8 of the Best Things to Do in Nishi Ogikubo

Conveniently located along the Chuo Line, nestled in between Shinjuku and Kichijoji, Nishi Ogikubo is the oft overlooked suburb brimming with local surprises around every corner. Best known for its independent enterprises and eccentric antique shops, Nishi Ogikubo is ideal for escaping the big city crowds and getting a fresh breath of local fare.

  • 01

    Trawl the many antique shops

    Trawl the many antique shops

    Trawl the many antique shops

    Nishi Ogikubo is filled with small shops selling odd trinkets and locally made art. The city has made a reputation of itself for holding a large amount of antique shops that sell archaic goods dating back to the beginning of the Showa era, or possibly even earlier. Antiques Watanabe is a popular stop not far from the station. They specialize in Japanese history and ukiyo-e, or traditional woodblock art. Reproductions are quite affordable, around 3,500 yen while the more serious art purveyor can purchase an original, which can go up to 35,000 yen. Most of the antique stores are situated around the main roads near the Zenpukuji river. Antique trawling is a popular activity and visitors can pick up a map of the shops at the train station or police box.

  • 02

    Visit Igusa Hachimangu Shrine

    Visit Igusa Hachimangu Shrine

    Visit Igusa Hachimangu Shrine

    Igusa Hachimangu is a large Shinto shrine about a twenty minute walk from Nishi Ogikubo station. The shrine grounds are spacious and are especially picturesque among the spring cherry blossoms or autumn leaves. If visiting in April, September or October, don’t miss the yabusame festival, or the traditional practice of horseback archery. This thousand year old practice is only performed once every five years so double check the dates and don’t miss out! Their annual festival is also held on October 1st and a great way to experience the lively festival atmosphere within the normally tranquil grounds.

    IgusaHachimangu Shrine
    rating

    4.0

    73 Reviews
    place
    Tokyo Suginami-ku Zenpukuji 1-chome 33-1
    phone
    0333998133
  • 03

    Stroll or take out a boat at Zenpukuji Park

    Stroll or take out a boat at Zenpukuji Park

    Stroll or take out a boat at Zenpukuji Park

    After strolling through Igusa Hachimangu, take a break in some nature at Zenpukuji Park. The park is well known for its two ponds, the Kaminoike and Shimonoike, that the Zenpukuji river flows into. The larger pond, Kaminoike, is a popular place to paddle boat when the weather is nice. Zenpukuji Park is also a prime spot for hanami, or cherry blossom viewing. It’s residential location steers away crowds and it’s easy to find a spot within the large fields or along the river.
    The park is located about a twenty minute walk from the station. Buses are also available.

    Stroll or take out a boat at Zenpukuji Park

    Stroll or take out a boat at Zenpukuji Park

    Prefectural Zenpukuji Park
    place
    Tokyo Suginami-ku Zenpukuji 3-chome
  • 04

    Check out the vibrant Gallery scene

    Check out the vibrant Gallery scene

    Check out the vibrant Gallery scene

    With plenty of small cafes and antique shops, there is never a shortage of fun activities in Nishi Ogikubo. Small galleries showcasing local art and selling handmade goods are found everywhere within the city. Generally these exhibitions change quite frequently with every week or month showcasing a new artist. Fall Shop and Gallery is one of the most popular galleries, showcasing and selling unique stationery. Gallery Cadocco is a twee little space showcasing local artists and holding the occasional event. Mizunosora is a large gallery inside a remodeled home with a monthly schedule of rotating artists. There are plenty of galleries to be found in the area. It’s easy to spend a whole day popping in and out of galleries and antique shops.

    Bar crawl on the south side of the station

    The north side has all the daytime activities, such as the curio shops, Igusa Hachimangu and cafes. When night falls and the galleries close, jaunter over to the otherside of the station for a whole new Nishi Ogikubo experience. The south side holds all the izakayas, bars and nighttime restaurants. The restaurants are small with diners spilling out onto the streets and enjoying their beer with the fresh air. Yanagi koji is a yokocho, or small alley filled with tiny bars and izakayas. Here, diners can find cheap drinks and the usual izakaya fare.

    Read more
    Galleries in Nishi Ogikubo
    A lesser known neighbourhood with a character all its own, Nishi Ogikubo–or Nishiogi as its affectionately known–…

    Check out the vibrant Gallery scene

    Check out the vibrant Gallery scene

    FALL
    place
    Tokyo Suginami-ku Nishiogikita 3-13-15-1F
    phone
    0358560522
  • 05

    Have lunch at a traditional Japanese house café

    Re:gendo

    Re:gendo

    Nishiogikubo has many restaurants with a retro ambience, some of which have vegetarian / vegan friendly menus too. From a simple bakery to a fancy shaved ice café, you can find your favorite place in Nishiogikubo. The café we recommend is Re:gendo where you can enjoy a traditional Japanese lunch in renovated old house. They also have a skincare cosmetics shop upstairs, so check it out after making your body satisfied with good food.

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    What to Eat and Drink in Nishi Ogikubo
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    Re:gendo

    Re:gendo

    Re:gendo
    rating

    4.0

    12 Reviews
    place
    Tokyo Suginami-ku Shouan 3-38-20
    phone
    0359418664
    opening-hour
    11:00-18:00
  • 06

    Cafe and sweets

    Cafe and sweets

    Cafe and sweets

    Nishiogikubo also has a lot of cafes that local people have loved for ages. They have trendy cafés, as well as retro-styled old cafes. Among them, Amaikko is a traditionally-styled Japanese café and is a pretty famous place for shaved ice maniacs. Many people seek their shaved ice, forming a long line outside. The ice they use is crystal clear and has a nice, refreshing texture.

    Amaikko

    Amaikko

    甘いっ子
    rating

    4.0

    14 Reviews
    place
    東京都杉並区西荻南2-20-4
    phone
    0333333023
  • 07

    Shopping at unique stores

    Shopping at unique stores

    Shopping at unique stores

    Antique furniture, vintage shoes, high-end bags - Nishiogikubo features a variety of unique shops. N harvest is often mentioned as one of the most unique shops in Nishiogikubo. They have over 30 kinds of organic spices from Hunza, India, Sri Lanka and Turkey, as well as organic teas and dried fruits. Their concept, based on ecology and environmental protection, will enrich your shopping and they proudly deal in fair trade products. Let yourself feel good while shopping for these nice things.

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    Shopping in Nishi Ogikubo
    West Tokyo is home to some enormously popular destinations: Koenji is unbeatable for vintage shopping, .…

    N harvest

    N harvest

  • 08

    Enjoy the night life

    Enjoy the night life

    Enjoy the night life

    Going to an izakaya (a Japanese bar that serves food and drinks) is a great way to spend an evening in Japan. Nishiogikubo has plenty of old izakaya all around the town and Yakitori Yebisu is somewhere you can experience an authentic, local Japanese atmosphere. Order a glass of beer and grilled chicken yakitori and your tiredness will dissipate immediately. That’s the way Japanese businessmen get the power to work hard every day!

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    Nightlife in Nishi Ogikubo
    Nishi Ogikubu is small but eclectic neighbourhood just west of Tokyo on the Chuo Line. Often overshadowed by the more popular adjacent Kichijoji station, .…

    Yakitori Yebisu

    Yakitori Yebisu

    Ebisu
    place
    Tokyo Suginami-ku Nishiogiminami 3-chome 11-6
    phone
    0333322955

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