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When you look at the same old city from a different perspective, from high up above, there is always something new to be discovered.  A sweeping view of the majestic nature can cleanse your soul.
Tripadvisor published a list of 20 special places to enjoy wonderful views in Japan, and in this article we would like to introduce you to all 20 of them.  Maybe some of them will be near the destination of your next vacation!

1. Kiyomizu-dera [Kyoto]

 

Sushicam/Flickr

Kiyomizu-dera is one of the top attractions of Kyoto.  It is famous for the brilliant colors of four seasons, cherry blossoms in the spring, deep green of the summer, bright leaves of the autumn, and the snow covered winter white, all can be admired from the famous deck.  Nocturnal visits are held three times a year, in these occasions the structure is illuminated, perfect opportunity for a romantic occasion.

Open from 6:00-18:00

Admission: Adult, High school student ¥400; Elementary, jr. high student ¥200

HP: www.kiyomizudera.or.jp/en/

HP: www.kiyomizudera.or.jp/lang/02.html (中文)

HP: www.kiyomizudera.or.jp/ (Japanese)

Address: 1-294 Kiyomizu, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto (Google Map)

2. Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building  [Tokyo]

 

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Photo by tokyoyakei.jp

Inside the 48 floor, 243meter/800ft tall Tokyo Metropolitan Government Bldg., the two observatories, north and south, are located on the 45th floor (202m/663ft).  The visitors can take in the sweeping panorama of Tokyo for free.  On a clear day, many landmarks can be observed, such as Tokyo Tower, Tokyo Skytree, Rainbow Bridge, and even Mt. Fuji on the horizon.  Shops and restaurants are on-site, the north observatory stays open until 11pm so you can enjoy the brilliant night view as well.

Open: North Observatory  9:30-23:00  South Observatory 9:30 – 17:30

Free admission

HP: www.metro.tokyo.jp/ENGLISH/index.htm

HP: www.metro.tokyo.jp/index.htm (Japanese Only)

Address: 2-8-1 Nishi-Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo (Google Map)

3. Mt. Kiro Observatory Park [Ehime]

Mt. Kiro Observatory park is perched on top of a 307m/1000ft hill in the Setonaikai National Park.  It overlooks the inland sea, Kurushima Kaikyo Bridge (the world’s first triple suspension bridge) and Mt. Ishizuchi, the highest peak of the western Japan.  It is especially breathtaking during the night, when the big suspension bridge becomes illuminated, with the lights of Imabari city in the background.

Free Admission

Open 24 hours

HP: www.go-shimanami.jp/global/english/

HP: www.go-shimanami.jp/global/zh_tw/ (中文)

HP: www.go-shimanami.jp/spot/?a=182 (Japanese)

Address: 487-4 Minamiura, Yoshiumi-cho, Imabari-shi, Ehime (Google Map)

4. Tokyo City View: Roppongi Hills Observation Deck [Tokyo]

Tokyo City View Observatory is located on the 52th floor of the Roppongi Hills building. Tokyo Tower and Tokyo Skytree loom at the eye level, Rainbow bridge and Tokyo Gate Bridge are just two of the many landmarks which can be clearly seen nearby.  On a fine day even Mt. Fuji is visible on the horizon.

Open: 10:00-23:00、Fri. Sat. Eves of the national holiday: 10:00-25:00

Admission: Adult- ¥1800、Uni, high school students- ¥1200、Elementary, Jr. high students-  ¥600、senior- ¥1500

HP: www.roppongihills.com/tcv/jp/ (Japanese Only)

Address: 6-10-1 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo (Google Map)

5. Okurayama Ski Jump Stadium [Hokkaido]

 

The ski jumping schanze where the large hill event was held in 1972 Sapporo Winter Olympics, the visitors can get the perspective of the athletes by standing right at the top, which can be rather hair-raising – they must have felt like flying right into the Sapporo-city!  You will also be astonished by the angle of the hill, which is much steeper than it seems on the television screen.

HP: okura.sapporo-dc.co.jp/index.html

HP: okura.sapporo-dc.co.jp/index.html (中文)

HP: okura.sapporo-dc.co.jp/index.html (Japanese)

Address: 1274 Miyanomori Chuo-ku, Sapporo-shi, Hokkaido (Google Map)

6. Sky Garden, Yokohama Landmark Tower Observatory [Kanagawa]

The fastest elevator in Japan will take you to “Sky Garden”, the Observatory of the Landmark Tower, located at the 69th floor (273m/895ft), in just 40 seconds.  You will get the full view of not only Yokohama, but also Tokyo Tower, Tokyo Skytree, Boso peninsula, and Mt. Fuji, the 360° panorama of the entire Kanto plain.  You can also enjoy a drink at the Sky Café, looking over the stunning night view.

Open: 10:00-21:00, until 22:00 on Saturdays and during the summer

Admission:  Adult- ¥1000、High school student, Senior ¥800、Elementary, Jr. High student ¥500、child ¥200

HP: www.yokohama-landmark.jp/skygarden/web/english/

HP: www.yokohama-landmark.jp/skygarden/web/chinese_02/ (中文)

HP: www.yokohama-landmark.jp/skygarden/page/ (Japanese)

Address: 2-2-1 Minato-Mirai, Nishi-ku, Yokohama-shi, Kanagawa (Google Map)

7. Tamatorizaki Observatory Point [Okinawa]

 

Located in the north-western part of the Ishigaki Island, Tamatorizaki Observatory looks over the emerald ocean, both the Pacific side and the East China sea side. Majestic view of Hirakubo peninsula, Iharuma bay, and Coral reef will make you forget the passing of time.

HP: www.ishigaki-navi.net/si_tamatori.html (Japanese Only)

Address: Ibaruma, Ishigaki-shi, Okinawa (Google Map)

8. Seaside Top, World Trade Center Observatory [Tokyo]

The observatory is located on the 40th floor of the WTC, 150m/492ft from the ground.  It is known to be the best location to admire Tokyo Tower, which looms right in front of it.  It is especially impressive in the evening, when the Tower is lit up.  From the observatory many other famous landmarks can be spotted, such as Tokyo Skytree, Roppongi Hills, and Rainbow Bridge.

Open: 10:00-20:30 

Admission:  Adult- ¥620、Elementary, Jr. high students- ¥360、Child- ¥260

HP: www.wtcbldg.co.jp/wtcb/index.html (Japanese Only)

Address: 2-4-1 Hamamatsu-cho, Minato-ku, Tokyo (Google Map)

9. Haneda International Airport Observatory [Tokyo]

Great place to watch airplanes at the International terminal, and muse about the places you might fly to. You can also do so while taking a drink or snack at the observatory deck, there is a shop located at the entrance.  There is a large overhang, so you can stay comfortable also on a rainy day.  On a clear day Mt. Fuji and the peaks of Japan Alps appear on the horizon.  Above all, such a cool experience to see all the jet airplane up close!

Open: 6:30-22:00 

HP: www.tokyo-airport-bldg.co.jp/en/

HP: www.tokyo-airport-bldg.co.jp/tw/ (中文)

HP: www.tokyo-airport-bldg.co.jp/ (Japanese)

Address:  Haneda International Airport, Ota-ku, Tokyo (Google Map)

10. Tokyo Tower [Tokyo]

 

 

The main observatory is located at 150m/492ft from the ground, the Special Observatory* at 250m/820ft.  With a good weather Mt. Fuji, Boso peninsula and Miura peninsula can be seen afar.  From both observatories you can enjoy the 360°panorama, which is particularly beautiful in the evening.  The transparent glass flooring on the main observatory is not for the faint hearted! 
*Special Observatory is temporarily closed as of Oct. 2016 until summer 2017, due to renovation.

Open: Main Observatory- 9:00-23:00

Admission:  Main Observatory: Adult- ¥900、Elementary, Jr. high students- ¥500、Child- ¥400 

HP: www.tokyotower.co.jp/en.html

HP: www.tokyotower.co.jp/zh.html (中文)

HP: www.tokyotower.co.jp/ (Japanese)

Address: 4-2-8 Shiba-koen, Minato-ku, Tokyo (Google Map)

11. Tokyo Skytree [Tokyo]

 

 

Skytree’s Tembo deck is located at 350m/1148ft from the ground where you can have the full view of 360° panorama of the metropolis.  Those who dare can stand on the transparent glass flooring to have the hair raising experience!  You can take the scenic spiral slope wrapping around the tower to get to the top section, the highest spot to enjoy the vista of Tokyo.  The night view from Skytree is a special gem, and the tower itself, all illuminated in the evening is a sight to behold.

Open 8:00-22:00 

Admission: advanced ticket  ¥2570, tickets at the door  ¥2060

HP: www.tokyo-skytree.jp/en/

HP: www.tokyo-skytree.jp/cn_t/ (中文)

HP: www.tokyo-skytree.jp/ (Japanese)

Address: 1-1-2 Oshiage, Sumida-ku, Tokyo (Google Map)

12. Mt. Inasa Observatory [Nagasaki]

 

The sparkling night view of Nagasaki is famous around the world, it is said to match that of Hong Kong and Monaco.  And Mt. Inasa is an ideal place to take in the splendor.  The floor of the observatory has a LED illumination, making the atmosphere even more special.  Of course the view is no less memorable during the day, with sweeping vista of the entire city of Nagasaki, Mt. Unzen, and the Goto Islands. This observatory should belong to your bucket list!

Open Rooftop Observatory 24 hours、Indoor observatory 9:00 – 22:00

Free Admission

HP: inasayama.net/ (Japanese Only)

Address: Fuchi-machi, Nagasaki-shi, Nagasaki (Google Map)

13. Yama-dera (Risshaku-ji) [Yamagata]

 

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PIXTA

Yamadera, a.k.a. Risshakuji is famous for the poetry of the legendary Basho Matsuo.  Climbing up the 1000 steps, you reach the height of 417m/1370ft from the sea level.  Looking out from Godaido pavilion at the edge of the cliff towards the high mountain peaks, you get the feeling of floating in the sky.  Combination of a historic temple and the spectacular vista makes Yamadera one of the top attractions of the region.

Visiting hours 8:00-17:00

Admission: Adult- ¥300,  Child- ¥200

HP: www.rissyakuji.jp/ (Japanese)

Address: 4456-1 Yamadera, Yamagata-shi, Yamagata (Google Map)

14. Mojiko Retro Observatory [Fukuoka]

Located on the 31st floor of the high-rise condominium designed by the world famous architect Kisho Kurokawa, Moji Retro Observatory is 103m/338ft from the ground level.  You can look out to the Kanmon straits and the Moji Retro district down below, the view can be enjoyed also from the elevator which takes you up to the observatory.  In the evening the atmosphere is quite romantic, a popular spot for dating.

Open: 10:00-22:00 

Admission: Adult ¥300、Elementary, Jr. high students- ¥150

HP: www.en.mojiko.info/

HP: www.cn.mojiko.info/ (中文)

HP: www.mojiko.info/3kanko/spot_tenbow.html (Japanese)

Address: 1-32 Higashiminato-machi, Moji-ku, Kitakyushu-shi, Fukuoka (Google Map)

15. Mt. Kagamiyama Observatory [Saga]

 

Mt. Kagamiyama observatory is perched on a hilltop of 284m/932ft altitude.  The sweeping panorama of the Karatsu bay, the city of Karatsu and the “niji no matsubara” pine forest is a special treat to your eyes and soul.  The evening view is equally enchanting.  With Kagamiyama shrine and its big torii gate at the entrance of the observatory, this is perpetually a popular sightseeing spot. 

Open: 24 hours

Free Admission

HP: www.saga-tripgenius.com/

HP: www.asobo-saga.tw/ (中文)

HP: www.asobo-saga.jp/search/detail.html?id=88 (Japanese)

Address: Karatsu-shi, Saga (Google Map)

16. Hennasaki Lighthouse [Miyakojima, Okinawa]

 

Going up the 97 steps of the spiral staircase, the view from the top of Hennasaki Lighthouse is purely unforgettable.  You can look out on the 360° unobstructed view of the Pacific Ocean and the East China Sea, those lucky few may even catch a glimpse of a flock of dolphins frolicking in the ocean!  Immersed in the splendor of the nature, you can forget the hassle of the city life for a moment.

Open: 9:00-16:00 

Admission:  ¥200

HP: miyakonavi.sakura.ne.jp/mido/higasiheian.html (Japanese)

Address: 1221-14 Gusukubebora, Miyakojima-shi, Okinawa (Google Map)

17. Narita International Airport Observatory Deck [Chiba]

 

The observatory looks out to the 4000m/2,5mile long runway, it’s an awe inspiring experience to watch the airplanes taking off and landing from up close. Admission is free, there is a food court with plenty of spots to take a seat with your snack while you enjoy the spectacle.

Open:(Apr-Sept) 6:30-21:00  (Oct-Mar) 7:00-21:00

HP: www.narita-airport.jp/en/index.html

HP: www.narita-airport.jp/ch2/index.html (中文)

HP: www.narita-airport.jp/jp/ (Japanese)

Address: 1-1 Furugome, Narita-shi, Chiba (Google Map)

18. Kuchu Teien Observatory, Umeda Sky Bldg. [Osaka]

 

On the top floor of the 40 story ultra modern Umeda Sky Building, there is a state of art observatory called floating garden.  The unobstructed 360°vista features the city of Osaka, the river Yodo, and the Osaka bay way down below.  Looking out on the famous sunset and the evening view is an experience to be had when you are in Osaka.

Open: 10:00-22:30 

Admission:  ¥800

HP: www.kuchu-teien.com/observatory/

HP: www.kuchu-teien.com/observatory/ (中文)

HP: www.kuchu-teien.com/observatory/ (Japanese)

Address: 1-1-88 Umeda Sky Bldg. Oyodo-cho, Kita-ku, Osaka (Google Map)

19. Kobe City Hall [Kobe]

 

The 24 story Kobe City Hall opens its observatory to the public free of charge, where you can admire the beautiful city of Kobe, all the way to the Kii peninsula and the peaks of Hakko mountains afar on a clear day.  There is a restaurant at the observatory, it’s a popular place for everyone to hang out.

Open: 8:15-22:00 

Free Admission

HP: www.city.kobe.lg.jp/foreign/english/index.html

HP: www.city.kobe.lg.jp/foreign/chinese-trad/index.html (中文)

HP: www.city.kobe.lg.jp/ (Japanese)

Address: 6-5-1 Kano-Cho, Chuo-Ku, Kobe (Google Map)

20. Hakuba Ski Jumping Stadium [Nagano]

 

The visitors can go up to the top of ski jumping venue of the 1998 Winter Olympics using the chair lift.  From the top the picturesque vista of Hakuba will open up in all its glory.  When you cast your eyes downward to the dizzy steep slope, the reality of the ski jumpers strikes you at once, it’s a goose bump moment!  The view is stunningly beautiful when the surrounding is covered with snow during the winter.。

Open: 8:30-16:30 

 Chair Lift (round trip) Adult- ¥460、Elementary, Jr. high students- ¥280 

HP: www.hakuba-happo.or.jp/en/

HP: www.hakuba-happo.or.jp/jump/ (Japanese)

Address: 3476 Hokujo, Hakuba-mura, Kitaazumi-gun, Nagano (Google Map)

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