Takadanobaba station 高田馬場駅
The student district with 100 ramen restaurants
Located between Shin-Okubo and Mejiro stations, Takadanobaba station serves an area little known to foreigners. It hosts the JR Yamanote, Seibu Shinjuku and Tozai lines and thus constitutes an important crossing of western Tokyo.
Less known than some of its counterparts on the Yamanote circular line, Takadanobaba station is located two stations after Shinjuku station, to the west of the capital. In addition to the Yamanote operated by JR East, this station hosts two other lines: the Seibu Shinjuku Line and the Tozai Line, operated by Tokyo Metro. The latter makes it possible to reach Nakano and Nihonbashi in particular, from west to east through the city.
JR Station was put into operation on September 15, 1910, while Seibu Station opened on April 16, 1927, and the Tōzai Line station on December 23, 1964. It sees an average of 680,000 passengers per day and is the 11th busiest station on the JR network in the capital. Its proximity to the great Waseda University is one reason.
The station has many exits, the most popular being the Waseda exit, which leads onto the avenue of the same name, located at the northeast end of the station.
By taking this exit, you will find yourself in the central square serving the points of interest of the district, as well as the Big Box shopping center, which however has a dedicated exit. This is also the exit you will take if you wish to walk toward Waseda University.
The small Toyama exit, south of the station, will allow you to get to Toyama Park more quickly, located halfway between the Takadanobaba and Shin-Okubo districts. You will also find three exits on the north side of the station, on Waseda Dori.
Finally, a little curiosity, if you are on the platforms of the Yamanote in Takadanobaba, you will be able to hear the musical theme of the animated series Astro Boy, played each time the train leaves. This is a nod to this manga character created in Takadanobaba by Osamu Tezuka in 1952. For fans, you can also admire a fresco showing all the characters from the series, just under the rails of the Yamanote, on Waseda dori.
- Discover: Osamu Tezuka manga museum
A student neighborhood
The neighborhood's original name was Takatanobaba, sometimes still used by the neighborhood's older residents. Today, the district is often nicknamed "Baba" by Tokyoites.
Due to its proximity to several universities such as Waseda and Gakushuin, Takadanobaba is generally considered the city's student district. The ESP music academy, as well as many language schools, such as Fuji University, have set up their campuses there.
The surroundings have therefore gradually become a happy "melting pot" of students, Japanese and foreign. It is thus a reputedly inexpensive district, home to many addresses of affordable restaurants, izakaya, bars, and cafes.
The neighborhood is also known for its monolithic mall, the aptly named "Big Box". You will find a gym, many ready-to-wear stores, a game center, a 100 yen shop, cafes, and restaurants of all kinds.
Takadanobaba, the "ramen town"
Finally, Baba has another more confidential nickname, that of "Ramen Town". Indeed, more than a hundred establishments are serving this emblematic specialty of Japan in the district.
Fans and gourmets will therefore be well inspired to visit its streets and avenues to find the perfect ramen.
We recommend the restaurant " Watanabe Ramen " to taste the famous Japanese noodles in the broth. For those wanting something different, " Yakimen Tsurugi " serves up a delicious twist on ramen, where the noodles are grilled like yakisoba. Last address: " Ore no Sora ", located just opposite the Toyama exit of the station, and a real neighborhood institution. Itadakimasu!
Discover the Yamanote, Tokyo's iconic subway line:
- Tokyo station
- Nippori Station
- Uguisudani station
- Ueno Station
- Okachimachi Station
- Akihabara Station
- Kanda Station
- Yurakuchō Station
- Shimbashi Station
- Hamamatsucho Station
- Tamachi Station
- Ebisu Station
- Shibuya Station
- Harajuku Station
- Yoyogi Station
- Shinjuku Station
- Shin-Okubo Station
- Takadanobaba station
- Ikebukuro Station
- Otsuka Station
- Komagome Station
- Tabata station