Shinjuku, the heart of Tokyo. There is a large terminal station, and it is a city where many people come and go daily. Even if you ask about sightseeing spots in Shinjuku, there may be many who do not think much about it. However, just changing trains and passing by is wasteful. Shinjuku has a variety of tourist attractions and is popular from outside the country. There is a bustling downtown area, and there is also a park full of nature, and it is the hidden attraction of Shinjuku that changes its expression as if it is the same city.
There is a nostalgic atmosphere at Shinjuku Station West Exit, here “Omoide yokocho” (Memories Alley). Because there are many yakitori shops, it is also known as “Yakitori Yokocho”, and also by the name of “Shonben Yokocho”. Its roots are in the post-war black market, and there are a number of cheap-drinking shops. A convenient place to drink lightly while holding a yakitori. People on the way home from the company, as well as tourists who have sought for nostalgia, gather at this Yokocho full of sense of Showa era.
A small shop like a time warped to the nostalgic era of Showa is crowded in the corner to the east exit of Shinjuku Station West Exit. There are approximately 81 stores, including restaurants and bars, such as taverns and barbeque shops, as well as 20 grilled chicken and skewer restaurants. If you just walk around “Omoide Yokocho”, you will feel like you have entered the Showa area. There is also a Yakitori store open from early hours, so when visiting Shinjuku, why not eat a cup of alcohol while eating Yakitori?
Speaking of the entertainment district of Shinjuku is the Kabukicho area, but there is a tavern which is called “Omoide yokocho” (Memories Alley), leaving the atmosphere of the Showa era as it is. In the corner of the city of Shinjuku where the neon flashes, there is a place where nostalgia is wrapped as if time is stopping, there is “Omoide yokocho”.
The Omoide Yokocho street is very outstanding under those circumstances. The woman customers increase recently, too, and it is a bar on a narrow side street becoming more and more lively.
Omoide yokocho is a shopping street originating from the black market born in the vicinity of the west entrance of Shinjuku station which was still a burned land in 1946, shortly after the end of the World War II. At that time crackdown on controlled goods was severe, many stores handle cow and pig’s offal which is not controlled goods, and from that circumstance many shops that are currently providing offal and yakitori are characterized.
Initially, it was a black market that was a gathering of stall vendors that were separated by a single door plate. Even now, its holdover is still strong, and the shops separated by a single wall have become a jam‐packed lively space. Most of the shops are very narrow, and seats are close enough for customers to come together. That is why it is a tasty bar with a new encounter. In the past, there were about 300 stalls in the vicinity, but many shops were forced to evict on occasion of illegal occupation etc. at the time of redevelopment. Currently it is only about 70 stores left in place with a width of about 30 meters and a length of 80 meters.
The street has characteristically many shops providing yakitori (grilled chicken) and grilled entrails.
Some restaurants and ticket sales shops stand any place apart from bars. Since access from a station is also good, you can freely drop in.
It seems to gradually become the topic among the foreign tourists recently. It is the neighborhood with the atmosphere that even a Japanese is hard to enter, but it overflows with a foreign tourist everywhere recently. It appears in a tourist guide book, and seems to be said “The place that you must certainly go if you go to Tokyo”.
|Name:||Omoide yokocho (Memories Alley)|
|Adresse:||Nishishinjuku 1-2-2 Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 160-0023 Japan|
|Access:||JR Yamanote-sen Line “Shinjuku-eki Station” (3 minutes walk)|
|Tel:||(+81) 3-3364-3235 (Shinjuku West exit Shopping District Promotion Association)|
|Price/Charge:||There are more than 60 different eateries. (Grilled chicken, skewers, Tavern, Grilled meat, Soba, Sushi, Dining processing, cafe, ramen, BAR, fast food etc.)
You can check the menu on the official web page.