TF Top 10……Sights Along The Keio Lines In Tokyo

The Keio Line principally connects Shinjuku to the western side of Tokyo with seven different lines running through to the likes of suburban city Hachiōji and the mountainous area at Takaosanguchi. All of it’s stations actually lie within the boundaries of Tokyo and Tokyo Fox has dug deep to come up with a list, in no particular order, that features some hidden gems mixed in with a few perennial favourites. Places alone such as Shinjuku, Shibuya, Kichijoji or even Shimo Kitazawa do not qualify.

1. Nakayasu Hotel @ Keiō-Hachiōji (KO34) – The origins of this building can be traced all the way back to 1950 when the owner set up a store which got developed 15-16 years later into a two storey hotel and inn. The expansion continued and was fully completed in 1972 when the Nakagin Capsule Tower was also finished. Both buildings are similar in appearance and style due to the individualistic lego block-like nature of each room. For me, the intense golden sandy colour is very Star Wars-like. More details here

2. Tokyo Racecourse (Tōkyō Keiba-jō)) @Fuchūkeiba-seimommae – The capital’s number one race track is home to the prestigious Japan Cup each November. Where else can you watch live sport for just 200 yen?! More details here

3. Yomiuri Land @ Keiō-Yomiuri-Land (KO37) – Tokyo’s largest amusement park is just 30 minutes from Shinjuku (plus time for the gondola ride to access the park) and in the summer season there are six pools to cool off in. 30+ amusement rides are on offer including spaghetti-type wooden and standing roller-coasters among others. Mount Arigata is also accessible from the station and worth quickly checking out for the rows and rows of densely-arranged little buddhist monuments. More details here

4. National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) Mitaka Campus @ Nishi-Chōfu (KO19) – NAOJ is the centre of Japanese Astronomy possessing world leading research facilities including exhibits, observatories, research facilities and museums with the highlight being the large 65 cm telescope dome. The simple designed symmetrically round building, with its fading and peeling cream colour paint, was completed in 1921 and houses Japan’s largest retractor telescope. More details here

5. Tama Zoo @ Tama-Dōbutsukōen – Far more spacious than the more famous one in Ueno and it’s highlight is probably the lion bus ride which takes tourists into the heart of the lion garden where they roam freely. It’s a very short ride lasting under ten minutes but with Kenya a long way away this is about as close to going ‘on safari’ as most visitors will ever get! More details here

6. Ajinomoto Stadium @ Tobitakyū (KO20) – The home of FC Tokyo and Tokyo Verdy is one of Japan’s most accessible stadiums as it’s a very short walk from the nearest station. It can hold around 50,000 fans and was used a few times in the 2019 Rugby World Cup. More details here

7. Takahata Fudo Temple @ Takahatafudō (KO29) – It’s all about the setting for this large temple complex in the mountains. They are located behind the temple and feature 88 little jizo statues along it’s many hiking routes which is a far easier and quicker alternative to the 88 temple pilgrimage on Shikoku (Japan’s fourth largest main island). The temple is at it’s best in Autumn when the leaves are in full colour. More details here

8. Mount Takao @ Takaosanguchi (KO53) – No surprises here. The world’s busiest mountain is one of the most popular getaways for people living in central Tokyo. There are eight hiking courses and, depending on which route you take, sights along the way include a suspension bridge, waterfalls, hundred-year-old cedars, a monkey park, temples, shrines and statues galore. It’s only 599 metres tall but the majority of visitors just seem to take the cable car or chair lift to near the summit. More details here

9. Keio Rail Land @ Tama-Dōbutsukōen – Adjacent to Tama Zoo is this very child-friendly railway museum with its Tomica Playrail room where each kid is given a couple of their own model train sets to build within a time limit. There’s also a ball pit, toy rail-track to lay out, uniforms to put on, a diorama and a mini train outdoors which circles the six Keio line railcars of various vintages. Please note that there is practically no information available in English at this one. More details here

10. Toko-ji Temple @ Keio Nagayama – The Senju Peace Kannon towers over this part of Machida city and it’s shape is supposedly reminiscent of the Tower of Babel. As you approach the temple, it just looks like a regular one on first glance but your eyes are soon diverted to the 16 armed kannon statue towering above it. More details here

Bonus: Keio Mogusaen @ Mogusaen (KO28) – The thatch roofed Shoren-an is surrounded by peaceful scenery including a pond in the shape of the Japanese character for heart. Maple leaves in Autumn, wisteria in May and plum blossoms in February and early March are the highlights. More details here

There are a few interesting and unique modern architectural buildings dotted at places along the Keio Line and more details on the three below can be read here, here and here


Click here to read ‘Tokyo Daytripper: Tokyo’s Newest Big Buddha Statue’

Click here to read ‘Dining Out: The “Pie Ramen” Restaurant’

Click here to read ‘Tokyo Daytripper: Machida Squirrel Garden’

Click here to read ‘Tokyo Daytripper: Before And After Ome’

About tokyofox

A Leicester City fan teaching English in Japan
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