Spend A Day in Ikebukuro’s Attraction Mecca: Sunshine City

  • With a name like Sunshine City, you might expect a beach resort or tanning salon. The name is misleading, because what it actually is is a shopping and attraction center in Ikebukuro, Tokyo. One of the tallest buildings in Tokyo, not only the building itself but the surrounding area is full of things to do, and should definitely be a stop if you are in Ikebukuro.


    What is there to do in Sunshine City? A lot actually. The first couple floors are a shopping center with everything from Daiso (a 100 yen store) to a Pokemon Store. The Pokemon Mega Tokyo is actually the largest Pokemon store in Tokyo! There are stores for men, women, children, gifts, home, shoes, and almost everything in between. If you are looking for a one-stop shopping experience, the shopping at Sunshine City is worth checking out.


    If you want to take a break from shopping, there are also a variety of restaurants and cafes. Many of these are located near the shopping center, but several are much higher up on some of the top floors. You can find every kind of food from quick sushi or subway sandwiches to more elegant French cuisine. The restaurants up on the 59th floor can be a bit on the pricier side, but the stunning view of Tokyo is well worth the extra few yen.


    The observatory at the top is one of the attractions Sunshine City is known for. Called Sunshine City 60, it is on the 60th floor and offers a 360-degree panorama of the city. At only 620 yen per person, it is one of the cheapest observatories in Tokyo. However, as it is under renovation until 2016, the entrance fee may be subject to change. It also offers a truly amazing view of Tokyo from the north with all of the city laid out in front of you. Day and night are both great times to go, as each time of the day provides a different experience.


    Sunshine City also houses a planetarium by the name of Konica Minolta Planetarium Manten. The planetarium has been under renovation but will reopen to the public on November 30th, 2015. This planetarium is run by the same company that runs the planetarium in Tokyo Skytree, but offers different shows and events.
    Price: 1,200 to 1,500 yen for adults.
    500 to 600 yen for children
    Hours: 11am to 8pm


    Besides the observatory, Sunshine City is best known for their aquarium. Sunshine City Aquarium is one of the largest in Tokyo and has multiple events happening daily. Designed as a so-called “Oasis in the Sky” there is a focus on large and overhead tanks such as the Jellyfish Tunnel or Sunshine Aqua Ring where you can watch the sea life swim around you.

    Price: 2,000 yen for adults
    1,000 yen for children
    Hours: 10am to 8pm (April to October)
    10am to 6pm (November to March)


    As if this wasn’t enough to fill your day, there is also a museum! The Ancient Orient Museum has artifacts from previous dynasties and eras of Asia. A lot of it is from BC eras and it’s truly amazing to see things that ancient in the midst of a futuristic city.

    Prices: 200 to 600 yen
    Hours: 10am to 5pm

    Sunshine City has such a wide arrangement of attractions, you could spend a whole day there! Only a few minutes away from the bustling Ikebukuro Station, it is definitely a go to when exploring the area. If you want the convenience of multiple events and attractions in one building complex, Sunshine City is the place.


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