One year after its opening, me and my husband finally made it to SkyTree. This is one of those you visit once in your life and never go back. What for, unless you’re taking someone else. Besides, it is quite expensive.
There are 2 ways to purchase tickets to SkyTree. One is through online advance reservation that only accepts cards issued in Japan and another is queuing the whole day. We, of course, the ever practical and lazy ones, prefer the internet purchase. The sad part is, it was a one month wait. So we purchased around end of May for tickets around end of June. But who cares, right? It’s not like we are going to die if we don’t get to Sky Tree right away. Good things come to those who wait
Like many things in Japan, the advance ticket purchase doesn’t make sense. You would think that an advance ticket purchase would be much cheaper. Yes, in many parts of the world – but definitely not in SkyTree. Advance purchase is more expensive, but I guess the logic is it saves you more time (like instead of queuing for 5 hours, you wait for one month). in any case, as I said, this is a one-time-big-time deal. I don’t plan on going back so let’s go all out.
There are two levels in Sky Tree. The JPY2500 goes only for the first level viewing deck, the “Tokyo Skytree Tembo Deck” with a height of 350 meters. The second level is “Tokyo Skytree Tembo Galleria”, with a height of 450 meters and will cost you another JPY1000.
We went to both.
The elevator takes only 15 seconds to shoot upwards to the Tembo deck. When we got there – no surprise at all – the Tembo deck is filled with 10,000,000 people, being a weekend and all. Everyone has to go walk around clock-wise.Of course, all front row “seats” (be warned, there were no seats of course) were taken up and you’d have to wait for someone to leave to be able to get close to the windows. And please forgive my photography – I took my GoPro without the LCD so I was shooting blind…
We went around once and decided, what the heck, let’s go to the Tembo Galleria. We’ll never come back ,after all. Let’s make the most of this. So we paid another JPY1000 and headed to the highest level.
There were less people in the Tembo Galleria, so more chances for photo opp. For additional JPY1200, we paid for our picture to be taken as we stood on glass floors. Then we left and went to the Asahi restaurant down below, from the windows of which you can view the now lit SkyTree.
We spent a good afternoon/evening in Skytree, but to be honest, we’ll probably never go back again. What for? Costs a lot of money. But one thing I realize is how little vegetation there is in Tokyo. From the eye-level, I see green everywhere, but from a distant, top view of Tokyo, you realize it is indeed one concrete jungle. Surprising, because I always thought Tokyo has a lot of parks. Anyway, be prepared for throngs of people during weekends. Book in advance but be sure to bring your credit card on the day of the visit. And lastly, don’t shoot blind.