Plane spotting at Jonanjima Seaside Park! Woot, I was happy to do that. After all, I hadn’t done plane spotting for a few months, and I was itching to do it. This place would be something special.
Have you heard of Jonanjima Seaside Park? No? It might only be five kilometers from Odaiba, but it may be in another country as far as I’m concerned. There are no train stations nearby, and there aren’t many buses.
Having said that, Jonanjima Seaside Park is an incredible spot for aircraft spotting. You’ll be almost directly under planes using runway C at the park. It might be the best place for it in Tokyo. One day, I hope to give you a definitive answer.
When planes approach runway C, they come in very low over the park’s trees. I felt I only had to reach out to touch them. They seemed so close. It was a fantastic experience.
The only thing that could have been better was the weather. I had to deal with some heavy clouds. If the weather had been kinder, my photos might have looked better. Still, it was an excellent first time.
Recommended lenses for aircraft spotting there?
I took 95% of my photos with my 100-400 mm Fujifilm. Haneda is about 1.5 kilometers away, so you’ll need something long. A short lens isn’t needed. I did take a few with the 16-55 but gave that up very quickly.
The shortest focal length I used was about 150 mm. That was when aircraft were over the park. When they were further away, I used anything up to 400 mm. Next time I go, I won’t take any other lenses.
What is at Jonanjima Seaside Park?
It’s a good place, with an artificial beach. There is also a dog run, camping area, and a skateboard park. The park even has a car park. On weekends, many families use it. Sometimes, couples even do wedding photos there too!
Aircraft photography spots at the park
- Seawall: I like this, as it has completely unobscured views of the airport. You only need to climb up some boulders to get to it. Its only downside is that it isn’t the best place for a tripod if you want to use one of those.
- Beach: I looked at this and didn’t shoot from it. The seawall in front of it blocks some views.
- Grass area: This is behind the beach and elevated above it. If you are shooting the airport, some parts of the fences along the seawall might block your view. It is a firm place to use a tripod.
Where is Jonanjima Seaside Park?
Jonanjima Seaside Park is located in the middle of nowhere, as far as I’m concerned. It’s in an industrial area, not far from Tokyo Port Wild Bird Park. I would recommend going by car, but if you don’t have one of those, take this bus:
Bus Company: Keikyu
Where to catch the bus to Jonanjima? Ryutsu Center-Mae. The stop is on the map. Bus Number: Mori 32 (森32), on the Jonanjima Circulation line. Make sure you have the correct number before you get on. Be careful as not all buses go to Jonanjima.
Where to get off? Jonanjima 4-chome (marked on the map). Remember the spot as you get the bus there again to take you to Osaki Station.
Here is a map:
My experience with public transport to the park
Public transport is something that needs discussion. To be blunt, Jonanjima Seaside Park is very far. It may be on another planet if you don’t have a car. And I don’t have one of those. So I went to Ryutsu Center, which was the closest station. It is on the Tokyo monorail. From there, I took the bus. Walking wasn’t an option. That would have taken at least an hour. Here is what I found:
Buses to Jonanjima Seaside Park run about twice an hour. The ride should have taken twenty minutes, but it took about forty. Traffic can be heavy. You need to plan for this if you go in winter when the days are short.
The route is very circuitous, passing through primarily industrial areas. It will also stop at Tokyo Port Wild Bird Park. The bus also enters and goes around Ota Fruit and Vegetable Markets.
When you return to Tokyo from Jonanjima Seaside Park, walk back to the same bus stop. The bus you came on will go to Osaki Station. Osaki is on the JR Yamanote, Saikyo, and Shonan-Shinjuku lines. This trip will be about thirty minutes if the traffic is kind.
If you get the return bus around 5 or 6 pm, you’ll be getting it with all the area’s workers. Be careful with your gear as there might be many passengers.
The last bus from Jonanjima 4-chome is at 8:57 pm. On public holidays, the service operates on a reduced schedule.
I haven’t been everywhere for plane spotting Haneda Airport yet, but this place is excellent. Yes, it is a pain to get to if you don’t have a car. But don’t let that put you off. Jonanjima Seaside Park is a fantastic place.
One day, I’d love to try some long-exposure photography there. With perfect views of the approaches and runways, that type of photo might be interesting. I’m looking forward to doing that.
For more plane spotting articles, look at:
Anyway, if you have any questions or comments, please leave them below. By the way, have you been to Jonanjima? If you have, let us know your thoughts about it.