Tokyo Skytree has Tokyo’s tallest observation deck, Tembo Galleria, at 450 meters (1476 ft). The second tallest, Tembo Deck, sits 100 meters below Tembo Galleria. The tower — technically the world’s tallest — opened in 2012. It got a lot of buzz at the time, but now has to compete with Shibuya Sky for your yen. Is Skytree worth it? Find out more about what you can do there, and how you can save money.

tl;dr: If it’s sky-high views you’re after, visit on a weekday and buy an advance ticket. Tickets for just the Tembo Deck start at ¥1,800. You can also see Skytree from a go-kart tour of the area.

Skytree may have the tallest view point, but it also has to compete with the other popular observation decks in Tokyo.

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What is Tokyo Skytree?

Tokyo Skytree is the tallest building in Japan at 634 meters (2080 ft.), and the second tallest building in the world — after the 829.8 meter-tall Burj Khalifa in Dubai. It also gets to call itself the world’s tallest free-standing tower, for technical reasons.

Interestingly, it was built using the same principle as pagodas; relying on a central pole to keep everything nice and stable.

While we know it as a tourist attraction, Skytree’s primary use is that of a broadcasting tower. It beams out both TV signal and radio waves for national broadcaster NHK, as well as TV Asahi, TV Tokyo, and a number of other channels. 

Until Skytree officially opened in 2012, the city’s principle broadcast tower — and tallest structure — was Tokyo Tower, which stands 333 meters-tall.

tokyo skytree at night
Photo by iStock.com/Joel Papalini

Things to do at Tokyo Skytree

The main attraction at Tokyo Skytree is the staggering view from the observation decks. There’s two: the lower deck (Tembo Deck) at 350 meters (1148 ft) and the upper deck (Tembo Galleria) at 450 meters. You can buy tickets just for Tembo Deck or for both decks, depending on your budget.

At the base there’s a mall called Solamachi with a good selection of shops, cafes, and restaurants at a variety of price points. That’s free to visit, and you can also scout the surrounding area for photo-ops of the tower itself.

skytree tembo observation deck
Photo by iStock.com/verbaska_studio

Visiting Tembo Deck

At 350 meters, Tembo Deck is already taller than any other observation deck in the city. This gives you an awesome view over the city — and all the way to Mount Fuji on clear days. There’s a section here with a glass floor as well as a cafe, restaurant, and souvenir store.

Tembo Deck tickets start at ¥1,800; visiting Tembo Galleria costs an additional ¥900¥1,100.

Is Tembo Galleria worth it?

Is it worth ascending another 100 meters to the Tembo Galleria? Honestly, at these heights the view isn’t that different. The Tembo Deck feels plenty high, and you have to consider ticket price.

That said, if you’re here for the supreme heights, you might just want to go all the way? For what it’s worth, Tembo Galleria is currently the world’s 10th tallest public observation deck. At least, if you go for the Galleria, make sure to visit on a weekday and buy an advance ticket to save money.

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Tokyo Skytree tickets

There are two kinds of tickets to Skytree: same-day and advance. Tickets purchased online in advance are cheaper, but you must choose the day and hour you plan to visit. This means you’ll have to plan ahead, but you’ll also get to skip the ticket line. Plus, third-party vendors often have ticket packages that offer even bigger discounts.

How much do Skytree tickets cost?

Tickets for Tembo Deck cost ¥1,800¥2,300, while combo tickets (for both Tembo Deck and Tembo Galleria) cost ¥2,700¥3,400.

The cheapest prices are for advance tickets for weekday visits. There are also concessions for kids aged 6–11 and 12–17, while kids under 6 can enter for free. National holidays, unfortunately, get weekend pricing.

Tembo Deck ticket prices

Ticket typeWeekday ticket costWeekend ticket costBooking link
Advance ticket¥1,800¥2,000Booking link
Same-day ticket¥2,100¥2,300

Combo ticket prices

Combo tickets are for entry to both Tembo Deck and Tembo Galleria.

Ticket typeWeekday ticket costWeekend ticket costBooking link
Advance ticket¥2,700¥3,000Booking link
Same-day ticket¥3,100¥3,400

Tokyo Skytree opening hours

Tokyo Skytree is open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Last admission to Tembo Deck is 8 p.m. Some Solamachi restaurants are open 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. — convenient for late-night meals.

tokyo skytree
Photo by Adriana Paradiso

Solamachi: Skytree’s mall

Tokyo Solamachi — literally “Tokyo Skytown” — is a big mall with hundreds of shops. It has a good variety of local essentials, like Uniqlo, shoe store ABC-Mart, and drugstore Matsumoto Kiyoshi; branches of fashionable boutiques, like Beams and United Arrows; shops selling character goods (like Ghibli’s Donguri Kyowakoku); and souvenir stores.

Looking for budget souvenirs? Take a look at these 25 Cheapo souvenir ideas.

Skytree cafes and restaurants

There is a cafe and restaurant on Tembo Deck, but you are definitely paying a premium here to dine and drink at high altitude. Food and beverages are much more economical on the restaurant floors of Solamachi.

Most cafes and restaurants at Solamachi are chains, or branches of more famous restaurants located elsewhere in the city. That’s not necessarily a bad thing: you can get ramen from Ippudo, tonkatsu from Maisen, and dumplings from Din Tai Fung — among many other options.

There are also convenience stores if you’re going ultra budget.

Where to see Tokyo Skytree

Want good views of the tower itself? We recommend Asakusa, the neighborhood on the other side of the Sumida River. Asakusa is already a super popular tourist destination, thanks to its famous temple, Sensōji.

Pro tip: Head to the Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center for free views of the Tokyo city skyline, including Tokyo Skytree.

tokyo-skytree
Photo by Gregory Lane

While we do our best to ensure it’s correct, information is subject to change. Post first published in July, 2017. Last updated September, 2022 by Maria Danuco.

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