Shinjuku vs Shibuya
April 28, 2011 9:44 AM   Subscribe

I will be in Tokyo for a few days next month and need to decide where I am staying - Shibuya or Shinjuku?

I am taking a brief (3-4 days) trip to Tokyo and I'm going to stay in either Shinjuku or Shibuya (for their proximity to Chofu). I was initially leaning towards Shinjuku because it appeared convenient and inexpensive, but I have been warned that it is a pretty horrid place to stay and that Shibuya would be far superior.

Is Shinjuku really a "hellhole" to be avoided or is it fine for a brief stay? Is Shibuya the clearly superior choice? Am I missing a better option that is also close to Chofu?
posted by Julnyes to Travel & Transportation (10 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
No, Shinjuku isn't a hell-hole, unless you dislike neon. However, in my experience, hotels in both places tend to be more expensive, and fewer inexpensive hotels to choose from. Are you a budget traveler?
posted by Rash at 9:54 AM on April 28, 2011

BTW this is my favorite Shibuya hotel, I've stayed there many times; but be advised it's a long walk from the main station.
posted by Rash at 9:57 AM on April 28, 2011 [2 favorites]

Budget isn't my main concern, heck if it was I wouldn't be flying all the way to Japan for a weekend!

I really just need an easy trip to Chofu and the hotels there are booked up the weekend I'm going.

Thank you for the link!
posted by Julnyes at 10:03 AM on April 28, 2011

From the perspective of a visitor with little or no Tokyo experience, Shinjuku may be a better choice because it's more of a transportation hub than Shibuya - it may be a little easier to get to Chofu from there.

Shinjuku is pretty cool. Takashima Times Square is built around the station, and features a wooden "boardwalk" high above the train lines, and some interesting shopping experiences, such as Kinokunia Bookstore, Tokyu Hands, and Takashimaya.

Shibuya is interesting (obviously) but I've found it can be hard to get one's bearings there.
posted by KokuRyu at 10:04 AM on April 28, 2011

Do you mean Chofu station? It's slightly easier to get there from Shinjuku (direct on the Keio line), whereas I think Shibuya requires at least one change (Keio Inokashira line to Meidaimae, switch to Keio line).

I think it's hard to characterize Shinjuku as one type of place, because it seems that depending on which exit you choose to leave the station from, you get a very different set of people and shops around you. As long as you look carefully, I'm sure you'll be able to find accommodations that suit you.
posted by mariokrat at 10:27 AM on April 28, 2011

I stayed at Shibuya and liked it overall but found it geared more to teens than adult travelers.
My hotel was very close to the train station which is something that was important to me since it was my first time in Tokyo.
Shibuya Tokyu Inn Shibuya also has cool bars in the famous Piss Alley.

I only passed through Shinjuku and based on my experience, I'd choose Shibuya over Shinjuku, but honestly, I'd prefer to stay somewhere else altogether, for example in Yebisu.
posted by marais at 10:54 AM on April 28, 2011

So the impression I am getting is that I would probably enjoy Shibuya a bit more, but Shinjuku is more in line with what I need this trip.

marais - Would Yebisu be an easy trip to/from Chofu like Shinjuku is?
posted by Julnyes at 11:48 AM on April 28, 2011

We stayed in Shinjuku at the Hyatt Regency and it was great. Very central and easy to get around. And how can you not love kabuki-cho?
posted by Kafkaesque at 1:35 PM on April 28, 2011

If you need more specific help, send me a message. I'm from Tokyo.
posted by xmts at 10:09 PM on April 28, 2011

Would Yebisu be an easy trip to/from Chofu like Shinjuku is?

Just so you don't get confused since you don't seem too familiar with Tokyo, Yebisu with the "Y" is the name of the brand of beer, and the station is really called Ebisu, though they're pronounced the same. And no, you'd need to transfer at least once somewhere to get to Chofu from Ebisu, so if you want convenience, Shinjuku is really your best bet. It's not a hellhole, you'll be fine.
posted by misozaki at 1:32 AM on April 29, 2011

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