On my first visit to Japan I naively assumed I would encounter Godzilla paraphernalia everywhere. This misunderstanding can be traced to my complete ignorance of Japanese pop culture; not only did I not follow current trends in manga or anime, but I hadn’t even heard of such icons as Doraemon ドラえもん, Ultraman ウルトラマン, Anpanman アンパンマン, or Sazae-san サザエさん. Although I quickly stumbled upon the small Godzilla statue in Hibiya, it took me a few years to get around to putting this map and list together.
1. Godzilla statue ゴジラ像
There’s a small but satisfying Godzilla statue in Hibiya Chanter Square, just behind Hibiya Chanter Toho cinema, close to Yurakucho station. (UPDATE: In March 2018, a much larger statue was unveiled).
Location: Hibiya Chanter Square 「合歓の広場」 （ねむのひろば） (Nemu no Hiroba); UPDATE: renamed Hibiya Godzilla Square 『 日比谷ゴジラスクエア 』 in March, 2018 (map)
2. Toho Studio 東宝株式会社 (map)
Along the Sengawa River, out near Seijogakuen-Mae Station 成城学園前駅, is Toho Studios 東宝株式会社, the studio that first brought us Godzilla (and still does). The studio entrance is decorated with a distinguished Seven Samurai mural and a fierce Godzilla statue:
On my visit in 2012 the museum’s cafe was home to a Godzilla statue / costume. Hopefully it’s still there.
4. Ushi Tora bar ビアバー うしとら (map)
There is/was a gold Godzilla (or Mecha-Godzilla メカゴジラ?) in the bathroom of the wonderful Ushi-Tora bar in Shimo-Kitazawa. The bar has since moved.
5. Stone Godzilla Statues ゴジラ上陸の地 ゴジラ像 (Godzilla landing site) (map)
In the old fishing village of Higashi-shinagawa is a Yakatabune restaurant named Shinagawa Yakatabune Mutsumimaru 品川 屋形船 むつみ丸. Guarding the establishment are two stone Godzilla statues. This is no random location; “in fact”, Godzilla first steps foot onto Tokyo’s shores at this location in some of the films. (It may only be the location for Shin Godzilla シン・ゴジラ). See: ゴジラの“足跡”たどる 初代が上陸した品川 Godzilla’s “footprints” traced Shinagawa where the first generation landed
6. SHINJUKU TOHO Building (Godzilla on rooftop) ゴジラ(巨大 実物大) (map)
There’s a “life-sized” Godzilla head on the roof of the new Toho cinema in Kabukicho, Shinjuku.
- Godzilla named tourism ambassador of his old stomping ground
- Godzilla appears in the Tokyo skyline atop new Shinjuku skyscraper!
7. Godzilla Slide くりはま花の国 (Kurihama Flower World) (map)
This isn’t in Tokyo, but it’s an easy day-trip, and is very cool: a Godzilla statue that doubles as a children’s slide. See: Tokyo Daytripper: Gojira-Koen (Godzilla Park)
8. Army command center from Shin Godzilla タバ作戦指揮所（映画「シン・ゴジラ」） (map)
No Godzilla statue, but the location from which the Japanese Self-Defense Force stages its attack on Godzilla in Shin Godzilla. Here’s a view from the location, looking towards Musashi-kosugi:
- Godzilla amusement center, Chiba
- THE SELF-GUIDED GODZILLA TOUR OF TOKYO
- The fact that Godzilla was a man in a costume was officially a secret well into the 1960’s (Twitter)
- Aqua City, Odaiba’s Godzilla Christmas tree (Twitter)
- An Enormous Godzilla Made Of Straw Appears In Japan
- Godzilla attacks the Japanese Diet building (国会議事堂, Kokkai-gijidō) (photo)
- Godzilla in the Sumida River in front of Kachidoki Bridge (photo)
- Godzilla climbing Mt. Fuji (pursued by King Kong) (Twitter)
- Temporary Godzilla statue in Roppongi: Tokyo’s Giant Godzilla Statue Looks Amazing in the Rain
- Run for your lives: Godzilla hits Tokyo museum: The king of rubber monsters stars in a new show designed to remind us all who’s boss (CNN)
- “TOKUSATSU” – SPECIAL EFFECTS EXHIBIT AT MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART, TOKYO
- Ultraman statue (photo)
- Godzilla was, in part, inspired by the events of the Daigo Fukuryu Maru (“Lucky Dragon 5”), a Japanese fishing boat that was subject to the fallout of an American nuclear test in 1954. See: Atomic Tokyo: a nuclear tourism map