Thursday, 25 June 2015

Nippori: Deep Core in Downtown Tokyo

"Shimogoindenbashi Train Museum" in front of Nippori Station on the JR East and Keisei lines

Tokyo, its former name was Edo, has been developed as a castle city since 16th century. The city of Edo was roughly categorized into an uptown area west of Edo Castle where samurai lived, and a downtown area facing several rivers and moats where commoners lived. Nippori is located north of Edo Castle and known as one of the typical downtown areas.

Once you get off at Nippori Station on the JR East or Keisei line, you will find an old fashioned shopping district there. Festivals and customs from the Edo Period (1603-1868) still exist. Generally speaking, local people are friendly and kind, probably because it's a close-knit community.

Along with traditional shopping streets, you, rail fans can also enjoy your own way in Nippori. There is a reputable spot, "Shimogoindenbashi Train Museum", in front of the station. Shimogoindenbashi is not a real train museum, but a bridge spanning railway tracks. A total of 12 tracks are seen from the bridge. In addition, you can see the elevated double track of the Keisei Main Line on the right-hand side.

Surprisingly, a total of 2,500 trains run under the bridge per day! So, you can enjoy trains continuously there. In fact, the bridge is always crowded with people. They are rail fans, children with their parents and tourists including foreigners. You can see a descriptive plate about the trains running under the bridge to identify them.

Nippori... it is a deep core in downtown Tokyo for both tourists and rail fans.

"Yuyake-dandan (sunset steps)" is the entrance of Yanaka Shopping Street near Nippori Station