Epic Crossings in Tokyo and Where to Photograph Them
One of the most popular landmarks in Tokyo is the congested pedestrian crossing found in Shibuya. Known as the Shibuya Scramble Crossing, it is probably the most busiest crossing in the world and definitely the busiest in Japan. The mass movement of people from all sides and directions make this a sight a lot of tourists like to see and document. Crossing this road you will be amazed at how the pedestrians skillfully avoid collision with each other despite converging from all directions.
Although this crossing is the most recognized crossing in Tokyo, you can also find many other crossings similar to the one in Shibuya all across Tokyo. And what better way to photograph them than from above with a birds eye view. Here are some crossings and the best vantage points to photograph them.
The upmarket crossing
This is one of the most well-known junctions in Ginza area. On this junction you can see several roads, railways and highways intertwining with each other. The vantage you get from this location is breathtaking. You can take a long exposure with the light trails by cars making the picture look dynamic and adding some movement in the picture. The location is located on a rooftop garden of a shopping mall. Tripods are allowed and usually the rooftop is deserted making taking pictures very easy.
It is also possible to photography this place during the day time. We recommend going there just before sunset when the sun is at a lower angle creating this strip of sunlight, as see in below picture, that runs across the crossing.
the shibuya magnet
This is the best spot to photograph the famous Shibuya crossing. The spot is a rooftop on a building located right at the center of the junction. The spot is well-known to many local photographers. Because the building is located right on the crossing, it gives a vantage advantage compared to other spots where you can photograph this crossing. Remember to take a telephoto and a wide angle lens both. You can spend hours here taking pictures and it still wont be enough. Tripods are not allowed so you will have to use your hands. Please also note that to access this rooftop you will have to pay a few hundred yen for the ticket.
The backside of Tokyo
Here you can not only capture one of the crossings but also the Tokyo Tower. The long straight road gives you a long narrow perspective creating an interesting picture like above. Although it is nice during the daytime (see picture below), it is especially recommended to come here during the night as the streets lit up with multiple colors of light.
The entrance to the location is hard to find because the stairs are positioned in a small alleyway. Use the exterior stairs on the building to reach the rooftop. The entrance to the exterior stairs is located in the adjacent small alleyway. Take both a wide angle and a telephoto zoom lens to make the most out of this location.