

By train[edit]

  • Hamamatsuchō (浜松町), terminus of the Tokyo Monorail from Haneda Airport; the closest station on the Yamanote to Tokyo Tower (10-min walk) and Roppongi (25-min walk).
  • Daimon (大門), By underground station Asakusa line and Oedo line.

By bus[edit]

By boat[edit]

See[edit]

Tokyo Tower and the temple of Zōjōji
  • 1 Tokyo Tower (東京タワー Tōkyō Tawā) (the nearest station is Akabanebashi (5-min walk) although Hamamatsucho and Daimon are accessible through several lines and only slightly farther away). 9AM-10PM daily. This was a newly re-industrialized Japan's 1958 answer to Paris's Eiffel Tower — a bit more modern-looking and 9 m taller. Entry to the Main Observatory (150 m) is ¥820, while ascending to the Special Observatory (250 m) is an extra ¥600. It also comprise One Piece-themed entertainment zone. The Tokyo SkyTree tower, opened in 2012 in Sumida ward, is twice as high. You'll get also better views from higher up for free if you visit Shinjuku's Metropolitan Government Building observatory instead. Tip: To get a good view of, and picture with, the tower, try the courtyard in front of Zojoji (nearby), or the second-floor deck outside the Mori Tower at Roppongi Hills (farther away but more panoramic). Tokyo Tower on Wikipedia Tokyo Tower (Q183536) on Wikidata
  • 2 Zōjō-ji Temple (増上寺), Shibakoen 4-7-35 (Toei Mita Line Onarimon station). This grand old temple is the headquarters of the Jōdo-shū sect and houses the graves of 6 of the Tokugawa shoguns, but is a little off the beaten track and is rarely visited by tourists. Particularly beautiful around cherry blossom time. It hosts a variety of religious and non-religious festivals throughout the year Zōjō-ji on Wikipedia Zōjō-ji (Q249139) on Wikidata
  • 3 Sengaku-ji (泉岳寺), Takanawa 2-11-1 (Toei Asakusa Line Sengakuji station exit A2), e-mail: . A temple most famous as the resting place of the 47 Rōnin, a famous group of samurai who banded together to avenge their unfairly slain master. Having obtained the head of the offender, they brought it to this very temple and then were condemned to commit ritual suicide, like their master. The story is told in Chūshingura, the best-known of all Kabuki plays. History aside, the temple isn't much to look at, but the small museum has artifacts from the event and after, including wooden statues of all the ronin, the banner that the ronin posted during their raid, original letters, and the receipt that the priests wrote out for the head. The graves are a popular site of pilgrimage to this day. Sengaku-ji on Wikipedia Sengaku-ji (Q3176144) on Wikidata
  • 4 Institute for Nature Study (自然教育園), 5-21-5 Shirokanedai, Minato-ku (adjacent to Teien Art Museum), +81 3 3441-7176, fax: +81 3 3441-7012, e-mail: . Sep 1-Apr 30: 9AM-4:30PM, May 1-Aug 31: 9AM-5PM; closed Mondays, closed Dec 28-Jan 4. A 200,000 sq m nature preserve in the heart of the city, with birds and waterfowl, insects and marine life. Adults ¥300, senior citizens and children free. Institute for Nature Study (Q5557026) on Wikidata
  • 5 Rainbow Bridge. Completed on 26 Aug 1993, this gateway to Odaiba is among the most beautiful modern bridges in Japan. Decorated with 444 lights, which change according to the seasons. Rainbow Bridge (Tokyo) on Wikipedia Rainbow Bridge (Q1046736) on Wikidata

Museums[edit]

  • 6 Tokyo Metropolitan Teien Art Museum (東京都庭園美術館) (five minutes from the East exit). Art museum housed in a classic Art Deco style structure, connected to a small park with Japanese and Western gardens and outdoor sculptures. Tokyo Metropolitan Teien Art Museum on Wikipedia Tokyo Metropolitan Teien Art Museum (Q743773) on Wikidata
  • 7 Nezu Museum, 6-5-1 Minamiaoyama, +81 3-3400-2536. Showcases the private art collection of Nezu Kaichirō with many pieces from the Edo period. Nezu Museum on Wikipedia Nezu Museum (Q1047097) on Wikidata
  • 8 Taro Okamoto Memorial Museum, 6-1-19 Minamiaoyama (8 minutes from Omotesando station on foot.), +81 3-3406-0801. Studio and house of Okamoto Taro are exhibited. He made numerous masterpieces. For example, taiyonotou. Unfinished work or paint which he used are leaved. Taro Okamoto Memorial Museum (Q11473108) on Wikidata
  • 9 TEPIA, 2 Chome-8-44 Kitaaoyama. Tu-Su 10AM-6PM, closed on holidays. Science museum showcasing new technologies, robots, home automation. Explanations are in Japanese but playing with the objects is still fun for kids and adults. Free. TEPIA (Q11319358) on Wikidata

Do[edit]

  • Tokyo Water Cruise. Plies the Sumida River and Tokyo Bay between Hamamatsucho, Odaiba, Asakusa and other points. Fares vary depending on routing.

Buy[edit]

  • Tokyo HackerSpace, Shirokanedai 5-11. Tu 7:30-9PM. Community space for working on projects. The Tuesday evening meeting is open. Hackers, tinkerers, and makers passing through town might want to drop by then. Many events and classes held at other times, some are kid-friendly. Check website for detailed schedule.
  • 1 Tokyo Island Cafe (東京愛らんど Tōkyō Airando), 1-12-2 Kaigan (in Takeshiba Passenger Ship Terminal), +81 3-5472-6559. Daily 7:30AM-10:30PM. Antenna shop of Izu Isands and Ogasawara Islands.
  • 2 Azabu-Jūban (麻布十番). A quieter commercial district to the southeast of Roppongi Hills, and a good place to spend a lazier afternoon browsing through shops and enjoying the local cafés. The surrounding residential area is popular among professional expats, so expect to see many international families as you walk through. Azabu-Jūban, Minato, Tokyo on Wikipedia Azabu-Jūban (Q4832008) on Wikidata
  • 3 Japan Sake and Shōchū Information Center, 1-1-21 Nishi-Shinbashi (10 min from Shimbashi station), +81 3-3519-2091. M-F 10AM-6PM, closed weekends and holidays. This four-story complex run by the Central Brewers' Union sells anything and everything related to sake, including cups, glasses, books, hydrometers and, of course, the nectar itself. ¥315/515 gets you a taste of 3/5 sakes that change daily.

Eat[edit]

Budget[edit]

  • 1 Minatoya (そば処港屋), Nishi-shinbashi 3-1-10, +81 3-5777-6921. Daily 11:30AM-5PM, 5:30-8PM. A soba shop that looks like a trendy club. At the corner opposite of Toranomon Hills, it is one of the most futuristic places where you can eat soba. Zero advertisement outside, just a 10-cm-high horizontal window running along the facade, and a tiny plaque the size of a business card, just reading "Minatoya". Enter to discover the black interior and the water basin around which customers eat, standing. Expect a long queue. Free raw eggs to put in your soup. ¥600.

Lunch boxes from supermarkets is another good option to save some money

  • 2 Gourmet City, Azabujuban 2-5-9 (Between Azabujuban station and Hills, at the middle of Azabujuban's shopping street). 24 hours daily. Two-stores of food, drinks and more. Cheapest supermarket in the whole area.
  • 3 Kua'aina, Minami-Aoyama 1-10-4 (off of Omotesando), +81 3-3409-3200. Daily 10AM-11PM. Hawaiian hamburgers, order-at-the counter from a picture menu with English. Meal sets are available for ¥1000, higher after 5PM.

Mid-range[edit]

  • 4 Worldstar Cafe, 5-1-3 Roppongi, B1F Goto Bldg. Daily 11AM–8AM daily. Popular with business people or singles during lunchtime. Meal sets are ¥980–1200, comes w/ main, salad, drink; main being spaghetti, etc. Useful for a late night spot to hang around, since they're open until 6AM.
  • 5 Gonpachi (権八), Nishi-Azabu 1-13-11 (Nishi-Azabu crossing, 5 min from Roppongi station), +81 3 5771-0170. This lively and popular izakaya, with a spectacular spacious interior and high-profile location, has served luminaries such as George W. Bush and former Prime Minister Koizumi, and was the model for the battle scene in Tarantino's "Kill Bill". (The owner turned down the director's request to use the place itself.) Apart from this, it is a chain, so prices are reasonable food is not special, with all-you-can-drink deals from ¥1500, noodles and rice dishes for under ¥1000 and 6-course menus from ¥3500. Make reservations and expect to see a lot of foreign visitors.
  • 6 Sarashina (麻布永坂 更科本店), +81 3-3584-9410. One of the most famous restaurants for soba (buckwheat noodle). Try the various noodles they have, for instance egg noodles, with different colors. Their factory is still across the road despite sky-rocketing real estate prices. ¥2000 for lunch.
  • 7 [dead link] Tony Roma's, 5-4-20 Roppongi (next to Hard Rock Cafe), +81 3 3408-2748. Step out of Japan and into the United States; the bilingual staff and English-only menu might make you forget you are in Tokyo. The restaurant features their trademark ribs, worth the price which approaches ¥2000. The Texas Mud Pie is the cure for tiny Japanese desserts.
  • 9 Nodaiwa (野田岩), 1-5-4 Higashi-Azabu (Nearest subway stops are KamiyachōH-05.png, 550 meters north, and AkabanebashiE-21.png, 400 meters south.), +81 3-3583-7852. M-Sa 11AM-1:30PM, 5-8PM. Perhaps the best spot in Japan to be served unagi, or freshwater eel. In the business for 160 years, Nodaiwa remains as popular as ever. Around ¥4000 for lunch, ¥6000-10,000 for dinner.
  • 10 Anniversaire Cafe, +81 3-5411-5988. This is a fashonable cafe of Paris style. You can enjoy elegant mood with seeing a row of houses and street of Omotesando. You can also choose fish or meat for lunch

Splurge[edit]

  • 11 Daigo (醍醐), Atago 2 chome 3-1, Atago Green Hills Forest Tower, 2F, Atago (from the Ginza-sen Toranomon station, exit 10, east 60 m along Sotoboridori to the Shimbashi 1chome intersection, then south (right) 500 m along Iwada-dori), +81 3-3431-0811. Daily: lunch 11:30AM-2PM, dinner 5-8PM. Exquisite vegetarian or vegan "shojin ryori" cuisine. This is the traditional Buddhist spin on kaiseki. Gracefully served by attentive kimono-clad staff. Small private dining rooms look out onto Japanese gardens. Very expensive, but a top-class experience. Lunch ¥10,000 - Dinner ¥20,000-25,000 per person.
  • 12 Narisawa, 2-6-15 Minamiaoyama, +81 3-5785-0799. Ranked among the world's best restaurants and with two Michelin stars. Except a blend of classical French techniques with the finest Japanese ingredients. Narisawa also has a commitment to sustainability, which expresses itself at the table. Menus from ¥20,000.
  • 13 Petit Point, 4-2-48, Minami-Azabu (3 min south of Hiroo station), +81 3-3440-3667. Superbly prepared French cuisine. Expect to pay about ¥15,000 for a full dinner.
  • 14 Ristorante da Nino, Grande Maison Nogizaka 1F, 1-15-19 Minami Aoyama, +81 3 3401-9466. M–Sa 11:30AM–2PM, 6-11PM. Within easy walking distance from both Tokyo Midtown and Roppongi crossing, owner chef Antonino Lentini offers fine and fresh sicilian dishes. Good wine selection. Weekday lunch courses from ¥1400 (Saturday lunch courses from ¥2800); dinner courses from ¥8000.

Drink[edit]

Clubs[edit]

  • 1 Muse, 4-1-1 Nishi-Azabu (follow the expressway from Roppongi Crossing past Roppongi Hills, and keep an eye out on your left), +81 3 5467-1188. Many expats argue that "you can't lose at Muse," a multi-level, multi-room below-ground establishment which, in addition to bars, dance floors, and VIP rooms, also has karaoke, ping-pong and pool tables. Cover charge ¥3,000 w/ 2 drinks for men and free w/out drinks for women (F and Sa); students can get drink discounts (except on Friday and Saturday nights) with ID.

Sleep[edit]

Mid-range[edit]

Splurge[edit]

  • 2 Hotel Okura, 2-10-4 Toranomon, +81 3-3582-0111, fax: +81 3-3582-3707. Luxury hotel that has been host to many celebrities since its opening in 1962. It closed for an extensive renovation that will see the current building, by many considered a modernist masterpiece, torn down and replaced by a high-rise. Projected to re-open in Sep 2019.
  • 3 Sheraton Miyako, 1-1-50, Shirokanedai, Minato-ku, Tokyo 108-8640, +81-3-3447-3111. Reasonably swish hotel. Good for a layover with its back garden and downstairs cigar bar. Probably a poor option for a tourist unless you have business in the area as it's about a ten minute walk from nearby transport and not close to attractions.
  • 4 Tokyo Prince Hotel, 3-3-1 Shibakoen (300 meters from the Akabanebashi station on the O-Edo line), +81 3 3432-1111. Check-in: 2PM, check-out: 11AM. If you insist on staying in a "western" hotel near Roppongi, and have to stay within a budget (under ¥20,000 per night), the Tokyo Prince Hotel is one of your few options. The hotel is almost at the base of the Tokyo Tower and is located in a quiet, tree-lined neighborhood just a 15-minute walk from the action in Roppongi. The hotel staff speak English, and the hotel has the amenities of its modern competitors. But it is a bit of a throwback. The beds are short, the decor is tacky, and everything (except the DSL) feels a little dated. From ¥13,500.

Cope[edit]

  • 1 Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau (Exit JR Shinagawa Station on the Konan side, look to your left, and follow the signs to bus platform 8 serving Immigration), +81 3-5796-7112. M-F 9AM-noon and 1PM-4PM. This center serves foreign residents and long-term visitors. Also houses immigration detention. If going in the morning, get there early because a line forms outside long before opening hours.

Connect[edit]

Go next[edit]

Routes through Minato
UenoAkihabaraTokyo  N JR JY line symbol.svg W  ShinagawaGotandaShibuya
KawaguchiAkabaneUeno  N JR JK line symbol.svg S  KamataKawasakiTsurumi
Shibuya  W Subway TokyoGinza.png N  GinzaSuehirochoUeno
Naka MeguroEbisu  W Subway TokyoHibiya.png N  GinzaTsukijiUeno
Meijijingumae  W Subway TokyoChiyoda.png N  NijubashimaeYushimaKitasenju
Nishi MagomeGotanda  W Subway TokyoAsakusa.png E  Higashi GinzaAsakusaOshiage
Meguro  W Subway TokyoMita.png N  JinbochoKasugaSugamo
ToshimaenHigashi NakanoShinjuku  W Subway TokyoOedo.png N  Tsukiji marketKiyosumi-ShirakawaRyogoku
END  W Yurikamome line symbol.svg E  DaibaToyosu


This district travel guide to Minato is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.