Have you ever heard about Japanese Shotengai??
It’s shopping street.
In this article, I’ll introduce one of famous Shotengai in Tokyo.
About 5 minutes walk from Nippori Station west entrance, entrance gate appears.
Gate is described as “Yanaka Ginza”.
Yanaka is place name.
Ginza is symbolic name of lively shopping street.
Ginza at Chuo ward is so lively place. There is the most sophisticated shopping street in Japan.
So in Japan, many shopping streets are named ~ Ginza in honor of Ginza at Chuo ward.
There are About 100 places ~ Ginza shopping street only in Tokyo!!
Before walking through gate, there is steps. This steps is called “Yuyake Dandan”.
“Yuyake” means sunset. “Dandan(段々or 段段 )” means steps. Originally Dan(段) means one step.
So Dandan means continuous steps.
That’s why here is steps can enjoy beautiful sunset.
I’ll introduce that scenery late in this article.
Coming from steps, “Dandan” means gradual changing in Japanese.
This day was beautiful sunny Saturday. So there were so many visitors!
Street is 175m long, width is 5~6m, 70 shops and stores are located along the street!
Yanaka Ginza is famous for meat store’s croquette.
There was long line to buy croquette.
Some meat shops selling croquette. So it is better to find short line store.
Each store is delicious!
Next to croquette store, many autographs of celebrities. They have visit here. Yanaka Ginza is popular.
There are variety of shops. You will be able to find interesting souvenir.
Originally, shotengai is place for daily life.
People visit there to buy daily food or household goods.
But here is becoming to one of travel destination.
Here is mixing place for daily life and travel destination, especially weekend.
So I want to tell readers that Yanaka Ginza is exciting and fun place, but not typical shotengai.
Actually many shotengai at local places in Japan is closing day by day.
They are called shutter street.
Huge shopping mall built at suburb is robbing customer from shotengai.
In fact, it is convenient. Huge shopping mall has broad parking lot, many kind of stores.
So Japanese local shotengai is suffering.
But there are many lively shotengai in Japan.
They still supporting daily life of living people.
I want you to visit those lively shotengai for daily life too!
Let’s back to Yanaka Ginza. I found cat’s statue. I didn’t know why it is here. But later the reason appeared.
Small alley. Japanese sweets shop was there. But this day was sold out!
Narrow sky from alley.
Yuyake Dandan from shopping street.
Sunset was coming. I returned to Yuyake Dandan.
So beautiful sunset…also, so many photographers. Many people walk here. So it is better not to use tripod.
The reason of cat’s statue appeared. This cat is icon of here. But he is a little shy. It’s difficult for me to take his face!
It getting dark. Some people stop on steps to take photos.
Shotengai is still lively.
Tokyo is surrounded by buildings. So to see sunset from ground is difficult. Here is a little better from other places.
This day was crescent moon.
A day ends with people’s life.
* Here are no toilet. So I recommend to use station’s toilet!
* Please do not take a picture of people without saying anything
* Don’t take picture at prohibited store.
Yanaka Ginza Shopping Street
Nippori Station (about 5 minutes walk) / JR Line, Joban Line, Toneri Liner, Keisei Line
Sendagi Station (about 5 minutes walk) / Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line
Holidays: Depend on shops
Entrance Fee: Free
Address: 3-13-1 Yanaka, Taito-Ku,Tokyo,Japan
Web: Yanaka Ginza Shopping Street (Japanese only)