Nishi-Shinjuku Junction and beautiful light trails

Nishi-Shinjuku Junction light trails
The Nishi-Shinjuku Junction and its light trails.

Nishi-Shinjuku Junction is a giant octopus. With so many ramps and columns to make up its legs and body, that is what it looks like.  It’s an incredible piece of engineering. With so much traffic using it, it is perfect for long-exposure photographs. The Tokyo Opera City skyscraper is also in the background!

Under the concrete, so many cars, buses, and motorbikes make their way. Their lights are like laser beams at night. It is very futuristic. It is reminiscent of a scene from Blade Runner or Ghost in the Shell.

How to photograph Nishi-Shinjuku Junction?

  • The position for this shot is in front of Yoshinoya. From there, you’ll be able to photograph all the traffic coming towards you as it turns left.
  • A low tripod is the best for this photo. That changes the angle of the light trails, making them look very high. You can also get a good view of Tokyo Opera City.
  • I also use a small aperture (f/14) to create starbursts.
  • For the best light trails, wait for the trucks and buses as they have cab roof lights.
  • The area is so large you need a wide-angle lens.  I used the Fujinon XF 10-24 mm F4 R OIS.

Are there any problems photographing there?

  • There is a railing on the corner. You’ll probably need to move your tripod around to get the best position.
  • The area has a lot of foot and bicycle traffic.

Where is Nishi-Shinjuku Junction?

It is near Hatsudai Station. Leave via the North Exit or Number 2. Yoshinoya is only a short walk away, over the road. Click here to see it on Google Maps.

These photos will give you an idea of the area:

Nishi-Shinjuku Yoshinoya
Put your camera on that corner in front of the Yoshinoya shop.
Nishi-Shinjuku Junction
The Nishi-Shinjuku Junction daylight view.

Wrapping up

Nishi-Shinjuku Junction is great if you like light trails, engineering, and concrete. Best of all, it is in Shinjuku. That means there is much to photograph, only a short walk away.

For more Shinjuku articles, look at:

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