Astro Boy used to be one of my favorite cartoons when I was a youngster in the 1970s. I watched him religiously on Saturday afternoons. But as I got older, I lost track of him for many years. But a few years ago, I found out he is in Takadanobaba these days. Yep, he has his own piece of real estate near the station. I visited him with my camera.
Takadonobaba isn’t the biggest station in the world, so you should find Astro easily. Just look out from the Waseda Exit, and he’ll be over the road. And it won’t only be him. Many of Osamu Tezuka’s creations are with him. Some on the wall include:
- Big X
- Kimba the White Lion
- Princess Knight
The pictures are all in good condition. But, they can be challenging to photograph because of their size. They are massive, so if you want to shoot their entire length, you’ll need to do that from the station side of the road. And, because you’ll be shooting from over the road, you’ll need to deal with the traffic. It will be a patience game. You are warned.
If you move close, it can be difficult as many people will be walking right past you. A few homeless sleep on the footpath in front of the murals, but they seem pretty friendly. The ones I’ve talked to were Astro Boy fans too!
The other problem photographing the murals can be the light. As they are under the tracks, there will be many shadows. You might find other obstacles too. The time of day can influence the amount of available light. I’d never shoot there late in the day because the buildings will block the sunlight.
So if you are a fan of Tezuka’s works, I recommend you head there to get reacquainted with these blasts from the past. You can see his official website here.
Where are the Astro Boy murals in Tokyo?
They are in Takadobaba, only a couple of stops from Shinjuku on the Yamanote Line. Leave via the Waseda Exit, and Astro will be over the road. Here is a map:
If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below.