{Japan: Explore} 20 Minutes or Less in Shibuya, Tokyo

Shibuya

On my 2008 Japan trip, my younger brother came along with M and I.  As it was his very first visit to Japan and we only had a week in Tokyo, we were constantly on the move, trying to cover as much of the city as humanly possible.  At first I was thinking that we wouldn’t even bother to go by Shibuya.  But the more I thought about it, the more I wanted my brother to at least see Hachiko’s statue and the famous Scramble Crossing aka The Busiest Intersection in the World.  That day we were planning to go to Disney Sea and get in right at 6 using their special discounted passport.  Since it was already late in the afternoon, I figured we only had 20 minutes or less to see Shibuya before we had to catch a train to Maihama.

At Shibuya Station, we got off the train and headed for the Hachiko exit:

Hachiko exit

Hachiko

Hachiko’s Bronze Statue

Hachiko is without a doubt the most famous Japanese dog to have ever lived.  He used to meet his owner, a professor, at Shibuya Station every day after work and walk home with him.  Unfortunately, one day, the professor passed away while at work.  But, until the day he died, faithful Hachiko still showed up daily at the station in the hopes that he would see his owner once again.  There is not only a statue for Hachiko at this station exit. but the walls are decorated with his likeness:

Shibuya Hachiko

Shibuya station

After snapping a few pictures of my brother with the Hachiko Statue, we made our way to the street corner to do the Shibuya scramble crossing.  There were already loads of people at each intersection waiting for the light to change.  In mere moments, there was a sudden shift in energy as everyone began moving quickly to get to their intended destination.  Even in the madness of people swirling all around me, I was able to get a couple pictures of my brother and those are really my favorites of him from that trip.  As happens so often in our travels, it’s the things that you weren’t initially planning on doing that turn out to be the most memorable.

Once on the other side of the street, we collected ourselves and prepared to face the scramble crossing again and return to the station.

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Photo credit: lestaylorphoto / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA