I wouldn’t call Sky View a real observatory, but it offers some good views of Tokyo Bay. It is a small lounge-type area, just a few windows wide, on the restaurant floor, forty-six floors up, in the Caretta Shiodome building. If you want a viewing spot that is free and near the bay area, this is the best place to go and to top it off - it has an awesome elevator ride!
The viewing windows are about ten meters across and divided into three sections that give roughly a 170° field of view. From them, you can see Rainbow bridge, the Odaiba area, Toyosu, the old Tsukiji fish markets (mostly demolished), Kachidoki bridge, the Harumi passenger ship terminal and Hama-Rikyu Gardens – all enormously interesting. It is a great view, day or night. However, if you want to see towards the city center, you’ll have to enter one of the restaurants or bars that face that direction. Just remember that when you ride the elevator up the Sky Lounge to turn around and enjoy the view as it is definitely one of the best elevator rides in Tokyo – great during the day, but fantastic at night.
I think Sky View is really good, but it could have been fantastic, if it had that all round view. Still, it is worth going to enjoy the sights with what it currently offers. And while you are there you can also enjoy some great restaurants and bars. If you go in December, also know that Caretta Shiodome puts on a great Christmas light show that is tremendously popular. You can see the building’s website here.
How to get to Caretta Shiodome’s Sky View
Shinbashi is the closest station and several different JR and subway lines pass through it, including the Yamanote and Ginza. From the station, the Caretta Shiodome/Denstu building is about a ten-minute walk away. It’s a very easy to find as the Dentsu building is so iconic.
Here is a Google map to show you:
Once in the building take the elevator, which is in the basement (level 2) up to the forty-sixth floor. Parking is available.
Caretta Shiodome’s Sky View lounge and restaurant floors are open from 11 am to 11:30 pm. The lower shopping areas are open from 10 am to 8 pm.
If you liked this article, you might also enjoy:
Jindai Botanical Gardens - the most beautiful rose garden in the city
National Museum of Nature and Science – a great museum located in the popular Ueno area
Omiya Hachiman - one of Tokyo's local shrines
Tower Hall Funabori – another of Tokyo’s free observatories
Zoshigaya cemetery – one of Tokyo large cemeteries and actually, a great place for a walk